Where There’s a Will, There’s a Chill
June 28, 2007, 4:04 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

In summertime the living is supposed to be easy, but I’ve been struggling here. Yesterday I had to make the trek out to Loyola Medical Center, where the nice doctor at the Bone Clinic ordered a 24-hour urine test and told me I need to cut my caffeine intake in half. I am now in deep shock and mourning, trying to convince myself that ginseng will make an adequate substitute for my beloved coffee and Diet Coke. It seems my bones have thinned by about three to four percent, which is considered statistically significant enough to treat prophylactically. They must also do some testing to eliminate (haha) the possibility of other undiagnosed conditions, which is how I found myself returning home on public transportation with a pee hat and a jug, thankful that Loyola has the kind discretion to provide a brown paper bag for each, plus a clear plastic drawstring bag in which to tote them. Assuming nothing unexpected emerges from my tests I will be put on a preventive medication to help retard the thinning, caused at least in part by the Arimidex I take to shut down my estrogen production (my 2004 breast tumor was estrogen-positive).

I spent almost two hours cooling my heels in the freezing waiting rooms of Loyola, emerging into the oppressive heat and humidity that has been wreaking havoc with my sleep and concentration, not to mention making my hearing aids sound all mushy and my computer’s hard drive grind like it needs a vacation. Believe me, I know the feeling. I’ve been sleeping in the basement for the last few nights, at least to the extent that I sleep at all. Any possible novelty value of this temporary relocation is vastly overshadowed by the basement’s relatively greater distance from the bathroom, of which I am by far our home’s most frequent and enthusiastic visitor.

After four miserable years of suffering through summer, I finally broke down and used my Harry Potter profits to order a 10,000-BTU portable air conditioner from Circuit City. I am awaiting this device with tremendous anticipation, because it will not only improve my sleep and concentration but will also enable me to shut out the pool noise from the house two doors down. I profoundly regret ever buying a house without central air conditioning, but we were forced to buy under time pressure to escape harassment from our obsessive-compulsive landlord. Since rarely (if ever) do I allow exhaustion to get in the way of my bargain-hunting, I am happy to say that I purchased my new portable cooling device at a whopping $95.00 off. That is basically $95.00 more that I won’t be in hock to Mastercard, so I’m quite pleased with myself.

My 7-year-old daughter already has a window unit installed in her room, which has been rechristened Club Iceberg. She has installed an official sign on the door, with a sticker that she moves to indicate whether Club Iceberg is open or closed to the public. Apparently my room is to be the site of the new Club Igloo, but I’m pretty sure we are too small to obtain an entertainment license and will therefore have to send our customers across the hall to Club Igloo for the hula light show extravaganza and other improvised entertainments.

Having awakened irrevocably and against my will at 5:30 A.M. and thrashed in bed for the requisite 90 or so minutes, this morning I donned my yet-unsullied urine hat (more like a half-hat, actually). Feeling like Sister Bertrille, I modeled it for my spouse and asked him how he liked it. He replied enthusiastically, “I like your new hat!,” and I was mildly unsettled by his unbridled enthusiasm until I realized that he was quoting from P.D. Eastman’s Go,Dog. Go!, possibly the only perfect book ever written and a depiction of the only party I ever wanted to attend apart from the ones at Club Iceberg.

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I love the feeling of having one air-conditioned room in an otherwise warm house. It’s like the excitement of walking into the beer cooler at Binny’s on a hot summer day.

Comment by Joe

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