Thursday, January 10, 2013

Kind of Blue

This bottled water blue my mind!
I just got into work after spending last night at the GBMC Emergency Room...Feeling parched last night, I reached into my fridge and drank half a bottle of Deer Park bottled water  faster than a blink and, as I was putting bottle back in fridge, suddenly noticed it was a weird, pale blue-greenish color.

As I held it up to the light to inspect it, I noticed there was some kind of blue-ish shit dissolving in the bottom and little specks of crap (like the stuff you rinse out after the dental hygienist cleans your teeth) floating around. Ewwwww! WTF (What the Flotsam)?

Panicking, I thought maybe it was contaminated or tampered with like those CIA-sponsored Aberdeen LSD experiments or that some mutated viral organism got in it like in Barry Levinson's "The Bay" (OK, I'm exposed to a lot of conspiracy theories at work and I guess it's rubbing off on me)...while I didn't expect a mudshark to suddenly tear open my stomach and flop around on my kitchen floor, at the very least I figured my bottled water was somehow “compromised”…

Like Shemp Howard, I was in a panic!

It's funny, but I had just been reading about Shemp Howard's legendary hypochondria (the Stooge who routinely got eye-gouged and clonked over the head with hammers was apparently afraid of his own shadow!) in Michael Fleming's The Three Stooges: An Illustrated History, From Amalgamated Morns To American Icons, and here I was panicking worse than the eldest Stooge. Hee bee bee bee bee!

Filipino action star Weng Weng
But better safe than sorry, especially after the medical maladies I suffered this past fall, so I went to the GBMC Emergency Room - it's less than five minutes away from my house - at around 10:30 p.m. last night to be safe (and I'm sure when I get the bill, I'll be sorry!). There I registered, gave a blood and urine sample to the affable Filipino male nurse and then proceeded to talk to the guy about the career of Filipino film star and martial artist Weng Weng while waiting. If you’re looking for a good icebreaker with people from the Philippines, you can’t go wrong with mentioning the 2 foot, 9-inch dwarf Weng Weng and his  performance as a vertically challenged spy named Agent 00 in For Your Height Only (1981). Works every time!

There was a lot of waiting.  Another aid, some white guy in a ponytail who looked like he listened to heavy metal, came in and took a blood sample. He was not a Wang Wang fan, so we didn’t have much to talk about.

90 minutes in I was told to take a seat in the Emergency Room lobby, where the TV was airing that stupid Amish Mafia reality TV show that always seems to be on the Discovery Channel and always seems to be airing in hospital waiting areas. I think the same episode was airing when I got my MRI at Hopkins back in August.

While sitting in waiting room and while reading my Three Stooges biography I noticed there was some midget chick freaking out, screaming hysterically about what meds she did or didn't take (paramedics cautiously guarded her), and causing a commotion it was impossible to ignore. Somebody eventually call the Drama Queen's parents (and hopefully her shrink)...

Moonshiners making mash
Meanwhile, Discovery Channel was now airing another reality show called Moonshiners that featuring the hillbilly equivalent of today's insanely popular (and trendy) craft brewing craze. Deep in the heart of Appalachia, local yokels were shown talking about how to make the perfect moonshine "mash" using Mother Nature's own organic ingredients of water, sugar, corn and yeast. All of a sudden this fidgety hillbilly guy (hey, he actually did introduce himself as "just a hillbilly"!)  came over, sat down next to me and started talking about the show.

"See that guy? That's Timmy, I know him -  he makes great White Lightnin'...Best moonshine is down in the Carolinas, good soil down there, gotta use copper pipes, though..." Hillbilly Man talked at a lightning pace as he proceeded to give me incredibly detailed moonshine recipes, which led into a discussion on how chickenshit and Goldfish bowl water makes pot plants grown 7-feet tall. Inevitably, the homebrew/homegrown discussion veered off into a detailed analysis of the best meth amphetamine recipes and the best meth labs (he praised the roadside vendors of Missouri, Kentucky and Tennessee in this regard). 

When I asked him if he watched Breaking Bad, he yelled "Hoo boy! That's the shit!" and gave me a high-five...before abruptly going off on a tangent about (wink-wink) The Aryan Brotherhood (he was now starting to scare me! Do I look like a neo-Nazi? Or was the over-familiarity because I was reading a book about Stooges?) and "Hitler Toots" ("Them Nazis were fearless cuz they wuz doing Hitler Toots - high as kites on meth, they'd never surrender cuz to them they was seeing not double or triple but 10 enemies at a time and thinking they wuz invincible!" (Wait, wasn't this a plotline in "Hellboy 2"?) 

Hitler Toots: Methed out Nazis cranked it up during WWII

He was all cut up in his face and said something about being robbed and hit in the head with a wood plank, but he was talking so fast and pacing about so much that I figured he had had a few tokes before coming into Emergency!" Interesting character, who spoke passionately like a microbrewer  or food gourmand talking about his recipes! And he sure knew more chemistry than me!

By the time I was finally led into the Triage section, I had already been there three hours, had learned about the Amish Mafia, Appalachian moonshiners and most of the history of the Three Stooges up through latter-day stooge Joe "Cut It Ouuuut!" Besser. I was ready to go home and when an assistant tried to coax me into disrobing and putting on one of those open-back pajama tops, I refused. "That won't be necessary," I said. "I think it's all a false alarm."

I told yet another nursing aid about the recipes I had been given for "White Lightnin'" moonshine, and mentioned that "White Lightnin'" was also the name of a movie about hillbilly dancing legend Jesco White. Somehow we got on the subject of music and this aid showed me his videos from the Who's most recent American tour stop in Philadelphia.

"Small world," I said. "I saw 'em with Keith Moon and John Entwistle, the whole band, doing Quadrophenia back in 1975 at the Cap Centre. Almost blew my eardrums out, I should have come up here afterwards!"

My water bottle, now wrapped in a biohazard pouch
Finally, the doctor came in to see me at 2 a.m. and immediately smiled when he saw my book.

"Oh, you like the Stooges?"

"Sure," I replied. "What man, doesn't?"

I now felt like a full-fledged Stooge, having wasted over three hours waiting around and amassing health bills all because of blue-tinged water.

The doctor said all my vitals were good and that nothing was amiss in my blood or urine samples (go me and my liquid purity!) and that as far as testing the tainted water bottle - which was now wrapped in a biohazard baggy - he didn't know what to do with it or where to test it.

"And I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be covered by your health insurance," he added.

Say no more. In fact, 'nuff said.

I'm outta here, poorer financially for sure, but much richer in bootleg crank, weed, and alcohol recipes. Hillbilly Man should hold workshop seminars!

Labels: , , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home