My sweet Sven is convinced that there are plans underway for his seventieth.
"Why do you think that?" I said.
"Well, they ask me when my birthday is every time I call or stop in. Every single one of them. Every single time."
It is true that ever since we went to Punta Cana in February for that fabulous vacation. The one where Sven turned into a fainting goat whose spells were triggered by the sound of my fork getting ready to put a bite of food into my mouth, he has had many encounters with receptionists, nurses and technicians.
Giving him test after test.
Trying to unravel this fainting mystery.
"They should know you well enough by now to understand that you don't like surprises," I said.
"It's not going to be much of a surprise," he answered. "Since they can't stop asking me when my birthday is."
"Maybe you should tell them to put your date in their birthday app."
"There's a birthday app?"
"Probably," I said.
"Well, I'm not going to be rude, Millie. They're planning a party for me."
I hate to be the one to break it to my husband, but between you and me, those medical people have been really nosey about my birthday too.
And all I got when March rolled around was another invitation in the mail for a colonoscopy.
I finally, reluctantly, accepted the invitation.
You know how it is when you schedule an appointment that is a couple of months away. There's a part of you that doesn't believe it will ever really happen. But then one morning you flip over your calendar to the new month and there it is written on a square.
And then, there it is next week.
And then, there it is tomorrow.
And then, here it is today.
Now, everybody has fears.
Mine however have nothing to do with a snake wearing a headlamp that is going to enter me through my back door.
Nor is it what he reports.
My fears are heights. I am scared to death of heights. Those legs that sprout out of potatoes. And awkward situations.
I can't really think of too many situations that could be more awkward than having a colonoscopy.
But I have decided to take the high road and make the best of my late in life debut on this particular venture.
That is why I am writing this documentary.
To help others.
Others, as in all of you chicken shits who have been avoiding this surely to be delightful experience.
What is my biggest concern you ask?
Well, what if I don't have all of my closets thoroughly cleaned out.
I don't like cleaning out closets.
And in order to empty my closets I have to read directions.
I despise directions.
Fortunately for me, Sven took on that task.
He read them out loud.
After I was done spitting fire, he calmly explained in his own words what I was supposed to do.
So, after a pleasant evening of watching Jim Carey from my couch, being a guy who couldn't say no, as I chugged down two thirds of an economy sized bottle of Drano for dinner and Sven ate a couple hot dogs, we went to bed.
The good news is, I slept well, considering the little time that I spent in bed.
It is now 9:00 AM.
I am sitting upon a pillow that I placed on the chair that is in front of my computer, sipping on a cup of steaming black coffee, because I read on the internet, that black coffee is considered a clear liquid.
And because I agree with the sign that is hanging in my kitchen.
Not the one about being a best friend because I drink and swear and gossip too much.
I don't gossip.
The one that says,
TASTES LIKE FRESHLY GROUND HEAVEN
So, as soon as I finish this cup of freshly ground heaven, I am going to drink another tall glass of freshly ground hell.
According to Sven, I am supposed to have the rest of my Liquid Plumber breakfast down my hatch before ten o'clock.
So, you ask, what is it like?
What should you expect on your special day?
Well, at this point, if you make it as far as I have, you are going to be wondering who in the hell convinced you to send in your RSVP.
Who was it and how did they do it?
You will also wonder if Stephen King has polyps.
Or you may turn all philosophical.
You might suddenly find yourself seeking truths.
Was our world really created in seven days and seven nights?
Could it have been the big bang theory?
Do we come from apes?
Is the answer 42?
What is the question?
Or did it all begin with one curios kid?
Was he watching his dad clean out the pipe that runs out of the garbage disposal?
Did that sight flip a switch in his mind? And suddenly he was thinking, "I wonder if I could duct tape a tiny flashlight onto the tip of a bunch of pipe cleaners all twisted together and then drug people so that I could shove the whole thing into their patooties and see what the heck is going on in there?"
You may also start to wonder how one would ever receive the calling to do this sort of thing.
Is it a whisper in the night?
A tap on the shoulder?
A, "I hear voices," sort of a thing?
Or are they just terrible gamblers?
I say if you are going to make a crazy bet, stick with the old, "The loser has to shave his head."
Now, if you will excuse me for a minute. I have to go see a man about a horse.
Where was I?
Um. Hang on a sec. Somebody wants me to buy a bridge.
As I was saying.
Pardon moi. I really gotta take this call.
Time for me to go upstairs to brush my teeth and powder my ass.
I am home.
I am sleepy.
I am polyp free.
"Millie, what about your mom?" says Sven.
"What about my mom?"
"We always have lobster dinner at your mom's condo on my birthday."
"Do you think I should I give the doctors a heads up that I already have plans?"
"Are you sure?"
"Yes. Honey, please stop talking to me. I am writing a documentary about my colonoscopy."
"How can you write a documentary about something you don't even remember?"
The doctor who performed my procedure is in the business because, as he put it, "I can prevent cancer."
Black coffee is not considered to be a clear liquid in certain circles.