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Light Duty

It kind of sounds like I'm a truck. Not a motorhome towin' truck, more of a garage salin' truck. Not a stump-pullin' truck, more of a jet-ski town' truck.

I've been on light duty at work all week because of The Knee. The Knee (tm) doesn't actually feel that bad right now, since I've been off of it and on Alieve, for just over a week.

I did make it in to the Knee Doctor on Wednesday. He had a hard time making me say 'ouch' though, since by then I'd been off my knee for five days. The xrays didn't show anything (no surprise, I knew there wasn't anything wrong with the bones, that kind of injury I would have remembered) except a touch of arthritis (!!) on my kneecap. He said it was either torn cartilidge or the arthritis acting up. So I could take medication and see if the arthritis settled down, or I could have an MRI to see if it was torn. And stupid me, who's never had a major medical procedure before, thought, "why is he just offering the MRI, why doesn't he just tell me to go get one?" I want to know what's wrong, and  I'm getting the definite feeling he thinks I'm malingering, due to the lack of 'ouches'.  Which is just insulting, I would do a much  better job of 'faking it' if that's what I was doing.    So I say, "MRI, please" and he writes me out a scrip for that and a note for work. I trot across the street (literally, across the street, not literally trotting) and get an appointment for an Open MRI that afternoon. Went back to work for a while, then went to Open MRI and after getting my instructions and refusing earplugs I proceeded to fall asleep in the semi-dark, nicely airconditioned room with the soothing "chunk-chunk-chunkrattlearoundrattlearoundchunk-chunk-chunk" noises. Back to work, where I stay late to make up the time spent at the doctor's and MRI and am reminded by my fellow sufferers that MRIs are not cheap. Especially fancy-dancy Open MRIs. I was so excited to get an appointment that I forgot to check if the place was 'in-network.'  It's 10/20% for in vs. out of network, but still and extra 10% of too much is still too much. Thursday I came in early to continue making up the time spent at the doctors'.

After work I go to my hair dresser and get eight inches of my hair chopped off. I usually get a healthy trim at the beginning of summer, but it's hot already so I went shorter this time.


                My new short hair.


When I get home I see by the light blinking on my phone that people have called but no one has left a message. I call a friend to see if she's gotten the latest job she is up for, and talk about my knee. When I get off the phone 40 minutes later (she's been unemployed for a while and doesn't get out much) the message light is blinking, which is weird because I didn't hear call waiting go off. So I retrieve the message, it was sent at 7:20 , according to SBC. And it's the Knee Doctor! I had to listen to it twice to make sure I wasn't imagining it. Wow. He called me after  normal business hours, a day before he was supposed to get back to me, and (this is the biggie) left a message!!  I didn't think he would do any of those things, especially the message (because of HIPPA, which I can see the reasons for, but it does make life more difficult for those who don't want to keep their medical conditions private).  He said there's a partial tear in the cartilidge and arthroscopic surgery is indicated. The next day he calls me at work and I ask a bunch of questions and wind up scheduling the surgery for  the week after next. Also he faxes me another note to keep me off of the knee until then. So I make a copy of the note and write underneath his faxed note that I'll be off the day of the surgery and probably the day after, then I put it on my boss Satan's Caitin's desk. She comes back from lunch, reads the note and says (I swear to Ghu) "So, you're going to be out the whole day then?" "For surgery? (my eyebrows are so far up they're on the back of my head), Yeah, and probably the next day too." She says 'ok' and goes back to staring at her monitor. Ack, hate hate hate.  The woman in charge of HR/Injury issues for the warehouse had been by not 15 minutes before, heard my tale of woe and told me none of it was a problem, if I was gone more than five days they'd send me FMLA paperwork but I'd still get paid, and good luck, hope it goes well.

So another week of light duty, then surgery and probably at least another week after that. Light duty at my job means counting things. It's not supposed to be a punishment but it sure feels like one. "Can't do your regular job?  Here have some work so boring you just want to slit'em and die."

I finished one book this week, Hammered, by Elizabeth Bear. I was unaware that this was a series, and both the person who lent me the book and Ms. Bear ought to be grateful that the sequel, Scardown comes out at the end of the month. Right now I'm about  1/3 of the way into Whispering Nickel Idols, the latest entry in one of my favorite series. After that I'll read the random Rex Stout I picked up to familiarize myself with Nero Wolf and Archie. (For those of you that haven't read Glen Cook's Garrett PI series, Garret is the Archie to the Dead Man's Nero.)

But for now it's off to the pool with me. Then later on Mr. and Mrs. Smith because it looks like a decent action movie and it stars Angelina Jolie.


Morning street
Elephants That Are on FIRE

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