The Absurd Epistolary Adventures of the Astonishing FartMan chronicles the amusing escapades
of the lovable, stinky, and obnoxious Cape & Tights Super Hero, and his maudlin Alter Ego, W____,
as they learn to cope with Stage IV colon cancer, each other, and their annoying fellow human beings.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Pass the Body Around and Have a Party!

From: The Astonishing FartMan
Sent: Wednesday, May 25, 2011 8:05 AM
To: R____________
Subject: Re: Pass the Body Around and Have a Party

Hey R_____,

Thanks for your amusing email. "Pass the Body Around and Have a Party!" You sure got that right. The Med Biz exactly!

And boy, do I know what that’s like, from the supine perspective of The Body Being Passed Around.  It turns out that the supposedly sublime experience of gazing into the eternal abyss ends up these days being nothing more poetic than a rolling view of the water-stained ceiling of a hospital hallway. Or has it always been thus?

Good luck finding any purdy and ennobling death poetry in the halls of a modern hospital.

And even if there were any poetry in those sick-smelling stale sterile corridors, nobody would have time to find it because we'd rather occupy ourselves filling out and collecting those endlessly banal forms that nobody else will ever read. Maybe there is some poetry there somewhere, but good luck finding it.

How well we wear our cynicism on our sleeves this day!

Will they stop passing me around when I croak? Or will they ding my health insurance for an autopsy and a thorough postpartum disembowelment, before handing me off to the mortician to arrange the final deposit?

Yes, R____, you are getting to be an ornery, and cynical, old 5FUer, and you might as well get used to it, ‘cause it’s all downhill from here.

The trick seems to be to arrange for the Body and the Mind to poop out at approximately the same rate, so that a bliss of mental decline closely accompanies and ameliorates the misery of creeping physical decrepitude.

From what I’ve seen, it looks like it’s usually no fun for The Body to outlast The Brain, although I’ve seen some interesting exceptions in a few friends and former bosses.

And it might be even less fun for The Brain to outlast The Body, a circumstance which, unless mets grow in my head, I will probably get to find out about first hand before too long.

Morbid as it is, since you are in the hospice biz, maybe sometime we can talk more seriously about this topic so that I can pick your expert brain about the way to do such things properly.

And once we get a good buzz going, maybe we could have a little philosophical chat about how the breadth of meaning in the word "hospice" has in modernity lost its religious connotations almost entirely to the medical. That tells something: Probably a big historical mistake for religion to involve itself so deeply in medicine. The nurses are all mostly Catholic, the doctors are all mostly Jewish, all of which is fine by me. But the ostensibly Baptist Hospitals, Catholic Hospitals, Methodist Hospitals, Presbyterian Hospitals, and probably also the Pentacostal Hospitals if there are any, well nowadays they are all mostly atheist. And the sadder fact is, the Jewish docs and the Catholic nurses mostly think that is just fine. I think these days you gotta decide whether you want to specialize in messing around with the body or messing around with the soul, 'cause it's hard to handle both at the same time.

Good thing they haven't figured out a way to pass my soul around, too!

Hope to see you and V____ sometime soon.

Meanwhile, I remain . . . ,
Your Friend,
The One and Only
Melodious and Malodorous Super Hero,
The Astonishing FartMan

No comments:

Post a Comment