Code Name Flatus

By Seamus Muldoon, Himself
Copyright © 1997-2017
All Rights Reserved

Analytical Techniques Useful When Your Mind Is Whacked Out On Exotic Pain Relief Medication

I am in recovery from major surgery in which my right shoulder was removed and a new titanium shoulder was installed in its place. This is not recreational surgery, and recovery takes even longer than in the instance of circumcision. Just as you have to leave yourself alone right after being circumcised to allow your poor member to heal up, you must also abstain from enjoying your anatomy while your shoulder heals up. Some say that was how I injured my shoulder in the first place.

For a few days in hospital post op, you are pretty much occupied with calling for more pain medication at every opportunity. You leave the hospital In a state of reverie not readily achievable on anything your physician would think of trusting you with at home on your own. During recovery at home you have to make due on meds that will nonetheless carry you off on flights of fantasy, but you are not quite so whacked out as you were during those first few days.

Nonetheless, when you wander into your office and sit at your computer and open you email, it is clear that you do not understand one damn thing anyone has said to you in those email messages. You decide that you dare not even try to respond to emails for a few days until the fog starts to clear.

In that interim you remain focused upon pain control, but if you are resilient, as I seem to be, you start to improve rather quickly. In another few days you again approach your computer, and this time the emails seem to make sense. That is a misapprehension. You only think you appreciate those messages, and so you respond to them in a manner that elicits responses like … “What?” That is another reliable indicator of where you are at mentally in your Gee Whiz state of recovery. Fortunately, just before surgery I sent everyone a message that said “I am having shoulder replacement surgery tomorrow morning and will not be useful to anyone for a week or two post op. My advice should be worth paying for by Valentine’s Day”. That is one of the most important CYA emails one can send in the circumstances.

Yet I quickly became bored and fumbled around for something harmless to which I could apply myself. On day four I found a page on the Internet site of a local television station dedicated to consumer matters entitled “Ask An Expert”. There was an icon I could click on to become one of their experts – lawyers who will answer on line questions from die lumpen for $ 30 bucks a pop. There was a “competence” examination that one had to pass in order to qualify as an expert - - how could I possibly resist that, right? The exam subjects did not include anything that I have ever dealt with in my 45 years of law practice. I passed it with flying colors and next day was notified that I am now one of their experts. If my E&O carrier knew of this I would be cancelled immediately. Glad I don’t have E&O coverage, so I don’t really have to be concerned about that.

The questions on the exam were designed to deal with the concerns of people who seek legal advice on line for $ 30 a pop. One was an exam question in which the consumer “client” (may God help us both) asks whether he can sue his former landlord for throwing away the stained mattress he left behind when he moved out of his apartment in the middle of the night in lieu of paying past due rent. Another asked about visitation rights with his ex girlfriend’s little child of whom he is certain he is not the father. A third asks about his former landlord’s obligation to refund the security deposit when there was a substantial rent arrearage upon his moving out. Another wanted to know if she would be committing a crime if she posted on line the pictures of her and her married boy friend having sex because he gave her the clap (whatever) and she is angry and wants to get even. I didn’t have the foggiest notion about any of this, so I just applied my medication laced common sense and passed the damn exam.

A few days later I get a list of inquiries that I can respond to for my half of the $ 30. Still in the pain meds cloud, I actually take a hand at one. Fortunately for me, when I go to post my answer I find that another expert beat me to it and I am locked out. I also see the “client” protesting that the answer given was not helpful and she doesn’t want to pay for it – a new problem, but not my problem. The light comes on – why are you even thinking of this, you fucking moron. I am no longer one of their experts. Whew!!

With that short escapade into reality, I again retreat back into the fog of whacky weed meds, having dreams in which I am on the speed dial list of Barack Obama’s Blackberry, and he won’t leave me alone. His user name is POTUS and he gives me the user name FLATUS. He keeps asking me things I don’t understand. I give him insane and useless answers. He sees substance in my answers and now thinks I am one of the smartest people he ever met. He calls night and day in this dream of mine and I am exhausted from lack of sleep. I hallucinate that I can see his future as a world leader and I give him directions about how to differentiate himself from all the other great men in history. He wants me to move to Washington and become a presidential advisor, but I have baggage that would prevent obtaining Congressional approval of my appointment. I spend days agonizing about whether to tell him about it or just keep quiet and hope no one ever finds out. Then – so my dreams go – everyone in Congress starts reading the stories on and the cat is out of the bag. Anderson Cooper reports that Obama has attached himself to some Rasputinesque Texas nut case lawyer, and a request is made for Obama to undergo psychiatric testing. I awake in a sweat, breathing hard with a very priapic penis that hurts even when I rub it. Since I can’t massage it with my right hand, which it is accustomed to, I get no relief.

A physical therapist visits the house to check on my condition and progress. Even the sound of her young voice sets off my libido, and the session is hurried because she is very embarrassed at my reaction to her. She calls later that day to say that another therapist will be taking over for her.

Against Belinda’s advice I insist upon a glass of wine with dinner. Wine and Vicodin don’t mix well with me. I can hardly walk back to my fat boy chair. The President Obama dream does stop, however.

My desire for red wine forces me to get off the whacky weed. I do. My mind clears. I can now understand my email messages and the evening news now makes the same old sense it always did before the surgery. Anderson Cooper never mentions my name. My priapism subsides. Damn! I was hoping that would continue.

By Seamus Muldoon, Himself
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