Sunday, December 31, 2006

American Health Pie

A long long time ago

I can still remember when a doctor tried to cure and heal

You knew that if you were sick or hurt

That it would not cost you your shirt

And maybe you could even make a deal

But Empire didn't meet the deadline

To get some help for neck, back and spine

Bad news for the doctor

We can't pay any doctor

I can remember that I cried

When I realized Blue Cross had lied

The company sure took their side

The day that health care died

So, Bye-Bye American Health Pie

Took the subway to the clinic

For some health care to buy

And, them Empire boys were selling buckets of lies

Singin' you could cure yourself if you try

Or we won't have to pay if you die

by Caryn Isaacs


Thursday, March 25, 2004

Stop The Madness

They knew the time would come when they'd have to make a decision whether Mom would live with Joe in Boston or move into Shady Acres near Missy.

"I think you're Mother's gone mad!" Dr. G sounded a little crazed himself. Usually he measured his words so carefully. Missy would have thought he'd say, your Mother seems a little distracted or even that she has the beginning of Alzheimers. He sounded so over the top. Was it he who was going mad? "Mrs. O'Brien just handed me a million dollar check!"

Missy was speechless for a minute. "Thank you for calling, Doctor. I'll have to speak to my brother and we'll get back to you."

Thankfully, he picked up on the first ring."What now?" Joe was screaming into the phone.

"What's your problem?" Missy almost forgot why she was calling.

"Father Sullivan just called. Mother sent him a million dollar check." Missy realized she'd better get right over to her Mother's.

""I'll call Aunt Elizabeth and ask her to go over until I can get there. She may have noticed something." Their Aunt lived in the same building.

"Oh Missy, I'm so glad you called. I don't know what's going on. There's a moving van in front of Maureens and a for sale sign on the door. I used my key to go in when no one answered my knocks. There was an envelope with my name on the counter with a million dollar check and nothing else. Has your mother gone mad?"

 Just then Missy's dog Lucky started barking like mad. "Lucky, calm down before I go mad. "Hold on Auntie Liz, while I get the door." There was a delivery man with a huge floral arrangement in the shape of a horseshoe. "Oh God, it's from Mom. She must really have gone mad!" Missy read the card.

"I know you and your brother have been disussing me but you don't have to worry. You know that mad money I keep? You and Joe can split it along with whatever you get for the condo. You know I've been going out on that new gambling boat with my bridge partner, Herbie. Well, we won the big tournament, 10 million dollars. We'll call you as soon as we get settled in Monte Carlo. Of course, I'll be Mrs. Glickstein by then. You may think I've gone mad, but nothing can stop me now."  


Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Dangerous Minds

As we get older, most of us think about the agony of losing our minds to dementia or Alzheimer's. Some bizarre mental disorders are not as common, but they do occur.

Apotemnophelia is a compulsion to amputate ones own limbs. Necrophelia is a strong sexual obsession with death. Capgrass Syndrome is a delusion of doubts. Restless leg syndrome causes a crawly sensation. Fatal Familial Insomnia is a human form of mad cow disease.

So, if you think you have any of these conditions or something as unique, but your doctor tells you it's all in your mind, your next thought could be:

1. Are you out of your mind. The doctors know everything.

2. My minds made up, I'll just have to live with it.

3. I can't make up my mind.

4. I have an open mind, as long as it doesn't cost too much.

5. In my mind, it's the HMO's fault.

6. I've a mind to find a new doctor.

7. I've had a mind to just give up.

8. I'm of two minds. One wants to accept the verdict, the other wants options.

9. I'm going to use my own mind and get an answer.

10. Maybe it's all just in my mind.

Private Enemies

There's a knock at the door. "who's there?"

"It's Charlotte, Mrs. Jacobs, from Meals on Wheels."

"Don't try to leave that stuff here. I know your trying to poison me."

"Mrs. Jacobs, it's good food. All your neighbors like it. You've refused your delivery three times now. I won't be coming back again if you don't open the door."

"Go away, I know what's in that stuff. You can't get rid of me that easily."

The telephone rings."Hello?"

"It's the front gate, Mrs. Jacobs. A social worker from Memorial is here to see you."

"I don't know any social workers. Tell them you didn't get any answer. They could be terrorists. Why don't you people do your job? Don't you know when someone is trying to break in or are you one of them?"

The door again. "Go away!"

"UPS, mamm. Package."

"Take it away, quick, it could be a bomb."

"I don't think it's a bomb, mamm. It feels like clothing. It's a shirt box from Chicago."

"Get rid of it. How did you get by Security? You terrorists know all the tricks."

The phone. "Hello?"

"Hi Mom, how are you? Did you get my birthday present?"

"I'm doing great. I just finished breakfast with that nice lady from Meals on Wheels. The gift is lovely. It must have cost a fortune to send it all the way from Chicago."

Banging at the door. "We're going to have to break the lock. She must have changed the key again. This is the third time she's pressed the panic button this week. I'm afraid we're going to have to take her in. It's a shame no one is looking out for her."

Author; Caryn Isaacs

Safety First

Julia couldn't understand why Mary complained all the time. Well, this was her last day working for the old woman. She wouldn't miss the whining, but she hoped she could get another job real soon. Besides the money, she needed the telephone to call her mother in Haiti.

"Julia, where are you? I've been up for hours. I need to go to the bathroom."

"Just go in the diaper, Mary. I'm busy now." Julia was finishing her breakfast and looking at the television.

"I don't want to make in the bed. It smells bad enough in here."

"I just washed the sheets last week. OK, let's get you up. This is going to be a busy day."

"Are you leaving me here again?" Julia almost forgot that she wasn't supposed to let on about the move. Mary's daughter was tired of the daily complaints too. She had finally found a place where Mary could live near her. Although Julia thought Mary was doing just fine since she had moved in. Sure, before there had been some problems with falling. But now, the lights came on and off with a clap or a timer. The tub had been changed to a stall shower with rails and a seat. The doorbells chimed if anyone opened a door. Surely, Mary couldn't ask for better care.

"Oh, my feet are cold. Where are my slippers?" Mary's nightgown was open to the back to make it easier to put her on the toilet. Mary could use the bathroom and shower herself, but this is what Julia got paid for.

"You know I had to throw those out. You were slipping all over the place."

"Where is the rug I keep here by the bed?"

"It's in the closet. You can't have anything that you can slip on."

"I could get up myself if this metal bar wasn't here. And why do I have to sleep with these gloves on? My feet are cold, not my hands."

"The bar is there so you don't fall out of the bed during the night. The gloves are so you don't scratch yourself." Julia was tired of explaining the same things over and over."Come on, I have your cereal ready."

"I don't want cold cereal. I want pancakes and bacon."

"You know your daughter turned off the stove so we don't have a fire."

Julia walked right behind Mary. She felt a little sorry for her. Mary would certainly be safe from harm in the Nursing Home, but  she didn't want to think about her own Mother living in a place where safety came before love. 


Monday, January 26, 2004

Catch Me If You Can

The reason I'm leaning on one leg and then the other is that if I stand too long on the left one, I may bleed right through my bandage. Even though I scotch taped a Publix bag over the bandage, sometimes it just gushes out. I try to keep the weight off that leg, but the inside of my shoe keeps rubbing on corn on my other foot.

I'm not going to give that Chiropodist another nickle. Medicare paid him a fortune for me already. Last time, he had the nerve to ask me for $10. just to cut my nails. Well, he lost my business. Now, I just go into the emergency room whever they start to dig in.

I'm only waiting on this line for the bus because I had to fire that stupid girl. She doesn't even know how to cash a check. She had the nerve to tell me I wrote it out wrong. I really wasted my money on that half price discount home health policy.

If I didn't need to get my prescription filled, I wouldn't even have left the house. That guy should come here with all I'm paying him. He says he can't get on the bus with his wheel chair. Look at me, with two bad feet, am I in any position to be running?

He should give me his whole bottle of pain killers and keep the cholesterol pills. He says he's getting them from a reputable Canadian pharmacy, but last time I tried to cut them in half, they just disintegrated.

Well, at least it won't be a wasted trip. I can get another load of free plastic bags.