Sunday, January 08, 2017


I arrived at the pre-surgical office of my hospital for blood work (9 vials) and an X-ray along with 50 questions, all the same, asked by five different people. If you've had an operation they like to ask questions, like: are you who you say you are?

After arriving and signing in, I try the bathroom door (what else) and it is locked. So I go to the receptionist and ask her if it is locked or is someone in it? She replies that indeed it is locked, and you have to sign in first. I tell her I did and she hands me the key and a little plastic cup with a secured top and a plastic bag. In front of a room filled with patients, she says out loud: "When you go into the toilet, fill this cup!" This leaves me sheepish as I traipse from the sign-in desk to the toilet, go in and fulfill one request and one jar. I wonder if you can hear the toilet flush from the waiting room because I flush.

Coming out of the room I decide to look down and find a seat. Sitting I take out my book, β€˜In The Garden of Beasts' and start to read. In the corner of my eye, something is disturbing me, and I look up and sure enough there is a lady about two seats over sitting and reading. What is disturbing is she has her legs crossed and the one swung over is swinging back and forth at a rapid rate, the one anchored to the floor is moving up and down from toes to heel! I think, maybe she doesn't know the toilet key is at the front desk?

After watching her do her dance I notice something even stranger, she is reading with her mouth moving, emoting as she does! This made me realize that the poor woman has something she needs to fix and I need to get a life and read my book!

This week I have been to my GP, cardiologist, pre-surgical and to end the week, my cardiologist one more time. All this time I also had to make phone calls to the insurance carrier because it is new, we were picked up as of January 1, and I made the appointment with the surgeon long before we knew we were being changed to the new coverage. The amount of worry and begging with the new insurer that they cover this out of network surgeon was very trying.  Finally, the new insurer agreed! The operation better comes soon, I'm ready to kill myself.


  • From: Douglas Cook (I was on your CQL subcommittee)

    Hi Joe.
    I hope you don't mind but since you mentioned this blog at our initial CQL meeting I visit your every once in a while and enjoy your stories. Especially the ones about your daughter. They show a great love and devotion that inspires.
    I am writing just to say that I am sorry to read that you are having cardiac surgery. I have had 3 serious surgeries in my life (non-cardiac) and I know all about the weird thoughts, stresses and anxieties that can often pop into our heads during this time. Hang tough.
    My 80 year old father just had his 3rd bypass-stint type procedure and is doing very well. It sucked and it was hard to rehab from but he did it and is very glad he did so. He tells me he feels like a new man as he continues to eat bacon, eggs and cheese daily. Ehhh....he's 80. Lol
    Anyway.....I just wanted to pop in and send a note wishing you great luck with everything. I'll be sending out good thoughts and blessings for you and your family. -Douglas Cook (AKA: The only other CQL guy)

    P.S. I read "Garden of Beasts" and liked it. I highly recommend reading "Operation Mincemeat" if you like really bizarre but true stories of WW II. (Quick Sum: Allies used dead bodies to fool nazis.AND the plan was the Idea of James Bond author Ian Fleming when he was a soldier)

    By Blogger doug cook, at 8:43 PM  

  • That post was shorter when I wrote it in my head. Sorry 😐

    By Blogger doug cook, at 8:44 PM  

  • Doug,
    Thanks so much for your feedback and suggestions. I am enjoying the book and will try your suggestion when I'm done.
    Happy New Year!

    By Blogger Joseph Del Broccolo, at 3:51 AM  

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