Sunday, January 27, 2013

the evils of demon drink

“If you love me you will go up to the local shop and buy some cream so I can have a pina colada…”

I went anyway. [just kidding]

Went into the shop and blindly [spectacleless] forked over an arm and a leg for the last bottle of cream in their fridge.

TO had her pina colada. In order that she might enjoy it I refrained from sharing the image in my head of cream curdling in a bath of acidic pineapple juice.

At 4 am I wakened to the sound of the most awful groans coming from the euphemism [bathroom].

“Do you need a bucket?” asked I solicitously.

“Yes please.”

Off I pops downstairs only to realise, halfway to the laundry, that my social ladder was full to overflowing and detoured towards the downstairs euphemism. “If a bean is a bean, what’s a pee?” my grandmother’s voice echoed in my head.
The answer, of course, is “a relief” – exactly what I felt as I used the euphemism. Mid-stream, I heard an almighty thump. It occurred to me that something awful had happened in the upstairs euphemism, but felt I had no choice but to continue the task at hand before investigating.

Free at last, upstairs I went without a bucket, only to find TO passed out on the euphemism floor. I gazed with concern at my soulmate lying there. She was breathing and had a pulse. What to do next? Sit her up? Get her back into bed?

She is not tall. How not tall is she? She is shorter, even, than I.
…Yep, that short!
How heavy is she? She is a healthy weight. A much healthier weight than I. Did I attempt to lift or move her? No. I thoughtfully put a fresh towel under her head and went back downstairs to find a bucket, hoping that by the time I returned she would have recovered.

Sure enough, by the time I returned she was staggering but mobile. A lump the size of an egg was apparent over her left eye. I persuaded her to relocate to the downstairs guest room – she would need bed rest and as I planned to go to work that day, she needed to be downstairs so Aunty could nurse her.

I was running a bit late for work that morning, and gave Aunty a business card, asking her to ring my new workplace and let them know I would be a little late.
After arriving and doing the most important just-arrived-at-work task – i.e. making lattes all round on the biggest, butchest looking commercial sized espresso machine you ever did see –related the story of things that go thump in the night.

Ever the problem solver [as if coffee connoisseur is not enough], the top boss suggested we put a seat belt on the toilet. “You must stay sitting when you are shitting” he warned gravely. “Shitting is a very serious business, you know.”
He even volunteered to write to the government suggesting they pass a law making it illegal not to have a seat belt on the toilet. He was sure the government would leap at the opportunity to create a new regulation.
[Never let it be said that toilet humour cannot be witty, or at least segue into political commentary.]

At approximately 2.30 pm on the day in question I answered the phone using my best, 25 year old blonde bimbo receptionist voice. The caller was Aunty explaining that she had been in the kitchen and heard a very loud thump. Considering Aunty is as deaf as a post, the thump must have been loud indeed.

TO, she said, had passed out on the euphemism floor, and she did not know what to do. “I can’t lift her,” Aunty said, sounding rather distressed.
I suggested she call an ambulance and, when they had arrived, ask one of the ambos to talk with me on the phone.
Aunty rang back a few minutes later to say TO had told her not to call an ambulance.

I said I would be home as soon as practical given the time and distance involved.

Arrived home to find TO fast asleep in the guest bed. The door handle had pushed a massive hole in the euphemism wall when TO fell. The floor, in turn, had pushed something close to a massive hole in TO’s head.

Fainting results when one has a stressful bowel movement because all of the body’s fluid rushes to the affected area. This is why infant mortality rates are so appalling in third world countries where clean water is in short supply – the infants are not dehydrated for lack of something to drink but because what they do drink is inadequate to compensate for what is lost as a result of drinking tainted water. [That’s not very well explained, but I think you will be able to nut out my meaning.]

TO was frightfully dehydrated, but not still being unconscious on the floor it was hard to justify calling an ambulance, and it was too late to take her to the local GP clinic for an hour or two on an IV drip.

Like all good health workers, she waited til four days after the last gastro symptoms before returning to work, but only lasted an hour on the job before being sent home.

Doctors doubt that the cream being three days past its use by date would cause such severe gastric “issues”; in fact they suggest she has been harbouring “super-bug” germs for some time and the cream just hastened the inevitable.

She’s still seedy and faint a week and a half later, and until a few days ago had cuts and bruises on her face suggesting a night “on the tiles” – or at the very least on some gravelly footpath after a night on the town.

I hope she is back to normal soon. I’m waiting for the right time to offer her a pina colada and see if she groans.

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