Friday, June 11, 2021

A Survey on Aging

Elzbieta and I have been emailing about my participation in a longitudinal study on aging; today was my phone interview.  It was a lot more fun than I ever imagined.  Feel free to intersperse laughter.  We did.

Right after saying that We'll do the MRI screening first. she began listing diseases and conditions and maladies, one more dire-sounding than the next, a never ending recitation of all that could go wrong with the human body.

Does this list get any happier?  

Nope.  But don't worry, if you haven't heard of it you probably don't have it.

Then on to foreign substances in my body. My hip - I knew the exact date without skipping a beat.  More metal, prostheses, piercings (which are apparently the jewelry itself, rather than the hole as I thought), pacemakers, hearing aids, cochlear implants, electrodes, electrode wires, shards of metal, had I ever worked in a metal plant, was I a welder..... it got weirder and weirder.

Then, she got to the good stuff:  Have you ever had a panic attack or an anxiety attack? Since when?  

Um, yeah. Ever since I was shot on January 8, 2011 while holding the hand of my 9 year old friend, who died.

Long pause as she entered my response. Then, Yup, that'd do it.

Things got even more interesting.

Are you claustrophobic?  I sure am.

Would you be willing to be inserted into a metal tube......

I didn't let her finish the sentence. There are no circumstances on God's green earth that could induce me to get into one of those things.

We laughed.  She thanked me for my time, put me on a list for non-MRI studies, and we hung up.

In retrospect, she should've started with those last questions.  And I should have paid more attention to the title of the screening.  But then I'd have missed 11 minutes of laughing on a sunny afternoon.  

No harm, no foul.


  1. I always try to get at least one laugh out of my medical providers. Some are easy, some are tough.


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