Sunday, June 12, 2011

Big Hats & Delta Blues

An eventful couple of days.  Yesterday, I hosted a "Belmont Belles" soiree.  Basically, about a dozen fillies got together to put on floppy hats and pick horses.  More than anything, it was an excuse to visit with friends and nibble on Southern summer delicacies such as chicken salad, strawberries with powdered sugar, and pimento cheese.  Yum!  The preacher's wife picked the winning horse, which makes me more prone to believe in divine intervention.  (I picked the favorite - nearly always a mistake in the Triple Crown races - who was lucky to finish sixth after a collision just out of the starting gate.)  It was a fun time and I think I'll try that one again.

Poor FryDaddy was put to work - he valiantly cleaned, chopped, swept, shoved furniture around and then disappeared with Victorian Marxist to watch a movie in peace while the hens descended on the house.  He really was a trouper about the whole thing.

Just the day before, I had an appointment to follow up on something that my "throat doc" had been concerned enough about to send me to a colleague.  Leaving out some of the gruesome details, I have scar tissue in my trachea.  This has to be monitored (leaving out the "how" that is accomplished is one of the aforementioned gruesome details) because scar tissue is rather like kudzu.  It's a non-native species that, if left unchecked, will totally take over, choking the very life out of whatever it curls around.  Thanks to modern medicine, taking care of this isn't that terrible.  But lately, my nose seemed to be getting involved, along with the throat, so off I went to see a "nose doc" who would interpret the CT scan.  (That's not mine at the top of the post, but it gives you an idea.  Sort of like a Rorschach inkblot, isn't it?  Or like an aerial view of a river delta.  Mine's not nearly so symmetrical, which explains the "delta blues" part of the post title.)

The doctor and I got along well - always a consideration with me.  If I can't crack jokes and still get my questions answered, it's best for all involved for me to find someone else.  (My favorite involved a doctor I saw about my throat seeing on my chart that I was an attorney [strange, but true - passed the Bar exam more than a decade ago] and asking, "So are you a malpractice attorney?" and me answering, "Not yet."  He laughed and we got along famously.)  All joking aside, I make my living talking and teaching other people to talk - I'm very particular about who gets to poke around my larynx and in such an instance, I much prefer to go to the people who write the scholarly articles rather than the ones who (hopefully) read them.

As he put it, "You have some anatomical anomalies here."  Yep - I have mutant sinuses, yet without any accompanying mutant powers, which just seems unfair.  Shouldn't I at least get to breathe fire?  In short, I have a septum (the thingie that divides the nostrils into two sides) that goes hard to the right.  I have openings in my sinuses where I shouldn't and I have closed chambers where there should be openings.  In short, it's a mess which is causing swelling, pressure, "recirculation" (the snot's too dumb to get out of the sinus chambers), and shortness of breath.  Nothing dangerous, but it's beyond just being annoying.  So in August, both docs are going to work on me.  (Much preferable to me than having two surgeries done.)  The throat surgery is quite minor (again, thanks to modern medicine) but the nasal work is more involved.  He'll "detach" the septum and reset it, then basically reconstruct my sinus cavities to close off opening and open up closings.  Recovery will not be lengthy, but it's likely to make me grumpy - stents to breathe through, black eyes, packing - much yuck.

And no guarantee of mutant powers at the end of it.