Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes

As part of a larger corporate incentive, my company offers a discount on our health insurance premiums if we go through a two-step process to increase our healthy awareness. One of them is filling out a health questionnaire (no, I don’t smoke; no, I haven’t for a while; yes, I get a little sad sometimes; yes, I’m working on it).

The other part is one of two things: one, get, or have had a physical between 1/1/2012 and 2/28/2013; or two, get a full lab spectrum (a “blueprint for wellness”) at a phlebotomy lab.

Well, as I was not aware of the physical portion of the qualification process, and I didn’t want to go through the rigmarole of trying to get into my doctor, and then trying to have having him fill out a form, I opted for phlebotomy.

There is an approved lab in my neighborhood, if one considers South Russell my neighborhood (and out in Chestertucky, one would). I scheduled a first-in-the-morning appointment so I could get in and out.

I was not aware that most of the phlebotomists were out that day, leaving only one. I patiently waited; this is how things go sometimes.

For my patience, I was rewarded with Nurse Ratched. She had the bedside manner of Gregory House, with none of the charm. Again, given the sketchy information I was given around the qualification process, I applied for the wrong spectrum of bloodwork. Discovering my mistake elicited such a heavy sigh from Nurse Ratched, you would have thought I had suggested we eat her puppy for lunch. Once we got all of the paperwork sorted, she jabbed me pretty good in the krelbow with the needle, too. I was 100% sure I was going to look like I was driving nails up my arms given the ache (I was spared, I look only like a one-time user).

Good news, though, guys: my blood pressure is 117/70! It’s not the first time I’ve been asked if I ever experience fainting spells or lightheadedness. But, I’ve always had low blood pressure, so we can’t prematurely attribute it to my fabulous Buspar mellow.

This, however, was not the best part of my experience. I shuffled back out into the waiting room to put my coat back on, and Nurse Ratched sees the growing group of people waiting for bloodwork and says, “There’s going to be a wait of about 10 to 15 minutes; it’s only me.”

To which, a gentleman of a Certain Age (TM) stands up in the middle of the waiting room (which was actually centrally-located for four different medical practices in this tiny building – it was odd), makes a big motion of waving his hand in the air and calling out, “Bye!” Like we were all going to miss him and run after him so he could please, please come back.

So, he kicked up a big fuss all the way out to his car, with which he nearly backed me over. Then, reverse drops it into gear and goes tearing out of the parking lot out of the “Exit” driveway and floors it down 306.

It was a weird morning. I soothed my krelbow and sudden anemia with a Cinnamon Crunch bagel from Panera. That sort of made it worth it.


There’s a point in the process of looking for houses where you don’t think you can step foot in another one. You see house after house that for some reason or another, you pass on. You start to think that you will never find a house. Sure, you see one that maybe a possibility, you can see yourself investing the time and money into it, building a future in it. But for whatever reason, you have to pass on it (i.e. access to the attic was screwed shut).

So, you finally get to the point where you think you find “the one,” and you get excited, super excited.

You know the house has been on the market for a year. You know that it’s a short sale, but you have a loan pre-approval burning a hole in your pocket. You know that there’s a chance that the bank will drag their feet to the point of frustration. You know that maybe this won’t work out.

But you put in an offer anyway. You meet in Medina, have a basket of onion rings before you meet the realtor because you were busy at work and didn’t eat all day. You listen to a podcast on the way down the highway and think, “This is a hike, can I do this every day to work?” But you’re excited, because you think you’ll finally have to make this drive every day. You start planning traffic evasion routes.

You can tell Charlie is nervous when you sit and initial all sorts of forms and indemnity clauses. You are grateful that you took two semesters of business law and know the five elements of a contract are agreement, consideration, legal capacity, legal purpose, and genuineness. You read each line clearly, finally in a position to apply all of that studying you did. You explain the important parts of the contract to Charlie. You admire how your initials look next to each other on a legal document.

You listen to the realtor when he says that short sales can be a nightmare. You temper a lot of your expectations. You look at the stars in Charlie’s eyes, and hope they don’t get extinguished.

You celebrate pre-Valentines Day and your first joint legal endeavor with Yuengling, hummus, and fruit. You don’t realize that you were more nervous than you thought you were, and pick at your food.

You get gas, give Charlie a hug and head home. You’re tired, but in a good way.

You wait to hear back. You get excited. You don’t know how long it will take for the sellers to accept your offer.

You find out there are multiple offers on the house. In your heart, you know that you bid too low. You tell Charlie you’re pretty sure that they won’t take your offer. You try to prepare him to have the stars in his eyes extinguished.

Two days later, your realtor sends an email: the sellers took a higher offer. You were pretty sure that’s how it would end, but it still stings to read it. You take a deep breath and comfort Charlie. You take turns cursing the sellers’ realtor. You make a list of all of the streets in that neighborhood.

You’re secretly a little relieved that you have more time to save money and can pack your current house more slowly.

You comfort Charlie some more. You both sulk a little.

You sit down with the realtor’s portal and find more houses that look promising. You send an email to the realtor. You schedule another Saturday afternoon of five houses to look at.

You dust yourself off and start over again. Your house is out there, waiting for you to find it.