Friday, December 5, 2014

Infectious Grooves

The Ear or Sinus Problem
I am, once again, at the LSU Interim Hospital waiting room with a complaint of a stuffed up and ringing left ear; a condition which I have been afflicted by for about 4 days now.
The ear drops which Johnny B. gave me (he had "the same thing") did not do the trick; he said that they were given to him in tandem with antibiotics.
Hitting the ear with water in the shower, as hot as I could stand it, for "20 minutes" as suggested by the cashier at Sydney's Beer and Wine store did not help.
I didn't try Sudafed; as suggested by the other cashier ("they keep it behind the counter so you have to ask for it"); and I never did learn how to do the ear-popping trick which skin divers use to equalize pressure, as suggested by John Patton, the classical guitarist; I was always afraid that I would rupture an ear drum or force mucous into the canal, leading to congestion.
So, I came here to the ER and added "chest pain" to my complaint (as suggested by Johnny B.) and was whisked immediately into the EKG room; and then expedited to the interior waiting room; just a heartbeat away from being seen by a doctor, as Johnny said they would.
The "chest pain" is not a total fabrication, as I have been hurting "all over," lately, between the flu symptoms, which settled into the tendons which I use the most (my picking wrist and my fretting wrist, and my knees -after I walked about 5 miles one day).
John Patton
Vocals Affected
Last (Thursday) night, I only made a couple dollars. I could hardly hear myself singing.
Plus, Leslie was sitting on Lilly's stoop next to me with his bongos, but wasn't playing them (they were still in the case).
Instead, he had hold of some tassels which he had found, like cheerleaders pom-poms, which were attached to a stick, and was shaking them along with the music that I was playing (cheering for me?) until the point that I was ready to ask him to stop.
It crossed my mind that he may have been trying to thwart my effort to make money; so that I would become more dependent upon what little bit he had left of his 30 dollar energy stipend; and would follow him around.. 
Hospital Skeezers
 I was in the waiting room at the hospital, and wanted to step outside for a cigarette.
"I'm going to go out for a couple minutes and smoke a cigarette," I said to another patient, a 20 something year old in a plaid shirt, wearing eyeglasses. "Would you let them know; if they call me?"
He didn't answer my question, but asked one of his own: "Do you have another cigarette?"
Instead of being in the waiting room, ready to tell the nurse that I just stepped out, he was coming along with me.
I reluctantly handed him one of my American Spirit cigarettes.
We had just lit them up; when up walked a skinny young black guy; who had noticed that we were walking towards the designated smoking area and had followed us.
He asked the guy in the plaid shirt for a cigarette.
"I just bummed this one," said the guy.
Then, he turned to me and looked at me expectantly.
"I just gave one away," I said; as if I had fished the limit of my generosity.
His expression seemed to say "Well, then why can't I have one, too?"
He sat down and began to leer at me; probably mulling over the fact that I had given a white guy a cigarette, but then refused a black guy one.
The guy in the plaid shirt said that he would save him a "short" (the end of his cigarette).
I wish I knew why such a thing angers me so much. Is it because I am too uncomfortable asking a total stranger for charity that I pick them off the ground; or pay exorbitant amounts for them; leaving me almost broke sometimes?
Is it because the first guy, after I asked him to do something for me; immediately dismissed it and turned around and asked me to do something for him (give him a cigarette) instead?
Or, am I angry at myself for being a slave to an addiction which puts me in the way of skeezers all the time?
The Living Arrangement
I need to get on my horse and pursue my own place to live; getting as much mileage out of my veteran status as possible.
It is common for people to wait "years" to get a place; and so, having about 2 years of waiting under my belt; I may be that much closer to getting something. I know that my caseworker is aware of me; but it wouldn't hurt to remind him that he is aware of me. Maybe I have been waiting longer than just about anyone else on their list by now...
5 Weeks Off For Leslie
Leslie is very needy of attention.
He has 5 weeks off from his job at the University of New Orleans; and this will be a test to see if one of us drives the other one crazy.
When we are together in the house, his conversation is basically uninterrupted; and directed towards me. Even if he is listening to the radio; he will say things like "This is my favorite song!," or he will tell me an anecdote about what the song means to him; or tell me about the time he saw the particular band in concert -and oftentimes I am hearing these stories for the 3rd or 4th time- instead of just quietly listening.
He wants us to do everything together. If I want to run to the store "real quick," it will be: "Wait, let me get my shoes on..."
One has to decide if this is a small or large price to pay for a roof over ones head.
I know that my plan to have a CD out by Christmas has been set back.
Even when I stay behind at the house, over his mild protestations and evident disappointment, I don't reach the same level of concentration, as I worry that there might be repercussions; like him bursting in drunk and ordering me to leave the house in the middle of the night.
The Wait
It is now 7:44 PM, and I have been here in the waiting room for about 3 hours.
Tonight, I could go out and play with my ear still stuffed up and ringing.
I have an appointment with the Healthcare For The Homeless people, who will be at the VA Center on Monday. Any drugs which they prescribe will come free; whereas, I might walk out of here in an hour or two or three with a prescription which I won't be able to afford unless I go out and make some money with the stuffed up ear.
But, at least I might find out what ails me; some kind of ear infection carried by night herons, perhaps...


Wheely said...

Hey, stay away from women walking down Decatur Street stabbing guys...
And kudos for the band mention :)

Alex said...

All you have to do to get sudafed is show an I'd and sign your name. I hate taking it its like caffeine make me speedy but its hard to beat for unstuffing sinuses.

Blogger said...

Are you paying more than $5 / pack of cigarettes? I buy my cigarettes over at Duty Free Depot and this saves me over 60%.