Tuesday, January 26, 2010

This is Casey...

Casey is giving me this sideways glance, because he is trying to figure out how pissed I might be. He ate my flutter valve. What's a flutter valve you may ask? Well, one of the things they work on after heart surgery is getting your lungs to work properly again. Never mind that your chest is stitched back together with wire and glue, those lungs have to expand and contract in order to keep the fluid out. I get it, I understand. In the hospital, the nurses and doctors would constantly remind you to use the two pulmonary toys issued to you, a flutter valve that works on the blowing side of your lung capacity, and another torture toy, of which I do not know the name of, that you suck on.

The one you suck on is a killer. It's like that carnival gimmick for the strongest man, where you slam a great big wooden sledge hammer into a small flat plate at the bottom of a long tower with insults printed at different levels, that shout out at you if you aren't coordinated enough to ring the bell at the top. The suction toy works much the same way, except, there are no insults, just large format numbers that stare back at you while you're turning red trying to get this blue hockey puck to float up above 2500. I am still at 1750. I suck in more than one way in this story.

Back to the flutter valve incident. The flutter valve makes noise when you blow on it, kind of sounds like a horse whinny when you blow through it. You're supposed to blow on it as long and as forceful as you can. As I said the nurses and doctors were quite assertive in their lecture about my use of both pulmonary toys daily when I was released from the hospital. So I used them religiously, you know, on Sunday for about an hour, but not every Sunday, because of the weather, a headache, or the car wouldn't start. Okay I wasn't so faithful to the program. On Sunday, (church day by the way), my lungs seemed to be giving me a problem, so I fumbled through the drawer next to my recliner to find the damn thing buried under the pile of hospital and doctor bills we have been receiving. I figured I would flutter, since I didn't mind that as much as being insulted by the sucking machine for under achievement.

Yesterday, my lovely wife drove me to town to get a haircut. I had used the flutter valve that morning and left it on the table next to my recliner when we left home. Casey, one of our three dachshunds, is a seven year old standard size long haired dapple. I say standard size but the maniac is about 25 lbs. His official AKC puppy papers say he is a miniature. We all know that couldn't be wrong, it was certified by the AKC. At any rate, Casey has separation anxiety issues. If we leave for more than a few hours, he looks for something he can seek revenge on. He never chews anything if we are home, but let us leave in the car, and he finds something to let you know, he doesn't like it.

The flutter valve was laying on the floor by the recliner when we came back from town. I heard Teri say "uh oh," as I stopped at the bathroom coming in the door. He got the flutter valve, she said. Still in the bathroom, a smile appeared on the ghostly face in the mirror while I washed my hands. As I came out of the hallway, I saw Casey sitting in the chair flashing me that all knowing sideways glance he has. Dutifully, I scolded him for his total disregard for our personal property, his childish notion of revenge, and general bad dog behavior. Casey dutifully looked back, cowered and wagged his tail.

It's over, another religious icon lost among the rubble of the Buzzard's Loft. Teri picked up on my disappointment almost immediately. Nothing gets by that woman! The whole ordeal left me and Casey so distraught and tired, we decided to go downstairs and take a nap.


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