Archives for 19 August 2014

Rumblings in the interior

I have been quiet (here, though noisy in other people’s comboxes) for a few days, because I have had another bout of annoying health.

Last Wednesday night, my usual neck-ache (now definitely diagnosed as ‘severe torticollis’) spawned a headache of the ‘Why is a work gang of little crimson devils driving a railway spike into my right temple?’ variety. I eventually decided that I needed to go to the hospital, but while I was trying to find some way of getting there that did not involve paying $300 for an ambulance, the pain increased to the point where I decided to give in and call 911. While on the phone, I lost the power of speech, except for the ability to scream in pain every time I tried to talk. They sent police, who decided (after I regained the ability to speak) that I was not in pain and had faked the whole thing; and they arrested me under the Mental Health Act (which gives the police powers of detention but not of arrest) and hauled me to the hospital in the local version of the Black Maria.

Once there, I could talk to rational people who did not presume to tell me what was not happening in my head. The loss of speech worried the duty physician (almost as much as it did me), and the upshot was that they CT-scanned my head, told me to take ibuprofen for my neck (I had run out; fixed now), and made me an appointment at the Stroke Prevention Clinic. I had one stroke three years ago; it would not do for me to have another.

The clinic, in turn, ran a battery of diagnostics, and set me up for an echocardiogram (performed today) and a two-day bout with a Holter monitor (now in progress). The echocardiogram revealed that I do actually have a heart, contrary to popular legend. Other results still to come.

In other news, I have managed to spill liquid into my laptop when a bottle of Coke Zero fizzed up on me. The computer still works, but the keyboard is damaged; the 1, Q, and Backspace keys do not work at all. I have plugged in a cheap external keyboard for now, but I am going to have to get the thing repaired. This will knock a day or two out of my working time in the coming week.

I regret to say that I have not accomplished much in the way of work during all this. I hope my 3.6 Loyal Readers (and Allied Benefactors) will forgive me.