Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Scared Silly

I read the scariest thing ever, with apologies to Stephen King, Dean Koontz and our own Master of Macabre Rob Walker. It isn't a book, but more of a pamphlet, a journal, a magazine as it were. Like a werewolf , it comes out once a month to turn my blood cold.

It is ... (shudder) ... something to scare a man out of his back hair.

I can barely tell you.

Its pages are so scary... so frightening ... terrifying ... and ... um ..., other words that describe fear. Fear that causes your muscles to petrify as chemicals of unhappiness surge through your body, springing up goose bumps along the way.

I must speak the name of this periodical, though my mouth refuses to utter its simple name... so I will type it instead with shaky fingers.

It is ... (eek) ... READER'S DIGEST.

Yes, you heard me.

Reader's Digest.

You scoff. I can tell ... only because I have incredible powers of perceptiveness (my wife snorts in disbelief). You mock my gentle wisdom ... the warning that I spread to save those who read this magazine for its insight, humor and stories of human courage.

But have you read the other parts of the magazine?

You know, those parts that come with an eight point font disclaimer that takes up a whole page or three ... that no one ever reads because it's an eight point font disclaimer that takes up a whole page or three.

The stuff having to do with ... health?

Yep, Reader's Digest is chock full of stuff dealing with what they laughingly call health. For with hypochondriacs like me, that's not a good thing. For you see, I am susceptible to the power of suggestion. If there's a mosquito in the room, I feel itchy. If someone yawns, I yawn. And if someone gets skin cancer, I start watching my moles with squinty-eyed suspicion.

I've learned all kinds of scary things about health by reading Reader's Digest. For instance, did you know that your bowels have a temper? I didn't. Why if you eat the wrong things, it might get irritable and go Postal on you. And I learned by reading RD's learned pages, that even though I might feel wonderful, cholesterol might ... even as I type ... be packing my arteries with stuff that will make them explode.

Do you know the signs of a heart attack? Me neither, until I read RD. Thanks to their friendly words, I know that the signs of a heart attack are chest or upper body discomfort, shortness of breath, cold sweat, nausea and lightheadedness. After reading this, I broke out into a cold sweat, clutched my hands to my chest which seized up so that I couldn't get a breath and almost passed out.

I also learned that back and joint pain might mean that I have prostate cancer, a rash might be Lyme disease, and that my severe headache was not from having teenaged girls, but more likely from an aneurysm. And my blurred vision isn't me getting old - it's macular degeneration that can be reversed by the wonderful drug Avastin, which will also treat my colon cancer. Lucky me.

So call me a hypochondriac, but I'm going to stop reading the medical stuff. I think I'll skip right to "Humor in Uniform."

(whistles tunelessly and reads).


I hurt my funny bone!


The Adventures of Guy ... written by a guy (probably)
The Next Adventures of Guy ... more wackiness

No comments: