Friday, November 02, 2018

Why I don’t show Cliff his doctor bills

We got a bill in the mail yesterday from urology doctor.  I usually deal with doctor bills myself, because Cliff is offended by them; I just pay them and get it over with.  However, since Cliff has been getting some mail about how to prepare for a colonoscopy, I tossed this bill down by his usual sitting spot without thinking.  When he finally got around to opening it, he exploded:  “What’s this about!?!  I didn’t get anything done that would cost over $7,000.  All I’ve done in this guy’s office is get my hormone shot.  If I have to pay that much, I’m not getting any more.”

“Oh yes you are,” I said.  

Right then and there I knew I’d messed up.  “Cliff, it’s probably legit.  If it makes you feel better, call them tomorrow and ask about it.  But you may as well just let me pay it, because you have no idea how expensive medical costs can be.”  

He called this morning.  Sure enough, that’s how much it costs for his shot.  Well, not really.  That $7,000 is adjusted to $150 for our part, which I’ve never understood.  Oh well.  They may be getting paid a little at a time, because winters are difficult, what with the propane we’re going to be buying before long.  But I’m sure if we make it through December, we’ll be fine, to quote Merle Haggard.

Here’s a free association thing that played with my mind today, probably because I’m re-reading a Lucas Davenport book:  It’s the word Davenport that stuck with me today and planted me back smack-dab in the middle of my Iowa childhood.  When I was small, my mom called our couch a davenport.  That’s the only way I ever heard the word used until I was perhaps four or five, maybe longer.  Because we lived in Iowa, though, I began hearing people mention a town called Davenport.  Every time someone said the name of the city, I thought what a strange thing, to name a town after a piece of furniture.  

I think by the time we moved to Missouri when I was in the third or fourth grade, I had started calling them a couch... you see, my mom also sometimes called the same piece of furniture a “studio couch”, which she later told me I mispronounced “Skudeeay couch” as a toddler.  I later learned such a piece of furniture was also called a sofa, but I’ve never used that term.

Yes, this is what my mind does.  Just say one wrong word, it’ll spark a memory and I’ll puzzle over it the rest of the day.  And then my readers are subjected to such nonsense.  Keep following my blog, folks.  When dementia sets in, it’ll REALLY get interesting.

My Iowa memories are some of the happiest.  We knew all the neighbors.  My parents took their turn at having card parties back when Canasta was popular, and there were always plenty of refreshments that made it a good time for me.  Throughout my whole childhood I never had a babysitter, so I went everyplace my parents went.  Sometimes the neighbors would get together and perform a play down at the Methodist church.  The plays were always humorous, right up my alley.  I loved seeing my mother as a comedy actress.  Sometimes as an added attraction, my sister’s mother-in-law, who lived down the road from us, would do a jig dance for everybody, too.  Christmas programs were held at the Methodist church, too.  Since Church of Christ didn’t celebrate Christmas as a holiday (because it wasn’t mentioned in the Bible), I enjoyed the programs immensely, as well as the fruits, nuts, and candy that were handed out.  Not that I lacked for fruits, nuts, and candy at home.  We had plenty of Christmas at home!

If a telephone line was crossed or down, I’d ride with Daddy to watch him fix it with a special pole made for that purpose.  See, if two lines got crossed, it really mixed people up, and I’m not sure whether you could even call anyone or not.  If my sister were closer, she’d probably remember the workings of the telephone business; she used to help out at the switchboard.  Being 16 years older than I, she recalls many names and places I don’t remember.  

Oh, and we had the best Fourth of July displays down in front of Hampell’s store.  Everybody bought a few fireworks, we pooled them, and had a blast.  I loved Hampell’s store.  As you walked inside, there were stacks of various kinds of feed piled up high.  I loved to climb up on top of that mountain of feed sacks and just watch the goings-on in the store.  This was when feed sacks were pretty cotton prints.  Most of my clothes were made out of those sacks.  One time I asked Mother if she could make me some matching panties, which she did.  They weren’t comfortable, though.  Bad idea.  

We’ve getting a little rain, very little, this morning.  Cliff and the grandson have gone to Lowes for something they need for a project they’ve been working on.  I’ll be fixing dinner when they return.  I’m going to make hash using some leftover beef roast and potatoes.

We took Gabe to the groomer yesterday.  He was very excited to arrive, even trying to push the door open himself.  He didn’t care at all that we were leaving him.  I love the fact that he likes it there.  He’s over his upset stomach, apparently, for which I’m thankful.

Yours truly, Donna


  1. It sounds like you had a great childhood. We had a couch growing up!

  2. I love hash! You are the only person I know that calls it that besides me

  3. I think we've called it a sofa, couch and davenport at different times. My parents even used the word daveno. :) Medical care is outrageous in this country. I don't even want to speculate how much Patt's cancer treatment cost. Chemo was costly, as well as the shots, the hospital stays, etc.

  4. Medical costs are expensive. I'm thankful for medicare and supplemental insurance.

  5. I remember davenport being used for the couch... my husband occasionally uses "ice box" for the refrigerator because they did have an "ice box" when he was child... we ate hash often; if I ever went out for breakfast and it was on the menu, I ordered corned beef hash. I am very thankful that Medicare covers the cost of the expensive drug I have to take.

  6. Oh yes.... we always had a "davenport" while I was growing up. Today I call it a "couch" but once in awhile the word "davenport" will sneak out. I must say it brings back good memories when it does. I can so relate about the bills too, Donna, but it's opposite with us. My hubby has the infinite patience to deal with them and those who send them. Not me... in the least! :-/ Lovingly, Andrea xoxo

  7. I knew what a "Davenport" was from television shows, but it was always a couch in our house. And that, technically (or at least etymologically) is a misnomer; it should have been a sofa. A "couch" is actually something you would lie down on or recline on. I picture the Victorian couches that ladies would recline upon, or a "fainting couch" from Regency/Georgian times, with only one arm.

    My mind quite often goes off on tangents like this, and I love following along on the tangents that your mind travels. :)


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