The clinic we go to called me last week to let me know I'm due for my annual medicare physical, and made me an appointment for today. I was told to wear a mask. When I got there, I saw everyone had a mask on, even the nurses in the exam room. First of all, I filled out a form with questions like "do you feel safe at home" and "have you fallen in the last six months". I have no problem with that.
When I was escorted into the exam room, a nurse took my vitals as always. But when she's finished that, she tells me she's going to give me three words and see if I can remember them later. That's the part that makes me nervous.
Cliff had his first Medicare physical three or four years ago; for some reason, even though I'm a year older than he is, the clinic never called me that year. But Cliff told me about the three-word test, and said he only got one word right. At the time I thought, "No way will I ever pass that test. I couldn't remember people's names worth a hoot when I was young." So I worried the rest of that year and never got a call, but the next year I did, and as I thought about the word-test, I came up with a solution: I love stories. I remember stories, and story-tellers, for decades after I hear them. So I decided when that nurse gives me my words and tells me to repeat them, I'll quickly write a one-sentence story in my head with those three words.
As easy as that might seem, there's one problem: You have to be a very quick story-writer, because the minute you repeat your three words, the nurse will distract you with questions about unrelated questions about your health. Today's words were sunrise, banana, and chair. Instantly I thought, "I ate a banana in the sunrise sitting in a chair." And folks, when she asked me what my words were, that sentence is what I gave her. She gave me a large smile, and I said, "That's the only way I'd ever remember the words."
"Hey," she said, "we don't care how you remember them, just so you know them when we ask."
Feel free to use my word trick, my senior friends. It's even been approved by a nurse. And now you younger folks know what's in your future, so you'd better learn to make stories up real fast in your head! I could write a book on what your future holds, but you don't want to hear it, believe me. It's better to be surprised by leaks and squeaks and tired bones that to have thoughts floating around in your head making you worry; besides, you might luck out and die young.
I'm kidding. Be good to yourself, won't you?
|Cliff mowed Saturday|
|As I walk around what's left of our tiny pond, it's fun to see all the varmint tracks.|