Thursday, November 08, 2007

Organ Donor Driver's License

Today was interesting. I'd had plans to hook up with a friend of mine, Josh Pace, a reporter I got to know while he was covering the Moore beat for The Moore American. We've become friends over the last few years and go out to eat. We even went to The Transformers with my little guy, Chandler.

Well, this morning Chandler was kind of down. I've been working all day on Mondays and Wednesdays, and he's not used to not getting to see me on those days. Plus, he's been to the ER twice in the last week for his asthma.

We went the first time on Halloween night, which was when I discovered that the hospital staff dresses up. I'm still kind of undecided how I feel about that. It was weird being attended by witchy nurse. I mean, I'm there for Western drugs and I'm figuring she's got a bagful of home remedies. I'm wondering how I'm going to get Chandler to swallow an eye of newt or a salamander's tongue. Maybe I could pass it off as a glass-eyed Cheerio and a red licorice twist, you know?

And I had to wonder about the guys in the doctor outfits. Suppose one of them took us behind a curtained area and said, "Hey, look. The x-ray machine is broken, but I've got this nifty little camera. Why don't you hop up on that table and get undressed for me?"

I could see a problem.

Anyway, he was stuck with taking his lunch or eating spaghetti at school. I could see there was no love in his eyes. He'd obviously been attacked by a funsucker and left drained dry. So I invited him to lunch with us.

We were also joined by my 18-year-old who's in full-stride in his "I'm a poor college student," lunch mooching mode.

During lunch, we talked. Well, mostly we listened to Chandler. He trotted out an encyclopedic knowledge of strange animals he gleaned from The Suite Life of Zack and Cody and Guinness Book of World Records 2008.

I initially bought him Guinness at Wal-Mart one night while he still had his foot in a cast. I always put him in the buggy at that time so he wouldn't have to use crutches or risk getting stepped on or knocked down by adults. We were there for 45 minutes. He read to me from Guinness during the whole foray. It was pretty interesting stuff. I noticed a few adults who kind of hung with us an aisle or two while he finished off an article that caught their attention. Chandler even dealt with a couple of rebuttals regarding facts. But he's stubborn and stuck to his guns.

So anyway, we had the buffet while Chandler dealt out the facts about such animal wildlife as the masked booby (which, the first time he told me about it, led to all kinds of concerns on my part as to what he was looking at on the internet)

the world's largest rodent, the capybara

the world's smallest monkey, the pygmy marmoset

bearded ladies

and the world's tallest man.

Then we took him back to school.

It was at that point that Shiloh, my college student, told me he'd lost his driver's license and needed to get a duplicate. So we went to the tag agency.

And, since the computer system was down, we spent over an hour waiting for a duplicate license to be made.

While we were there, we ended up talking with a young stripper equipped with one of the most intriguing tramp stamps I've ever seen. And it was in full view of everyone at the tag agency.

At this time, Shiloh also elected to become an organ donor. I was of mixed feelings about that and I hadn't expected to get into that whole issue and have to think about my son in that context.

Before I could get too deeply into that, Josh said that he'd thought about donating his body to science. I told him he really didn't want to do that. He asked me why. I told him that the last thing you want to do is give a dead body to college-aged medical students. He was under the impression they just hollowed the body out and let them play with the organs.

I explained that no, the colleges got the whole body. And I've talked to guys who've been to medical school. They even showed me the pictures of their corpses they worked on all year. It was kind of harsh anyway, but some of the pictures they had showed the gags they did with the bodies. Makeup, disguises, poses, etc.

All while you're lying there dead and nude, revealed for all the world to see and recorded for, well, not for posterity, I can tell you.

I told Josh he'd be the center of attention in his own Weekend At Bernie's --only he'd be the unrated version. Not me. I know somebody's gotta do it. But I don't take pictures well as it is. I can only imagine how bad they would be if I were dead and nude.

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