Chiropractic Care…well, sort of

Okay, so I broke down and went to a Chiropractor. Now I’ve been to Chiropractors before. In fact, I believe they do good work and can heal certain muscular, joint and alignment issues. But after my husband’s constant barrage of scientific studies citing all kinds of devastating chiropractic mishaps, I’d pretty much sworn off them entirely.

Until last week, when my writing partner practically insisted I go see his Chiropractor or else stop bitching about my constant back pain. I succumbed to the not so subtle peer pressure and made the appointment.

The Doctor had asked me to bring my MRI films, X-rays of my back, and any doctors’ records I might have about my herniated disc (L5 S1 in case you were wondering.) This sent me into a slight panic since I am, without doubt, the least organized woman on the planet. I spent the next two days dismantling my house in search of those damn films and records.

Miraculously, I found a thick, overstuffed manilla folder labeled “Healthcare – Debra” crammed into my disorderly file cabinet. A cursory perusal of the folder showed various films, radiology reports, and several detailed drawings of recommended physical therapy exercises. I proudly tucked the folder into my tote and headed out apprehensively to meet the bone-cracking doctor.

After a lengthy interview, during which Doctor John, as he’s called, took a lengthy history from me and explained why chiropractic care could help me enormously, he asked to see the films. I happily complied and turned over the entire packet.

He paged through the documents carefully, offering a few compulsory, “mmm hmms,” and nodding thoughtfully. Then he pulled out the stack of films and began to inspect them one by one. I admit that his befuddled look was slightly alarming to me. I worried that perhaps he’d discovered something even more serious as he examined the magnetic images of my spine. Too fearful to ask, I simply sat, perched on the edge of my chair, awaiting his assessment.

He held up the final film, looked at me directly and said with a delivery as deadpan as Bob Newhart’s, “Thank you for bringing me your mammogram pictures. But I don’t think they’re going to be terribly helpful in relieving your back pain.”

I was mortified. OMG, how did I do that? What an idiot! He offered a few comic, yet tasteful comments about how we women always seem to work our mammary glands into any situation. But even his lighthearted, affable tone couldn’t minimize my embarrassment. After a while, I did regain my composure and we moved through the exam and treatment uneventfully.

I like this Doctor. I do. And I’m going back. Despite the fact that I’m certain to be the butt of humor at his next Chiropractic convention, and will forevermore be shorthanded in the office as the “breast lady.” I suppose it could be worse. I could have brought him a colonoscopy report.

Leggo my Eggo!

Stay away from my dinner!

I eat out a lot. Partly because I hate to cook. But even more because I abhor cleaning up. Yes, it’s expensive. Yes, it’s not as healthy as eating at home. But it’s fast, fun and makes my life a whole lot easier. But here’s the thing; I apparently missed the memo to all food service professionals regarding clearing away dirty dishes the nano-second they become “inactive.”

It happens everywhere, and it’s driving me batty. The minute you take your last bite, or someone seems to think you’ve taken your last bite, a person emerges out of the shadows and surreptitiously swipes your supper before you can say Wolfgang Puck. It’s particularly problematic if you were saving your orange garnish for a final palette cleanser or hoped to sop up some spaghetti sauce with a piece of leftover sourdough.

I’ve tried to remain silent on this subject and just go with the flow. But, A, I’m mentally incapable of going with the flow. And B, We hit an all time high on the annoyance Richter scale the other night and I just need to talk about it.

My husband and I had a lovely meal at the White Chocolate Grill in our neighborhood. The food was delicious, the waiter attentive and the atmosphere was elegant yet comfortable. All was well. Until we got to the final thirds of our entrees. That’s when the vultures began circling. One black clad server stealthily snagged the remainder of my husband’s rotisserie chicken as she swept by in such a smooth and fluid motion, it was as if she had performed a Houdini sleight-of-hand maneuver. Luckily his reflexes are sharp. He grabbed the plate back and asserted loudly that he was still working on his dinner. After a few stunned moments, we relaxed back into our meals. But as I distractedly raised my water glass to my lips, I noticed the remnants of my Ahi salad had been snatched. I called out to the young thief. But, alas, it was too late. He had disappeared into a sea of ebony outfitted employees. “I guess I’m finished,” I sadly conceded.

Then, as if carefully choreographed, servers approached, lifted and removed each and every plate, glass and utensil that adorned our two-top. My husband had to ask for a new water glass because someone had commandeered his as he carelessly lost sight of it while lamenting the loss of his sugar-snap peas. At one point, he was so irked that he placed a leftover empty salad plate at the edge of the table to tempt one of the passing waiters. But as soon as she eyed it and moved in for the kill, he swept his napkin over it and slid it to safety beneath the table. Then, not finding this at all amusing, she outstretched her hand like a stern school teacher who had discovered the classroom clown hiding a perilous pea-shooter. “I’m going to take it anyway,” she chastised, “so you might as well give it up.”

At this point, I looked around in search of cameras or a grip or gaffer in case we were victims of some new Ashton Kutcher reality show. But, lo and behold, I found none. We finally called over the manager and inquired about this over-the-top team effort to rid our area of dirty dishes. “Full hands in,” he replied professionally, “Full hands out. It keeps us efficient.” It wasn’t hard for us to read between these lines as we eyed the cue of hungry incoming at the hostess stand.

Before he got around to offering us a free bread pudding we didn’t want, we thanked him, laid down our cash and excused ourselves. After all, we know when we’re not wanted.