mysterious doctors

Mysterious Ailments afflict some people. Ailments the very existence of which many doctors deny, not in so many words, of course, but you can just tell that behind those bulging eyes is a brain steeped in the melancholic humour of doubt. Oh, they are very good at diagnosing ailments the very existence of which many patients deny. But not so good at diagnosing ailments for which no high-priced remedial pharmaceuticals exist.

People with Mysterious Ailments tend to go doctor-hopping, or doctor-shopping if you prefer. If the aflictees don't like what one doctor has to say, well then, they go looking for anyone who will tell them what they want to hear.

Many if not most if not all Mysterious Ailments are unknown to medical science, or at least unknown to many who call themselves "doctor". But known to some, apparently, if they are to be believed as they would have their patients believe.

Mysterious Ailments beget Mysterious Doctors. Oh, you'll know one when you see one. Mysterious Doctors have sinister laughs, and rub their hands together in glee a lot. Sometimes they wear white coats, other times not. They say things like "Mmmmm" and "tut, tut" and "aligned" and "bioenergy" and "allopathic" and "morphic resonance". They use a lot of words ending in "itis" or even "aye, 'tis". They grow goatees to cover their pimply chins. Their eyes bulge. They have lots of hair growing in their nostrils. They have very bad breath.

By gum, this is a whole lot of mysterious shit!

Mysterious Doctors prescribe mysterious if not altogether bizarre treatments, including but not by any means limited to ingesting boiled granny tampons, blood-letting until the patient is as white as a ghost, constraining the patients within a tight metal tube, surgical removal of Mysterious Organs the patient never even knew Ze had, cutting the patient's brain into two halves (very callous, colossal corpses) and many many more, each more mysterious than the next.

Many of these Mysterious Treatments involve deer penis and octopus gall bladder, and bear paws, and fingers of birth-strangled babes, but don't let that put you off. Some of these Mysterious Treatments involve sticking things up peoples' bums, and walking barefoot over hot coals, but don't let that put you off either.

My cousin had a Mysterious Ailment, once. (You tend not to get them more than once). In fact, to be specific, he had a Mysterious Stomach Disorder. He'd suffered agonising pain for many years, day in day out. Nausea. Runny stools. Vomiting. You name it. He'd tried everything, but nothing had worked. Laxatives. Special diets. (Mysterious Diets, actually). Detox Programs of all shapes and sizes. Nothing worked. Nada. Zip. Zero.

Anyway, in despair he eventually consulted a Mysterious Doctor, who rubbed his hands together in glee, said "Tut, tut", and sent my cousin off to a Mysterious Hospital for a Mysterious Treatment called an endoscopy which involved sticking a long tube down his gullet.

Well, to cut a long story short, on the day that he was admitted, the hospital was offering a "two-for-one" deal, where you could come in to the hospital with one ailment, and leave the next day with two. In the case of my cousin, he was admitted with a Mysterious Stomach Disorder, and left the next day with pleurisy, thereby fulfilling the terms of the special offer. The pleurisy had been caused by stomach juices leaking into his lungs, thanks to a mysteriously inadequate performance on the part of the Mysterious Chirurgeon (mysterious word for Surgeon).

Anyway, to cut a long life short, the pleurisy turned to pneumonia plus a bit of a MSRA golden staph infection and my cousin died, in gruesome agonising pain, screaming for the mother he'd never had, like this: "mmmammmaaaargh…"!

My Cousin had no surviving family or relatives other than myself. So I had to make the funeral arrangements. I googled "funeral arrangements, non-denominational", wrote down the address, got in my car and drove off.

Within fifteen minutes I was sitting in the office of a Mysterious Undertaker…

Copyright © S R Schwarz 2007. All rights reserved.

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