Wednesday, September 7, 2011


A Conversation Held at 12:30 am in the Fairmont Rehab Facility

Having returned from emptying my urinal, the nurse pulls aside the privacy curtain holding a small, plastic cup full of pills, a package of thin plastic tubing and a large wad of gauze. I sit up, groggy, focused warily on the tubing.

"Okay Mr. Robinson, time for your IUC."

"What is that for?"

"The catheter will help you go to the bathroom."

"I go to the bathroom fine already. You just emptied my urinal."

"Oh, that's right. I just emptied it, didn't I? Let me check something."

She leaves briefly, reemerging through the peach translucent curtains.

"Okay Mr. Robinson, take your pills then."

"I'm not Mr. Robinson."


"My name isn't Robinson, it's Brehmer."

"Oh it is? Gosh, it's a good thing you're more awake than I am."

She leaves, taking the pills, tubing and gauze to the bed across from me, where Mr. Robinson waits with a full bladder, paralyzed from the waist down.

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