You will have to excuse me, as today’s Bleat is mostly cancelled due to pain. Obviously I can type; obviously, I am capable of putting words together. SO WHERE’S THE FREE HOT DISH? I don’t know why you call it that. I wouldn’t. But it’ll do, I suppose.

Hot Dish was the name my parents’ generation gave to mush - hamburger, rice, some glopsauce, and maybe mushrooms (canned) if you were adventurous. I don’t even think I could eat that right now, but not because it wasn’t delicious; it was, in that salty-gloppy sense. I just can’t eat. If the teeth touch it is . . . instructive.

Did I say pain? I meant "discomfort." That's the official term. "So you're having some discomfort?" No, discomfort is a shoe too tightly tied. This is a foot severed at the ankle.

Anyway. Poor daughter. This morning I was in a snappy mood, which worked off last night’s snappy mood. Recall how I said she had a double-sided tri-fold brochure to print? At 11:55 she got out of bed, and said with trepidation that I know you’ll be bad but there’s another page she has to print.

Why, honey! Of course. By which I mean you’re right, of course I’m mad. Not MAD mad, but that Towering Sense of Displeasure with a million black streamers rippling from the parapets. So I had to go through the mental process of figuring out how to print the double-sided trifold thing to match up with the other one. Gah.

Went downstairs and turned on the TV and was amused to see I’d left off watching “They Live,” which is The Matrix except with a wrestler. Took some OTC pain pills and went to bed.

Unfortunate night, leading to a grim morning when I made the mistake of having breakfast. The pain was so great I actually slammed the plate on the counter. This led to a call to the dentist to see if this was within the parameters of the experience, and while yes, it was, why, let’s get you something with a bit more oomph. So now I am on Vicodin, which should probably kick in within a few minutes.

So. That’s that. And ouch! But it’s all part of the game we call “Teeth,” and everyone plays eventually.


Vicodin #2 seems to have had the desired effect. Unfortunately, it has effed me up to the point where typing and typing as fast as possible seems the only way to maintain grasp on reality. If you can imagine feeling like you’d just eaten a pound of opium, then topped it off with a brick of raw meth, well, there you go: simultaneously distant and soothed and REALLY REALLY HERE, RIGHT HERE, VERY MUCH HERE.

Amusement: when I went to the store to fill the script they didn’t have it. Ha ha! Little screw-up. The pharmacist said “did they call it in or fax it in?”

I wanted to say “Fax, because this is 1997,” but no. They phoned it in.

“Maybe it’s on the machine,” he said. The older pharmacist picked up the phone to check the messages.

There were quite a few messages, it seems. He took notes, and more notes, and consulted the machine, and so on. Eventually they found it. There should be a special button on the pharmacist’s phone that blinks a certain color when they have a prescription for a pain medication - oh, I don’t know, SHRIEKING CRIMSON - and this informs them that someone might be in the mood to get the stuff ASAP. Because someone picking up pain meds might be in, what’s the word?

It’ll come to me. Hold on. Damned pills. PAIN, that's it.

Soooo I had some time to kill, and wandered to the vet to refill the dog’s medicine. They can’t boost his joint-pain pills, but they added a general over-all pain medication, which is good. (The clerk at the counter was checking his file, and got *that look* when she saw his age.)

Back to the drugstore. Was informed that my insurance does not cover the strength my dentist had requested, possibly under the National Unaffordable Care Act’s provisions concerning, and I quote from the language of the statute, “the really good stuff,” so I was bumped down to something that meant I had to take two instead of one. I don’t know why I’m typing this. I don’t know why I think you could possibly be interested, except that if I don’t type, I will find that -

Oh! I know what I was going to say. Remember last year’s Mystery Sound? At night I’d hear a noise that sounded like someone pounding a piece of wood exactly eight times, and it was always at night between 10:00 and 10:40? Turned out to be the neighbor’s sprinkler system hitting the fence. Well, last night I heard a whining sound, culminating in a tortured shriek. I’d hear it, then silence, then a few minutes later, same thing. What. the hell? Finally went up the block to investigate, whereupon I heard the sound behind me, and realized:


Specifically, the roof. I immediately deduced it to be ventilation fan, which possibly had something stuck in it, or was broken. Emulating the bold decisive leadership of President Madagascar, I shut down everything. An hour later, again: same sound. But I had shut down all the fans! Except the one in the oven. Could oven-venting be sufficient to make this ungodly noise?

Apparently so. When I went to bed that night I noticed that the room-tone of the house was amiss - dead silent. It was, as I’ve noted before, the Enterprise engines had been turned off. The comforting sound of sound. Without it, the world seemed unnaturally quiet.

Today, trying to give myself something to do instead of grimace and weep because a hot spike has cleft a back tooth, driven by the force of Vulcan himself, I turned on all the fans to see if one of them is the direct cause. I would shut them off in sequence to isolate the culprit.

The sound did not return.

So there’s no explanation for the noise.


Say, there's a new 8-page site up in Miscellany - just hit that button to enjoy "USELESS," a tribute to an 1883 Medican Journal. See you around!






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