So this week I was reading Spin, the Hugo award-winning novel by Robert Charles Wilson, in which mysterious aliens give Earth the Krikkit treatment by encasing it in a “membrane” that induces an extremely steep time differential between what’s inside and what’s outside. Hilarity ensues.
So recently we finally watched Red Eye, Wes Craven’s romantic comedy in which Cillian Murphy and Rachel McAdams meet cute at an airport, have a nice little romance on the plane, and break up when they land, only to reconcile when Murphy realizes he can’t live without her and tracks her down at her father’s house to ask for his permission to marry her.
This week’s Teaser Tuesday comes from Wonder Boys, by the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Michael Chabon. This is a book I actually finished quite some time ago, but which I’ve been saving for after my series about The Event was finished.
Since that series is now complete, here is your long-deferred Wonder Boys teaser.
Although I had been discharged, that wasn’t the end of the recovery process. As previously noted, I had to stay on the nimodipine for another three weeks, which meant waking up every four hours to take two gigantic pills. I’ve never had so many alarms set on my phone in my life. (The tone I chose for these alarms was the “Barking Dog” sound, because that was the least jolting one I could find. After 20 years of having dogs around, you get used to all the barking.) Annoyingly, my “hip flask” refused to adhere to the same schedule as my medication, so in between the times when my phone was barking at me, I had to get up at odd hours to empty that thing out. As a result I didn’t get more than two or three consecutive hours of sleep for nearly a month, and I doubt my wife did either.
Once I was well enough to leave ICU, the hospital transferred me to the “step-down unit”, also called Telemetry. (If you never heard of a unit called “Telemetry”, you’re not the only one.) I was moved by wheelchair on Saturday evening, schlepping most of my stuff—my blanket and pillow from home, the get well cards I had accumulated, the posters made by our friends’ daughter, pictures of the animals, and, of course, Substitute Charlee—on my lap. The rest of the stuff was transported in a bag by a courier, A.K.A. my wife.
I was in the ICU for a total of nine days while they kept my blood pressure very tightly controlled and checked me daily for vasospasms. (They got a concerning doppler reading one time, so off I went with Substitute Charlee for another CT scan; it did show vasospasms were occurring, but I remained asymptomatic, and scanned clean the next day.) My cousins and a few friends continued to drop by to keep me company, which was nice, and I had a series of terrific ICU nurses to take care of me. After a few days in ICU they decided to take out my IV and put in a subclavian PICC line, so they could administer medications and draw blood without having to stick me all the time. That was a relief, although the process of getting it put in was far from fun. Once the PICC line was there I mostly forgot about it; funny what you can get used to when you have to, and when the alternative is multiple jabs with sharp pointy objects.