Yeah, I just made that up. Don’t ask what it means, it’s like a koan or a haiku or something cool like that. You’re supposed to decide what it means. Meanwhile I’m taking all the complicated steps involved in doing a simple thing.
Something over 45 years ago my brother drove me to a small storefront containing a shop that smelled heavily of fiberglass resin. There a couple of gruff guys made a plaster cast of my stump and took some measurements. A couple of weeks later I limped out clumsily on my very first prosthetic leg, and my brother was $500 poorer. I won’t say it was an entirely pleasant experience, but it was refreshingly simple compared to what the bureaucratized process has devolved into.
First of all, five hundred bucks won’t buy you a drawer full of new stump socks anymore. I don’t know what a new prosthetic leg costs – and I predict that if I succeed in scoring a new one that works, I still won’t know. I do know the process has become more complex.
Yes – today I made an appointment to acquire the doctor’s prescription that will allow me to keep another appointment with the person or people I sincerely hope will build me a new limb. I had unrealistic visions of just popping into the local po-folks clinic, tapping on my obviously artificial left leg and asking a doctor with a wink and a nod whether he could see fit to write me a scrip for another, newer one. Instead, I’m losing most of Thursday to an “annual wellness exam” which is apparently more or less dictated by Medicare. Jesus – I’m perfectly healthy. I just limp a little more than I’d like.
Nevertheless, let it be known that progress – of a sort – has been made.