Tuesday, July 2, 2024



The patient was brought to the operating room and placed supine. Safety confirmations were completed. The drapes were arrayed. The freshly prepped square of exposed flesh was an orange glaze under the hot white light. A scalpel was slapped into a gloved hand. Then a flurry of rote activity. The robot was docked. Everything proceeded from there according to meticulously planned habit. What more do you want to know? It all worked out. The details wouldn’t interest you. Like my life. I was born, I lived, made catastrophic errors, had a few things go right, caught some luck, found a bit of joy and plenty of suffering. Someday someone I love will mumble a few kind words over my fallen form. Or so I hope. What more do you really want to know? You were asleep through the whole thing, anyway. Or you were out in the waiting room reading a magazine. I meant to tell you all about it when I got home from the hospital. But I never really got home. Was always working. Or worried about not working enough. Would get so tired I wouldn’t feel like thinking let alone talking. Started to dictate all my notes using a template. Every operation sounded exactly the same.


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