“Routine Surgery” By: Brad G. Garber

Surgical Staff: Very tall, with blue/cotton/clothing.

Procedure: Beakers, test tubes, infrared spectrometer, heat up the rice, add tomato sauce, do “The Twist,” do some burpees, draw blood, slice the avocado and first layer of epidermis, laugh heartily.
Right Knee Arthroscopic Partial Medial Meniscectomy with Chondroplasty of the Patella Patient Profile (or was it a left shoulder arthroplasty?) … no, wait, maybe it’s a gall bladder removal…shit, I don’t remember!:

[Setting the Scene]:
This is a 59-ish-year-old male. Refer to note in patient chart for documentation of history and physical. (I don’t want to have to repeat myself, dammit!). The patient has failed previous non-operative treatment, such as mastering the baking of egg turnovers and tracking ferrets through the Oregon Coast Range. Surgery is recommended because, without it, patient will sit around with bourbon and write inane poetry. The alternatives, risks and benefits of surgery were discussed with the patient, such as, impotence, headaches, toe fungus, armpit fungus, crotch fungus, mushrooms, certain death. The patient verbalized understanding of the risks as well as the alternatives to surgery… “WAIT! You mean I may never be able to watch the ducks fuck in the backyard?” The patient wished to proceed with operative intervention, after chewing on peyote, drinking a quart of vodka, masturbating one last time, eating a steak and flashing a laser light into the universe. A signed and witnessed (by three witches and a dwarf) informed consent was placed on the chart, showing a steady increase in the physician’s stock portfolio. Prior to initiation of the procedure (see above), a time-out was performed. Patient had to sit naked, in the corner of the surgical theater (cheering from the balcony), for 60 minutes without moving a muscle, while the surgical team drank beer and played backgammon: patient identification and proposed procedure were verified, making fun of body parts. The operative site was verified by the patient (as he was passing out) and marked by the surgeon. DVT (“diatomaceous vomit threshold”) risk assessment completed and reviewed by the next patient in the waiting room. Knee high compression stockings applied (against very vocal objection by the patient) and Pneumatic compression device applied.


Pre-OP Diagnosis:
Acute tear of the posterior horn medial

Post-OP Diagnosis:
Spring time bursting forth of small insects and the burning desire to eat croissants in a bistro in Spain

Anesthesia: Three glasses bourbon, a bowl of pot, two Vicodin tablets, a bowl of white sugar and a last-second orgasm.


Knee…”Yup, it’s there!”
“Oh look! Here’s a small rodent! And, over to the side we see an image of Jesus Christ.”
The remainder of the exam showed no abnormalities.

Description of Procedure:

Patient Positioning: We twirled the patient around, poking him. Could not elicit a giggle. Must have been the vodka. Finally, we decided to try a new position, just to make things interesting. We put him on the floor and ran out to get some bamboo stalks to duct tape the knives to.

– The patient was placed in the supine position on the floor. All body parts were well padded and protected to make sure there were no pressure points, and to focus the females. The surgical area was prepped and draped in the appropriate sterile fashion (boiling water, followed by herbicides and fungicides from the local nursery). A tourniquet of left-over rubber tubes, from the still in the lab, was applied before the sterile prep. The tourniquet was placed on the proximal thigh, on the distal neck, on the left big toe and the nuts. The extremity was exsanguinated, beriverated, hangutankinated, waminbinuted and slavinated with an Esmarch bandage, and a pneumatic tourniquet, with 300 lbs. of torque was applied by Spanish bull.


Port Placement and Arthroscope Insertion:

Port of Portland
Arthroscope inserted, again and again.

Arthroscope and Instrument Removal:
– The instruments (tubas, kettle drums, clarinets and an ancient Middle Eastern gourd) were, finally, removed.

Wound Closure:
– The arthroscopic portal sites were closed with use of white glue, a waving of hands, some gelatin from strawberries and an impromptu reading of the doctor’s screen play.

Brad lives, writes, hunts for mushrooms and snakes, and runs around naked in the Great Northwest.  He fills his home with art, music, photography, plants, rocks, bones, books, good cookin’ and love.  He has published poetry in Three and a Half Point 9, Pine + Basil Arts Journal, Meat for Tea, The Valley Review, Front Range Review, Spank the Carp, Dark Matter Journal, Dirty Chai, Coe Review, Gambling the Aisle, Black Fox Literary Magazine, Ray’s Road Review and other quality publications. 2013 Pushcart Prize nominee.   

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