This year, we switched from a Medicare supplement plan to a Medicare Advantage PPO. And we will have saved thousands of dollars in medical, pharmaceutical, and related health bills this year alone.

As part of their medical management program, the insurer provides each member with a complete examination to ascertain that they are getting the proper care to address their individual needs.

Last week, I had my virtual appointment on Facetime with a medical doctor and had been advised that the procedure would take up to an hour. I was also told to be prompt and prepared, as the doctor was booked solid from morning to night every day. And I thought, what could be more boring than a job like that. But I knew that would change, as he was about to interview me.

In preparation for my appointment at 12:30, I sat in front of my computer screen, undressed down to my shorts, just as I would in my personal physician’s office. When the video connection was made and Dr. Comatose came on, he appeared shocked at my appearance. I ignored his reaction, thinking that he wasn’t expecting to see the body of a muscular hunk on an 80-year old.

He began with the rote questions about my eating and drinking habits. I told him I limit my drinking to one glass of wine at each meal – breakfast, lunch and dinner, and no more than two glasses while driving. He was keying my answers into his iPad, and really wasn’t paying attention to what I was saying. For me, that realization was like a license to steal. It would take too long to give you all the verbatim answers, but here are some of the highlights.


Are you currently using recreational drugs?

Not anymore. I once tried to get high on Ginger ale and Rogaine. For about a month, I had to wash my mouth out with shampoo.


Do you bruise easily?

Yes. I have this chronic issue with my ego.


Have you broken any bones in the last six months?

None of my own.


Do you ever experience difficulty breathing or shortness of breath?

Yes. Both before and after sex.


Do you have bouts with anxiety?

Yes. Both before and after sex.


How do you handle stress?

I find humor in every difficult activity and task that I must complete including this one. And the laughter dissipates the stress, every time.


Do you need help standing or walking?

Not since I started limiting my drinking.


Do you bleed easily?

Yes, financially, ever since Covid struck.


Do you have eczema or other skin condition?

Yes. The skin on my head doesn’t know where to grow hair, so it puts it all on my face instead of my scalp.


Have you ever had a stress test?

Do you mean like when I’m in the company of my ex?


Do you have any cognitive issues?

If you’re referring to frequent urination, yes.


Do you suffer from any mental health issues, like paranoia?

No. I’m too busy worrying about my neighbors, who are out to get me.


After 45 minutes of this banal banter, ‘Comey’, as I referred to him, came out of his zone and began laughing. He commented, “Well, this ends our interview. And I see what you mean about the humor.”

I answered, “Does that mean I can get dressed now?”