Wow. You talk about a buzz kill! Sharnell really knows how to break up a good party.
I was having a great week, y'all -- and was looking forward to an even better weekend. I was able to bask in the post-cocktail party glow. (My apologies to Dr. Adams; I didn't touch a drop in Jacksonville. Promise!) We had beaten Florida and I had enjoyed a glorious weekend on St. Simons with close friends and family. Life was good.
I was looking forward to a great weekend, too -- filled with food, fun and football -- three of my favorite things. I would even get an extra hour of sleep Saturday night, thanks to Daylight-Saving Time ending.
There would be Friday night football. It was Senior Night, too. This year would prove to be particularly poignant, because there is a good chance I will be graduating with the Class of 2012.
You know what I like most about high school football on Friday night? I mean other than the football game itself -- and the band -- and the cheerleaders. I like the concession stand. I could gain 10 pounds standing behind the bleachers inhaling the aroma of the hamburgers on the grill -- not to mention the hot dogs. And at our school they make nachos and fried chicken fingers and seasoned french fries! They still make popcorn the old-fashioned way, too.
Friday night lights are followed by Saturdays between the hedges -- and Saturday in Athens means tailgating. It is time, once again, to let the "Big Dawg" eat -- and the "Big Dawg," in this case, would be me. Fried chicken, country ham, pork barbecue -- you name it and I will eat it on a football Saturday -- and being down to a fifth-string tailback doesn't curtail my appetite one whit.
This week offered the bonus of following up Georgia's Homecoming contest with the Game of the Century -- between Alabama and LSU -- on prime-time television. Obviously such a special game requires a special array of food.
We always eat a big breakfast on Sunday -- and a big lunch -- in preparation for an afternoon of couch potatoing -- with pro football providing the background noise.
Those were my weekend plans -- before Sharnell dashed cold water all over them. OK. I know. Time to explain.
Sharnell is a very nice, very friendly and extremely professional radiation technologist at Northside Hospital. I paid her a little visit Thursday morning. Yes, I am still battling the stupid cancer that I thought would disappear with my radical prostatectomy in August. It didn't. But we're going to beat this thing -- we being God, the medical professionals and all the people who are good enough to keep sending prayers up on my behalf.
Sharnell and I were getting along famously at first. I learned that she was from Montezuma and a proud graduate of Macon County High School. I am familiar with Montezuma. It's a good place and produces good people -- like Sharnell. She completed her education in Chattanooga, Tenn. It's a nice place, too.
She was friendly and gentle and when she filled that big syringe full of radioactive gunk and when she stuck the needle in my arm, I barely felt it. I am a big baby about needles, too. Sharnell was on the verge of becoming my best friend.
And then she gave me my orders for the rest of the weekend. That's when she and I began to fall out. You see, I have to go back to the hospital Monday and Tuesday for a series of body scans, to see if we can trace the radioactive gunk and find out where those pesky cancer cells are hiding out. Apparently there are rules to follow when undergoing such tests.
First was the food thing. This nice young Montezuma lady forbade me to have beef, pork or chicken for five days. I could have fish as long as it wasn't fried. Why bother?
Are you kidding me? An entire football weekend without a burger, a piece of chicken or a barbecued pork pig sandwich?
And that wasn't the worst of it. She sent me to the store to pick up not one, but two, bottles of Magnesium Citrate and two Fleet -- well, you know what Fleet makes. I was supposed to start using the Magnesium Citrate Saturday morning.
Does she not know how far it is from Section 108, row 50 to the nearest men's room? Woe is me. When I voiced my displeasure, Sharnell asked me if I wanted to enjoy the football weekend or get well. I was reminded of the whole Jack Benny bit. A robber accosted the notorious cheapskate with the choice, "Your money or your life." Benny pondered a while before responding, "I'm thinking. I'm thinking."
I'll deal with Sharnell on Monday. Meanwhile, keep those prayers coming, y'all. They really do help.
Darrell Huckaby is a local educator and author. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. For past columns, visit www.rockdalecitizen.com or www.newtoncitizen.com.