Indoor plumbing

April 5, 2010

Audrey watched the freeway traffic from the clinic’s third floor window. The mid-day flow of vehicles was quick and unimpeded despite the rain. Every few seconds she would pick out a particular car or truck as it entered her range of vision and watch it continue north on the 205, take the interchange west on the 84, or exit onto the street below. A pickup truck was exiting now, loaded with two blue portable toilets.

“What could you possibly find funny out there?” Carl asked.

“Potty humor,” Audrey said, and sat with him in the waiting area, which was full of light and light of people. The gastoenterology clinic took up the whole third floor of the medical building.

Carl had completed his colonoscopy prep at home without incident—without unexpected incident—and only minor discomfort. Audrey could’ve dropped him off here and come back later, but she had chosen to stay.

“Carl Pullet?” The nurse scanned the potential owners of the name until Carl stood up. He gave Audrey a last thumb’s up before the door closed behind him.

Audrey moved to a chair by the wall. She unloaded her jacket and tote bag on the next chair and set her coffee on the end table. Laptop open. Ready. All set to resume editing the beast. Ready and set… Carl was probably changing into his hospital gown now. If he was nervous he’d done a good job hiding it.

Ten minutes passed. The blank screen held no trace of the gibberish she had deleted. Maybe the beast didn’t want to be rewritten here. That was fine; she could research an idea for a new online magazine piece using the clinic’s free wi-fi… Carl was probably on the gurney now, wheeling down the hall… everything would be fine… Debra wasn’t fine… Debra had waited too long…

Audrey had to write something. Anything. She gazed out the window, hummed quietly along and let her fingers fly.

Indoor Plumbing
by Audrey Pullet

It’s a Monday and it’s raining and it’s very hard to concentrate,
and I’m thinking of some things I didn’t always appreciate,
things like driving on the freeway in an old imported SUV,
and the over-fifty screening called a colonoscopy.

Indoor plumbing, guess it’s nothing you can sing about,
but indoor plumbing isn’t something you can live without.
Don’t take a chance, baby, take a test and you will see—
how’s your indoor plumbing? Honey, get your colonoscopy.

Well, I’m talking to the doctor and he’s telling me you’re okay,
but you’re still a little groggy from the screening you had today.
So I’ll take you home and park you on the sofa to watch TV,
and tomorrow you’ll be glad you had your colonoscopy.

Indoor plumbing, guess it’s nothing you can sing about,
but indoor plumbing isn’t something you can live without.
Don’t take a chance, baby, take a test and you will see—
how’s your indoor plumbing? Honey, get your colonoscopy.
Honey, get your colonoscopy, baby, get your colonoscopy.

©2010 Pam Wells

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