By Pettus Read
Embarrassment would be an understated word for what I felt on a recent trip to the eye doctor. The only thing that saved my already questionable reputation was that most of the folks in the waiting room had dilated eyes and couldn’t see my life-changing predicament.
Let me explain.
For over four months I had waited to make a visit to my eye doctor due to trying to work his schedule around mine. My schedule was the easy part. It was his that left very little wiggle room due to the fact that he is one of the best in the business.
On this particular visit I had planned for a long wait in the waiting room. I have never understood why people get so upset because they have to wait. I brought along a magazine to read during my wait. I also made a stop at the restroom before I registered to help with my wait for the doctor.
Upon preparing to leave the restroom I dropped my magazine on the floor. While bending over to pick it up I heard a terrible ripping noise coming from the seat of my dark brown pants. Immediately, I uttered some words of disbelief, as well as a few of downright anguish.
Picking up the magazine and turning in somewhat of a semi-circle, I took my first look at the seat of my pants in the restroom mirror. They had torn from top to bottom; being of a dark brown color, the flash of my white undergarments peeking through helped give me the look of a white-tailed deer getting ready to clear a country fence.
Of course, my first instinct was to remain the rest of my life in this now safe area appropriately called a restroom. It was warm, had running water and could sustain life – at least until everyone went home and I could slip out.
When my common sense returned, after only a matter of seconds, I came up with a plan. I eased out of the restroom door, remaining turned close to the waiting room wall, as I walked to the registration window with the magazine placed strategically over my backside in a casual manner. My walk had somewhat of an unusual gait to it, but I avoided eye contact with patients waiting to see the doctor. I didn’t have to look at them. I could feel their beady eyes looking straight at my rear end.
I made it to the window and sort of turned with my back to the counter wall and talked to the receptionist over my shoulder. Of course, there was no way to get my appointment changed and I almost “blew my cover” when she asked me for my health card. When she looked at the card she told me that my records would need updating and that I would have to go back upstairs to the main lobby and have those changes made.
At that point I did what any red-blooded, extremely embarrassed country boy would do.
I begged for mercy.
The lady at the desk sympathized with my problem and saw to it that I was moved rapidly to the exam room. I guess she was also concerned about a man imitating a white-tailed deer in the waiting room and wanted that scene “behind” closed doors.
I’m just thankful that most of the folks sitting in the waiting room that day had dilated eyes, and they were not really sure if what they saw was really what they saw. Believe me, I had rather be a deer in the headlights any day than a white-tailed buck in a doctor’s waiting room.