Friday, February 19, 2010

Masterparkie Theater : Strange Festination

Hello and welcome to Masterparkie Theater. I'm Peter Dunlap-Shohl, and I'm your host this evening. Tonight we have a work of taut storytelling garnished with crackling suspense. We find our hero suffers the opposite of the problem now bedeviling Toyota. Instead of unexpected forward surges, our boy comes to abrupt unexpected stops. Come with us now, as, thanks to the technologic magic of the sophisticated ParkieCam you watch through the eyes of a Parkinson's patient as he attempts a simple walk down a street in Santa Fe.


ParkyBill said...

Have you ever seen my poem, "Ode to a Frozen Foot"?

As I sit down to write this, I am feeling pretty good.
Having had PD for 10 years, I feel better than I should.
The stiffness and the slowness are well handled I confess
All thanks to Levodopa and that thing called DBS.

I don’t have dyskinesia and I have no trouble dressing.
I’m grateful every day and thank God for every blessing.
I work at home more oft than not, in that way I’m in luck!
There’s just one thing to gripe about — the way my feet get stuck!

At lunchtime Gail and I go to the store to browse the deli
To get some ribs or chicken or something else to fill my belly.
She parks the car and we get out and I hobble towards the store.
My feet freeze to the ground as I get close to the door.

I look down at my shoes and they’re stuck there on the floor.
"What are you sissies scared about, it’s just a stupid door?"
My brain sends down a signal to my hesitating feet.
"Come on, you lazy tootsies, let’s go get something to eat!"

I think they are embarrassed as they turn loose of the floor
And they make their cautious way and proceed right through the door.
And now our goal’s is nearer as I hobble down the aisle
"I hope they have some meatloaf," I say with a hungry smile.

We’re making decent progress as we get close to the food.
I can almost taste the mac and cheese when... BAM! My feet are glued.
"So what’s the problem NOW?" I ask the feet I walk upon.
"The pattern on the floor has changed. It scares us," they respond.

I roll my eyes and start to rock to free my frozen feet.
My wife holds out her hand to help. (She loves me, ain’t she sweet?)
My feet, at last, break free from their invisible detention.
I hobble to the counter and make clear my lunch intention.

With food in hand we make our way to the checkout for to pay.
I’d like to take our food and go, my feet decide to stay.
"I’ve really had it with you guys," I say through gritted teeth.
"But there’s a RUG there on the floor," they whisper from beneath.

With mental calculations that would make an Einstein strain
My legs receive commands from my confused, beleagured brain.
"YOU’VE NEVER SEEN A RUG BEFORE?" My brain begins to shout.

My feet may be reluctant, but they know my brain’s the boss.
They free themselves and step into the street so we can cross.
Gail, she walks behind me ever ready to assist
To gently jab me in the butt if my feet again resist.

We’re almost to the car when the rain begins to fall.
It’s not a gentle shower, it’s a sudden summer squall.
I’m getting soaked, I cannot move, I’m frozen to the spot.
I look down at my soggy feet, I whisper "thanks a lot!"

Gail runs on ahead so she can bring the car around.
She opens up the door and I get in without a sound.
I’m wet, I’m miffed, my shirt is soaked, my feet squish in my shoes.
I’ll say this about Parkinson’s. It always does amuse.

Peter Dunlap-Shohl said...

That's beautiful, Parkybill. It brought tears to my pedal extremeties. Believe me,I've shuffled a mile in your shoes!

You probably know this already, but if you have a reliable confederate like your wife around, she can help by throwing a toe. Then you can write an ode to her feet instead of yours!

Thanks for the poetic posting,