The perils of drinking pineapple juice in the pub

You probably want to know how my appointment at the Cancer Centre went yesterday. I’ve been holding out on you long enough. Let’s not keep you waiting any longer.

We arrived early despite construction on the route to the hospital. That’s because we allowed one hour for our 15-minute journey. Remember J.’s motto: “If you aren’t early you’re late.” The appointment started and ended punctually, so we did not even reach the parking maximum. What’s the saying? 7 dollars saved is 7 dollars earned? That’s it.

What’s that? You wanted to know about the appointment itself?

The visit was lovely. The very kind nurse, whom we had not met before, beckoned us before J. had finished filling out my form. (As an aside, I forgot to confirm that J. had checked the “Itchiness” box, but I trust she did.) After we discussed how I’d been doing, the nice nurse asked me whether I’d been drinking. “Ha ha,” I responded.

Then we met with Dr. Blood, who had the most gorgeous shoes on. After discussing her footwear, she asked us all about our trip. Then we heard details about her upcoming vacation, which sounds fabulous.

Could I get to the point? But isn’t this the point?

Then, just like the nurse, Dr. Blood asked me whether I’d been drinking. Why was everyone asking about my alcohol consumption? Turns out my liver enzymes had inexplicably jumped since they were last tested. Elevated liver enzymes may indicate excessive happy hour participation.

My fair readers, you know I don’t drink. I never drink. Drinking is strongly contraindicated for those with a bum liver. So when Dr. Blood jokingly suggested I’d spent a little too much time in the pub, I chuckled again, whereupon J. raised her hand and said: “That would be me.” That gal of mine doesn’t miss a beat, does she?

Were you aware that over time women who live together end up cycling together? And by “cycling”, I don’t mean going for a bike ride, I mean visiting with Aunt Flo, having their time of the month, or menstruating, whichever terminology you prefer. This led me to wonder: since J. and I can no longer cycle together–I gave up cycling a while back now, poor balance and all–perhaps our bodies are finding other ways to commune. She drinks a few beers in the pub and my liver enzymes skyrocket, even though I’m sticking with pineapple juice and soda. It appears I am suffering the consequences of J.’s actions.

But there’s another reason Dr. Blood was asking about my boozing: I had told the nurse I was itchy. Intense, unrelenting itchiness can be a sign of a troubled liver, hence the “Itchiness” box on The Form. But I have itchiness à la polycythemia, i.e., my itchiness is short-lived and occurs only after a shower, as I explained to the doctor. “Oh,” Dr. Blood said, “that kind of itchiness.” And since everything else seems a-okay–if my liver were really in distress, I’d have no appetite, and there’s certainly no sign of that–Dr. Blood sent me for repeat blood work in a few weeks, and suggested a visit to Dr. Foie Gras if the numbers don’t improve.

As to my fear she might suggest lotion? Completely unfounded. She knows better than that.

Picture of woman drinking beer


6 thoughts on “The perils of drinking pineapple juice in the pub

  1. My suggestion is to just stop showering, that should improve the itchiness. Or perhaps have J stop and then it will work vicariously through you (now you know why they won’t let me work in a hospital).


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