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Stats & Data

August 04, 2009

I don’t want to jinx anything, but I’ve never ever had to go to the hospital before in my life – well, except for the one time I took a gigantic, skull-crushing bong rip and smashed my face into a key hook/mail holder – but that was a self inflicted wound, so it doesn’t count.

But consider these factors for a moment:

-I’ve never had a broken bone
-I’ve never had AIDS
-I’ve never had cystic fibrosis


-I was born to old parents.

My dad was 50 years old and my mom was like 46 when I was born. And although I believe there might be a slight chance that I may be an extremely highly functioning autistic person – the fact is, I wasn’t born with any major forms of mental retardation or birth defects. Do you have any idea how high the odds are of someone like me turning out normal under those conditions are? I’m not sure either, but it can’t be too common. I mean, I turned out better than the elephant man, and he was conceived under better circumstances.

The point is, I’m a medical marvel. The weak sperm of an old man grew up inside the crusty womb of a middle-aged woman and I was the result. Because of that, I think I may be unbreakable -- you know like Bruce Willis’s train-crash-surviving character in the M. Night Something or other movie, Unbreakable.

And I attest my unbreakableness to my dad, who himself has a Wolverine-like ability to heal from any wound.

I have more memories of my dad going to the hospital than anything else. I remember being awoken, on many nights, by the sound of ambulances coming to my house because my dad was having a heart attack. And I’m not kidding at all. My dad survived several heart attacks as well as a few strokes.

In addition, he has survived the following ailments:

-colostomy bags
-plastic knees
-a metal spike through his head

But my dad’s greatest medical challenge happened the summer between my sophomore and junior year of college. It was around 1998 and my dad must have been around 72 years old at the time. One Friday night, my dad awoke to a paralyzing headache and a sense of dizziness he hadn’t felt since Korea. My mom was scared and, once again, an ambulance swung by the house.

After several hours and many tests, the doctors discovered that my dad was suffering from a brain aneurism.

In case you’re not aware, a brain aneurysm is basically like a big blister that can grow on the arteries in your brain. Usually, you can tell that you have a brain aneurysms because it pops and you die.

Fortunately my dad was a tough old bird, and his aneurism hadn’t ruptured yet, so there was time to do something. Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston, Maine wasn’t capable of handling the situation so they flew him by helicopter to Mass General in Boston.

The Masshole doctors decided to go with Endovascular Therapy – a technique where they inserted platinum coils into a vein in my dad’s leg. From there, the doctors fed the platinum coils all the way up to the aneurism in my dad’s head, where they successfully blocked the blood flow into the aneurysm and prevented it from rupturing:

Everything went great except that my dad suffered a stroke during the procedure. And this was the worse stroke he ever had. It completely paralyzed the right side of his body. He couldn’t move anything at all. Even the right side of his face didn’t have enough strength to hold its own eyebrow up.

But the next morning when we went to pick my dad up, he was miraculously back to normal. He could even move his right side again. It was like nothing ever happened.

A similar thing happened to me the other day. My hemorrhoid started acting up so I stopped eating corn. A few days later the itching went away. That’s what you call unbreakable.