The Waiting is the Longest Part
They have been sitting in the doctor’s waiting room for what seems like hours.
Gary doesn’t even notice himself drumming on the arm rest.
She grabs his hand and gives him a look.
“We’ve been sitting here forever,” he whines.
“It hasn’t been that long,” she replies, reading her magazine.
“You didn’t make me wait this long to get you into bed when we first started dating.”
“Are you calling me a whore?” she asks, now looking at him.
“Noooo. Of course not.”
Gary turns to the elderly gentleman — who is 75 if he is a day — sitting next to him and gives him the “a little bit” sign with his thumb and forefinger while mouthing the words.
Gary starts whistling, but catches himself. He picks up the clipboard that is sitting in front of Shari.
“Last time I filled one of these out, I couldn’t find a spot to tell them about that pain in my ovaries,” he whispers. “You know the one?”
Shari takes the clipboard out of his hand and puts it back on the table.
“Dude, how old are these magazines?” Gary asks, scanning the available reading material.
“They aren’t THAT old,” she almost hisses.
“Wow. Check this out,” he says excitedly. “Alec Baldwin and Kim Basinger are showing us their Y2K shelter. Man, I hope those two crazy kids can make it work.”
Gary crosses his fingers and smiles at Shari. She doesn’t even look up.
Gary looks around the room. He gets a strange look on his face.
“That elevator music they are piping in here… I think it’s Motley Crue.”
“What?,” she asks.
“Motley Crue. The Crue!”
She listens for a few moments.
“Brahms? Did he play bass for The Crue?”
“I’m going to need you to stop talking,” she says forcefully as she goes back to her magazine.
“It’s ‘Dr. Feelgood.’ They are playing ‘Dr. Feelgood.”
Gary starts singing, and not even nearly along with the music.
“Rat-tailed Jimmy is a second hand hood. He deals out in Hollywood.”
“Stop.” she says.
“Got a ’65 Chevy, primered flames. Traded for some powdered goods,” he continues, holding an invisible mic.
“Jigsaw Jimmy, he’s runnin’ a gang. But, I hear he’s doin’ OK.”
Gary holds the invisible mic out to the elderly gentleman, who doesn’t miss a beat.
“Got a cozy little job, sells the Mexican mob packages of candycaine.”
Gary is floored.
“That was awesome, old dude.”
Shari grabs Gary’s mic hand and pulls it down. She glares at him.
“Did you see that?,” he asks incredulously.
“I’m sorry. Hey, where do you think this doctor went to school?”
“I don’t know,” she replies. “Why do you want to know?”
“I just don’t think we should take the word of some dude who went to someplace like… Arizona State.”
“Absolutely. No Sun Devils, I say! Their football team blows.”
“You want to pick a doctor based on the strength of the football team where they went to school?” she asks.
“You don’t like?”
“You are driving me crazy.”
A nurse arrives on the scene.
“Folks, the doctor will see you in a few moments, ” she says with a smile, as she picks up the clipboard from the table.
“Can spouses go in too?” Shari asks.
“Of course,” the nurse replies and starts to walk away.
Then she turns around and adds, “The Doctor went to John’s Hopkins. But, his son goes to Ohio State if that makes you feel any better.”
“Hmm,” Gary replies, relatively satisfied.
Suddenly the reality of the situation hits Shari. Her faces goes white. She turns to Gary and he is already looking at her. He gives her a wink and then a smile.
A simple wink.
A simple smile.
And she can’t help but smile back.
She knows what he’s been doing. While he does hate waiting, this little show has been for her benefit. He’s done everything short of striptease to keep her mind off of what was about to happen. He is a giant pain in the ass goofball. But, he is her giant pain in the ass goofball, and she loves the crap out of him.
He leans over and kisses her on the top of the head.
“I still think it’s The Crue.”
She giggles and a little snort escapes.
The nurse returns.
“The doctor will see you now.”
Gary and Shari are lead down a dark hallway to the doctor’s inner office. Gary allows Shari to enter first. Gary notices a finger print smudge on the gold door plate that says “Dr. David Chase.”
They each take a seat in the empty office.
Gary takes Shari’s hand. She manages a weak smile.
He leans in.
“I love you.”
“I love you too,” she replies, her voice choked with emotion.
A side door opens and the doctor enters. He is in his 50s. Grey hair. Tall. Gives the impression of confidence and competence. He is wearing reading glasses and opening a file that he carries.
“Hello, ” he says quickly.
He places the file on the desk and takes a seat.
He begins flipping through pages.
“So, I have the results right here,” he says without looking up.
He seems to be double and triple checking.
The water cooler gurgles in the corner of the office. Shari jumps a little. Gary squeezes her hand.
A clock ticks loudly on the wall behind them
The doctor finally lifts his head and looks at them over the top of his reading glasses.
“OK. This is the situation…”