The Squeakless Whatnot
This thing won’t stop beep-beep beeping. The “attendants” are apparently unconcerned. They can hear it. The door is open. Their desk--I can see it--is feet from this room. But, as I am not the only one here, these “attendants” may have more “important” things to do. After all, there are many other invalids up and down the corridor; many who behave as if theirs is the only room in the joint. I am not such an individual. I am not The World, I am of the world; and I am proud to say so.
True, I could, once again, press the button to summon an attendant. When I summoned one before, with the appropriate button, they were, it must be said, admirably prompt in responding, and in their promptness, admirable in silencing the beep-beep beeping. However, they left only minutes ago--two minutes, forty-three seconds ago, to be precise (I’ve kept count; I’ve little else to do; the view offers nothing but a dirty brick wall--although perhaps it is the pane that is dirty, the wall itself, possibly clean)--and the thing is beep-beep beeping all over again and, to reiterate, I am not the pestering sort.
That is to say, I do not think of myself as the pestering sort. But, yes, I am aware that, historically speaking, “the squeaky wheel gets the grease.” But, it must be said, that was true in days gone by. These days, the squeaky whatnot gets tossed to the heap. Squeak, enough to be an irritant, and you’re easily replaced with a brand new, squeakless whatnot. And, to credit the source, that saying, about “the squeaky wheel,” I first read it in The Autobiography of Malcolm X. He was doubtlessly correct with regard to the greasing of squeaky wheels, ole Malcolm was. But (SPOILER ALERT) squeak too much and somebody shoots you (ole Malcolm found that out the hard way). Certainly, certainly, that is not the main thought to take away from a reading of The Autobiography of Malcolm X. But it is the one that has stuck with me through the years; that, and the advice to leave the lights on as a deterrent to burglary.
Here, thankfully, the only thing they’ll shoot you with is medication. Nothing wrong with that, I suppose. Unless you want to poop. Dope, I am told, or, perhaps I have read, can lead to constipation. And, of course, all of the other things Huey Lewis sang about. Speaking of which, I wonder if he ever got that “new drug.” And I wonder if it was Ecstasy. Just out of curiosity.