I Dislike My New NurseCommentary • ISSUE 31•20 • Jun 4, 1997 By T. Herman Zweibel, Publisher Emeritus (photo circa 1911) Some time ago, my nurse, a custard-witted dullard with whom I had been long displeased, did me the injustice of aiding and abetting my despised arch-nemesis, Black Scarlet. As she rode off with him into the hills, it dawned on me that, for the first time in decades, I was without a nurse. And with my colostomy bag virtually overflowing, too! With her departure, who would now care for me? My manservant Standish stepped in, but he proved too delicate for the job. Though taciturn and stoic as always, he was not accustomed to having yellowish fecal matter sprayed across his livery. He was replaced by a capuchin monkey, and when I first laid eyes on it, I screamed like a lady. My son, V. Lucius, whose lame-brained idea it was to introduce the hairy abomination, said it had been specially trained to assist invalids. But the thing leaped about my bedchamber like a headless cricket, knocking over my armoire and my iron lung in a deafening crash. Then, eyes glowing like coals, he sprang on my bed, and as I shivered in fright, he flung off my bedclothes, lifted up my night-gown, and dumped an entire can of talc on my bedsore-laden bottom. It took four men to subdue the primate, and peace was not restored for several hours. It was then decided that V. Lucius' physical trainer, Gus, would take on the duty of nursing me. Gus is one of those newfangled fitness proponents who believes that the maladies of old age are merely fanciful constructs of the mind which can be overcome with a hardy regimen of calisthenics. Let me say that I swiftly came to dislike my new nurse. He rouses me from my slumber before the cock's crow, and promptly gives me a rub-down, slathering me head-to-toe with a stinking liniment that sets my skin aflame. Oblivious to my screams, Gus then dresses me in a sort of athletic union-suit, wheels me into the frigid morning air, and commences hurling a medicine-ball against my frail body. I can barely stay conscious as the ball strikes me repeatedly with the force of a cannon-shot; Gus yells at me to catch the ball, but how can I when most of my forearms have been eaten away by the leprosy? Can't this mad-man see that I am so old I'm almost transparent? How I dislike my new nurse!