Monday, August 09, 2021


We learn several things: a CT Scan is X光電腦斷層掃描 ('ecksi gwong din nou tuen chang sou miu'; "x-ray sparky brain segmentary sweep copy"), computed tomography is 計算機斷層成像 ('kai suen gei tuen chang sing jeung'; "calculating machine interrupted strata completed images"), and uncle's surname is Lam (林). I encountered uncle Lam in the waiting area for the Radiology Department (放射科部 'fong se fo pou'; "liberate ejection science section"). Never knew his name before. He's probably years older than I am, but rather than referring to him as an uncle in Chinese, or even "elder brother" (大佬 'daai lou'), I used the rather neutral 'heng daai' (兄弟 "brother, compadre"), which is a bit more a Hokkien gangster term, although also used in swordsman literature (武俠文 'mou haap man'; 江湖小說 'gong wu siu suet').

[No, he's not the same man as the opera uncle who has five wives. That's Chew Sook. He's one of the other uncles.]

I showed up over an hour ahead of my appointment. Done with and a free man half an hour before I was supposed to be there. Time for congee, fried dough stick, strong milk tea. Followed by a bowlful of tobacco.

When I got home, Surreptitious Cigarette Auntie (秘密香煙阿姨 'bei-mat heung-yin ah-yi') was enjoying a Marlboro on the street near my apartment building. My guess is that her relatives actually do know that she smokes, but ain't planning to tell her, because getting out of the house for a little walk around the block and a ciggy keeps her sane and keeps the blood flowing. And if she thinks she's pulling one over on them, more power to her.

It must be working. I've never seen her at the clinic.

Anyhow, the CT scan was set up because my healthcare team, concerned over my juvenile delinquency out puffing pipes behind the barn for a number of decades despite being told while a teenager that it would stunt my growth and cause bunions, wish to ascertain whether there are suspicious lesions in my breathing apparatus, and whether I shall require any drastic measures in addition to disapproval and stern lecturing.

We will know within the week.


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