Sunday, December 3, 2017

Normalizing Feeding Tubes

A lot of the heavy duty stuff that comes with being an old cripple kind of scares me some, but not a lot. Like for instance, being on a ventilator. I can’t deny that I think being on a ventilator would be a real drag, mostly for the pain in the ass of it all. Being hooked up to this blinking, beeping thing all day? Having somebody constantly follow you around in case you need them to stick a tube down your throat via your trach to suction out mucous? It seems like that would add a lot to the daily routine.

A lot of people are so scared about being on a ventilator that they say they’d rather be dead. Come on, really? Dead? Once you make a decision like that there’s no taking it back. You can’t try it for 30 days and return it free if you’re not completely satisfied, paying only shipping and handling. Maybe people wouldn’t be so freaked out about being on a ventilator if somebody did something to normalize the experience. The way that we normalize something in the U.S. is to make a TV show about it. There ought to be a show about a crime-solving dude who’s on a ventilator. He’s crippled as all hell but he’s a crime solving genius so whenever the police have a stumper of a crime that really busts their balls they turn to him and he solves it every time. He has a nurse who follows him around and suctions him every now and then and she’s also his wise-cracking sidekick. A show like that would convince a lot of people that being on a ventilator is not just okay, it can even be cool.

I also can’t deny that the prospect of having to eat through a feeding tube scares me some. Maybe I’d feel better if there was something on TV to normalize that. I’m thinking maybe one of those gluttony competitions, like where a guy eats 50 hot dogs in 10 minutes. Except this one would be strictly for people with feeding tubes. Hook them up to their cans of food and whoever consumes the most cans the fastest wins two hundred grand. It can be sponsored by whatever companies manufacture the gruel people who use feeding tubes eat. It may not be the most fast-paced competition anybody ever saw, but I know some people will watch it. It can’t be any more boring than watching golf.

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