The Orange Wire Problem and Other Tales from the Doctor's Officeby David Watts
Pub. Date: 04/28/2009
Publisher: University of Iowa Press
Western literature has had a long tradition of physician-writers. From Mikhail Bulgakov to William Carlos Williams to Richard Selzer to Ethan Canin, exposure to human beings at their most vulnerable has inspired fine writing. In his own inimitable and unpretentious style, David Watts is also a master storyteller. Whether recounting the decline and death of a dear
Western literature has had a long tradition of physician-writers. From Mikhail Bulgakov to William Carlos Williams to Richard Selzer to Ethan Canin, exposure to human beings at their most vulnerable has inspired fine writing. In his own inimitable and unpretentious style, David Watts is also a master storyteller. Whether recounting the decline and death of a dear friend or poking holes in the faulty logic of an insurance company underling, The Orange Wire Problem lays bare the nobility and weakness, generosity and churlishness of human nature.
With disarming candor and the audacity to admit that practicing medicine can be a crazy thing, Watts fills each page with riveting details, moving accounts, or belly-laughs. As the stories in this work unfold, we are witness to the moral dilemmas and personal rewards of ministering to the sick. Whether the subject is the potential benefits of therapeutic deception or telling a child about death, Watts’s ear for the right word, the right tone, and the right detail never fails him.
From The Orange Wire Problem and Other Tales from the Doctor’s Office:
We were lingering in the outer office. He mentioned again, no biopsy. I knew that. And I knew there would be no chemotherapy.
Maybe it's like that Orange Wire Problem, I said.
Yes exactly, he said, and four years from now when we're all sitting around the campfire we'll remember the Orange Wire Problem. . .
And I thought to myself, my brother did that. Spoke of the time ahead as he was dying of lung cancer. Six months from now he had said, we'll be glad we did all those drug therapiesas if to speak of the future laid claim to the future.
- University of Iowa Press
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Table of Contents
xiii Preface: What You Might Expect to Find Here
Facts and Lies
The Orange Wire Problem
Let Eagles Come
The Chart in the Window
Thank You Mr. Nicholson
Talking about Christmas
Silence Knows the Right Questions
One Cancer Cell
Telling the Truth in the Realm of Truth
Ghosts in the Machine
Is Something Wrong with Your Prostate?
The Soft Animal of the Body
Aspirin and Beauty
Notes from the Center of a Perpetual Breakdown
Ready for Anything
A Critical Distance
The Way We Know What We Know
The Case of the Missing Molecule
The Pill on the Shelf
Mother Teresa and the Problem of Care
The Doctor’s Pill
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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David Watts charmingly reveals the challenges of both doctor and patient in thought provoking essays (bio-vignettes) that you can't put down or easily forget. He brings unabashed humor and poignancy front and center from behind the door in the doctor's office as he tells the tales of decades of his ministering to the sick. Throughout The Orange Wire Problem and Other Tales from the Doctor's Office, Watts speaks reverently and poetically about the human condition when confronted with disease or just the maladies of being human. He is refreshingly honest and serious about the mysteries of science and healing when he says, "I see the mysterious in the way some people heal faster than others. I see it rise in us and bend us certain ways as we are confronted with illness or mortality, as if it waits for this, as if mystery always intends to rise up when we least expect it." Looking at another side of him, Watts' sense of humor sparkles in an incident when a somewhat irrational female patient manipulatively turns the tables and is concerned about Dr. Watts' prostate, after he's reluctant to order the irrelevant enzyme tests she demands. She says, "You know, sometimes when men...well you know, the men they have prostate problems like women have menopause and sometimes men have, well you know, prostate mental problems..." He's thinking, "...she was diagnosing my prostate by way of my brain, the culprit responsible for the glitch in the orderly procession toward her beloved enzyme tests." In his inimitable way, he sums up, "Learn a little somethin' every day. Prostate mental problems, yes indeedy." And then there are the beloved insurance companies: Ya gotta love him for the 17cent check from MediCal, labeled "full payment for services rendered," he has framed on his wall, as well as his unwillingness to fight big government for payment. You can almost see Watts shrug his shoulders as he moves beyond the bureaucracy to give his patients what they need. We should all be so fortunate as to have Dr. Watts as our personal physician, after all he'll prescribe a pill that he suggests you don't swallow, just keep it in your pocket or in a locket around your neck - most likely your symptoms will disappear. And we're right back to mysteries. Thank you, David Watts, for a bit of your soul.
Go to curb res 3
But im so hor.ny....please