When we turned the page on our calendar we saw a note in the box for November 10: “Dr. Malani 11:15.” Or it might have said, “Dr. Malari,” handwriting being what it is.
Malani or Malari, whoever it was, we had no idea.
A Google search did not help, nor did a search of the Gainesville Yellow Pages, which Kim dug out of the bottom of a drawer. Of course, I might have missed the name, as the phone book’s march toward extinction takes the form of smaller and smaller print, with the projected end result a single dense black dot, a black hole from which no light escapes. But that’s another story . . ..
My next instinct, my usual default lazy-man strategy, was to wait. Doctors and dentists always call to remind us of appointments, don’t they? I’m not sure if they just do that for old people who suffer from CRS Syndrome*, but I figured we would find out soon enough. But when we got to November 8 with no call, my strategy changed.
Why not, I reasoned, think of everything that could be physically wrong with either one of us? Maybe that exercise would trigger a neuron or two to unlock Dr. Malani’s identity.
This exercise turned out to be a depressing mistake, as you can well imagine. Back pain? High blood pressure? Ingrown toenails? That thing growing on your back? That thing growing on my face? Fibromyalgia? Male pattern blindness? Insufficient intestinal flora? Prostate issues? Leg cramps? Insomnia? Recurrent hangovers? Itchy scalp? Impatience? Sloth? Itchy scalp? Lightheadedness? Heavyhandedness? Short windedness? Intolerance of fools? And what about my breath?
Back to Google with new spelling variations. Nada.
Then, on a whim, I Googled Dr. Malani in Ann Arbor, not Gainesville, even though I’ve always known we would be in Gainesville in November.
Bingo! Dr. Malani is a rheumatologist in Ann Arbor!
I called Dr. Malani’s office (from Florida) to confirm that I’d made the appointment, and then to cancel it. As it turned out, we had already cancelled the appointment back in August. We appear to have forgotten both making and canceling the appointment. I hung up as gracefully as I could, glad to know we had one fewer health issue to worry about.
* Can’t Remember Shit