As an EMT and a medic in the Guard, I possess just enough medical knowledge to know the worst case scenario of pretty much any injury or illness. A belly-flop onto an upside down stool equals internal bleeding or perforated intestines. A malicious Campbell's soup can means tetanus; an unexplained fever for two weeks could be meningitis; a tick might as well be Typhoid Mary. I don't like the term paranoid. I prefer hyper-vigilant. Anyway, suffice it to say that I'm always on the look-out for potential emergencies.
Last week I was sitting out on my front stoop looking all gangster and nefarious (I like to imagine,) when I heard a series of groans and shouts coming from my neighbor's open window. Now I remembered my husband mentioning something about the man who lives across the street from us being unwell. But for the life of me I couldn't remember what exactly the ailment was. He didn't sound sick or in pain, and I was pretty sure that Captain Gingerbeard mentioned something about the man being a little off. So I went back inside. (I'm not a hero, damn it.)
This continued over the next three days. By the third day, the man began loudly cursing repeatedly. I swear I was thiclose to calling 911. But just as I was about to make the call, the man walked out of his front door and over to his car. He appeared perfectly fine...other than the fact that he seemed to be suffering from Tourette's. I don't know if that's his actual diagnosis, but that's what it looked like. This brush with embarrassment reminded me of a similar event from my childhood.
My brother, my cousins, and I were riding our bikes around our neighborhood (also looking gangster and nefarious.) As we passed one of our neighbor's homes, we noticed his front door was open and that the man was lying lifeless in front of his glass storm door. We high-tailed it straight back to my mom, and proclaimed our neighbor dead. My mom piled us in our mini-van, and drove the few houses over. She ran up to the man's door, and jerked it wide open. And then the dead man sat up. Or rather the man who was not dead but merely sunning himself like a cat sat up. My mother was super embarrassed, and this story has been told many times throughout the years.
So you see, people, it seems that my "storm on the horizon" mentality has been with me since birth. Well, when it relates to medical problems, that is. Oddly enough, I have a pathologically optimistic view on pretty much everything else in life. But, if it's related to the inner workings of the human body, I'm pretty much always under the assumption that the poop is going to hit the fan...sometimes literally.