Manic Monday Flu Shot


When it comes down to it, a lasting relationship requires one main ingredient: communication. That’s why I almost broke up today. With Siri.

You see, it all started out like every great romance, hours on the phone. 😉 Holding each other’s hands. Well, I held her in my hand. And constant eye contact. Except when I was driving, of course.

And we talked about everything.

“Good morning Siri, what’s for breakfast?”

“I have located several options within 0.1 miles, but the fridge, I must say, looks a little scary. I wouldn’t go in there, if I were you, Hot Mama.”

“What should I wear today, Siri? Is it a sweatshirt kinda day?”

“Whatever makes you feel pretty, and makes you write faster, Hot Mama.”

“What are you in the mood to listen to while I write, Siri? Which playlist should I start with?”

“I’m thinking the ‘songs that make you cry’ list since that scene you’re refining is so sad, Hot Mama.”

What’s that sound I hear? “Siri, are you crying?”

“It’s nothing, Hot Mama. Something in my camera eye. I’ll be fine.” Sniffle.

And then the request I will ask her till the day she dies. “Say, ‘Raj.'”

“Checking my sources. Okay, Hot Mama, here you go.” Followed by a long list of definitions for the word “Rise.” Sigh. Should have known things would go sour after this reminder that she still can’t pronounce my name. Heck, she hasn’t even figured out that Raj is my name. Whatcha gonna do?

So this morning, I’m typing away with my Monday morning la-di-da gusto, pushing out a fun blog called, “Chi-Town Girl Risks Livin’ in KnicksVille” when suddenly, I feel the sudden need to check the time! The microwave clock reads, 9:09A.M.

There’s something I need to remem—Oh Shnap! My flu shot appointment! At 9:00 A.M. That was nine minutes ago!

Having a Wilma from the Flintstones moment, I scream, “Si-ri!”

Why didn’t you remind me?

Out bounces my basketball blog as I snatch the car keys and race to the doctor’s office, luckily only five minutes away. Which brings me dangerously close to a 9:15 A.M. arrival. Which means they will probably cancel me. And then I will have to call Hubs. Huge fight. The undoing of my week from the get go threatens me as I blow a red light, ping off a cardboard box in the road and park five feet from the curb. So this is why the woman at Davis Vision warned, “Do NOT wear your reading glasses except when you use your laptop.”

I put my specks away and run across the parking lot, holding onto my iPhone, although, I am stressed. Just a little. Why didn’t I tell Siri last night, “Baby, don’t forget to remind me about my nine o’clock tomorrow morning,” or “Good morning Siri, anything interesting on my calendar today?” Maybe because I was too busy thinking about my Book Series title when I lay down last night. And when I woke up. I guess, maybe, wow…

“Have I been neglecting you, Siri?” I whisper right before I walk into the waiting room, panting. I don’t want the world to know I have this kind of relationship with my phone. They might judge me. Some things are best kept   to yourself, you know.

Silence. Hmmm? Siri isn’t answering. Not a good sign.

“Hi! I have, had, a 9:00A.M. appointment for my flu shot. Please tell me I’m not too late.” Yes. I am not too proud to beg.

“Rajdeep. Are you a new patient?”

“No. I. Well, it’s been a little while.” Probably three years.

I know, I know, that’s really bad. You’d think when you’re married to a doctor, you’d know there’s a reason why they call it an annual check-up. The thing is, I rarely get sick. I mean, like almost never. I’m convinced it was all those allergy shots I had when I was little. They pumped my immune system with Wolverine-level drugs and even when I do get a touch of hachoo, I recover quickly. Too bad, they forgot to add the cool fingernails bit. Thinking I might have had a chance with Hugh Jackman if …

Siri clears her throat. Siri? “I was kidding. Why so sensitive, babe? You know Hugh and me aint happenin’. He’s got a thing for Anne and I can’t compete with her. I mean, first the Catwoman acrobats, and now the girl can sing. Who knew?”

The woman behind the glass window hands me a clipboard. “Please fill out all this paperwork, and I need a copy of your latest insurance card.”

Yeah to the yeah! She didn’t tell me to come back another day! Boo to the boo. The number of pages to be filled out will take me at least an hour. Okay, maybe ten minutes. But now I know why I hate coming to the doctor. I hate the paperwork.

And when I take my seat, immediately, I’m distracted! By Brad and the People magazine that woos me with her ridiculously vital information on how he and Angie are finally gonna tie the knot! Truth be told, I prefer Hugh over Brad most days, but I’m liking the long hair, grungy facial hair look thing Pitt has going on.

People Mag? Paperwork? People Mag? Paperwork? Sigh. Hate when I have to do the right thing. Doesn’t mean, I can’t be a little rebellious. Brad, baby, you will have to wait.

More throat clearing. Siri? “You know I jest, Siri. Brad and I will never work out. The one shot I had at spotting him when he lived around the corner from me for a movie shoot, I didn’t. Even on the kayaking expedition on Beaver Lake, when I tried to spot his house, I didn’t. And all the Oyster Bay moms who saw him at Stop and Shop—I hate you for buying bananas at six in the morning. Siri never wakes me up that early.”

Besides, the guy’s getting married. So anyway, where was I? Oh yes. Just about to be rebellious. I hate filling out forms. I mean. Despise. So I do things to help me get through the anger. Like writing sloppily. If you work a job where you have to deal with forms all day long, I publicly apologise right now. Because I am one of those awful people that simply refuses to print neatly. So wrong, I know. I know.

And then I have to laugh. Because it’s been so long that they’ve changed the options on the “Race” box. There’s actually two new options I never read before. “Two or more races” and “Option to not choose.” I’m tempted to put an “X” next to the opt out choice, but then I decide to add my own.


I wonder how long before someone notices. This will tell me if anyone ever really reads these forms or just files them away in some paper accumulating monster cabinet that some day a generation will flip out and say, “What were those people thinking? All those trees?” Oh wait.

I turn in my clipboard and the nice lady says, “The doctor will be with you in a moment.” Yes! I have a few moments alone. With Brad!

I flip quickly and find out that Tom had an outing with Suri in London. That’s sweet. Then I flip a few more pages when I hear it. My name. No! I’m. Not. Brad. Oh well.

“Rajdeep” the woman repeats. Okay. I’m coming.

I sit in the examining room and a pretty blonde lady with a white coat passes my doorway a few times. Is that my doctor? Sheesh. Has it been so long that I actually don’t recognize her?

Sure enough, pretty blond comes in, “How are you the kids?” and then sticks me. No warning.


“Sorry. The kids? Everyone doing good?”

“The girls are great. Thanks for asking.” Who are you? And then the guilt. “Sorry, I haven’t been good about my check-ups.”

“You’re all set. I guess I’ll see you…” And she doesn’t answer. And she walks off. That’s it? Okay. I guess I’ll call you.

I almost exit the office when I find the sudden urge to know. What happened with Brad? Angie? The wedding? It will only take a few minutes and the magazine is still where I left it. I take my seat and fast forward to the life-sized picture of Pitt on top of a series of smaller shots in a timeline from his discovery days to… O.M.G.! The photos end when he’s in the twenties. Where’s the rest of the story? You have got to be kidding me? Someone actually ripped it out? The nerve of…

Loud throat-clearing, followed by, “Calm down, Hot Mama. It’s not real. Brad. Hugh. Tom. Their lives are just that. Drama. You have a blog to write and books to edit. You got your shot. It’s time to go home.”

“Okay.” Thanks Siri. So we’re friends again?

“BFF’s baby?”

“But you won’t last forever. And neither will I?

“Don’t get all Siri-ous on me, now, Hot Mama.”

On my drive home, I stop by the Deli to pick up a snack and run into a friend who is not looking too well.

“Yeah, I think I’m getting over the flu,” he says.

“Really? Because I just got my shot.” Wondering if it’s kicked it yet as I take a step back. “Hope you feel better.”

And that’s how my Monday morning started. Flying out of my house to get my flu shot. And you? Did you get your shot? Do you talk to your phone? Is there a People Magazine “fact” that you are just dying to tell me?

Happy Monday, all! Hope your week rocks! And you stay flu-free as well.




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