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Sui-homicidal Thoughts

December 29, 2020. My dad and I are at Sloan Kettering Urgent Care due to dad’s worsening shortness of breath. It is our eighth time at Sloan this month. A nurse has been asking dad a litany of standard check in questions and gets to the last one. Nurse: “I’m now going to ask you a question I have to ask everyone.” Dad: “Ok.” Nurse: “Are you experiencing any suicidal thoughts?” Dad laughs out loud at the absurdity of this purely American question. Because no one in Soviet Russia would ask this, in fact they’d be pleased with fewer people to care for. The nurse laughs nervously with him. He stops laughing and looks seriously at the nurse and says: “No. But I do want to kill someone.” Nurse: “Who would you like to kill?” Me to the nurse: “Oh no, no, no, no, no. He is just kidding.” And more quietly so my dad can’t hear: “He is short of breath so ... you know ... less oxygen to the brain and all.”

Me to my dad in Russian: “You can’t say stuff like that!”

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1 Comment

adam newman
adam newman
Dec 30, 2020

LOL-- that fits him just perfectly

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