it’s hard to imagine a Love Of Laughter story emerging from a scene that delivered the worst news of my life, but that’s just what this is. the fact is, it elicits a burst of laughter even now, even when i recall it in the hardest of moments… so for what it’s worth, it fits the bill.
the setting is mom’s last appointment with the team of doctors at the NIH. the ultimate outcome of that meeting was learning that their experimental drug combo was having no effect whatsoever on mom’s cancer, proven by the growth in her tumors during the treatment time. but before we all forget that this is a LOL post, i’ll get to the funny part. the really hilarious part.
the clinical trial fellow bearing the news was the sweet, soft-spoken dr. lee – a tall, beautiful korean woman whose sparkly gold toenail polish poked fun at her ultra-intellectual demeanor. i assumed that dr. lee was absolutely perfect at everything based on our experience with her up to that point. i was wrong.
in order to help us understand the results of mom’s scans, she resorted to the same technique as many a doc before her – a sketch. only it was immediately clear that dr. lee must’ve struggled in elementary art class. she proceeded to draw a large circle with two ovals hovering inside toward the top of the circle. i presumed these were to represent mom’s body and lungs. i’m not sure where her other vital organs disappeared to, but since the lungs were our biggest concern at the moment, i let it slide. and then, ah, yes, the addition of stick legs and arms and shrunken faceless head confirm my suspicions. we are now looking at something similar to this:
at this point i’m a little giggly at the drawing, but maybe i’m just anxious. and then she sends me over the edge. the good doctor adds a feature to indicate which is the left side and which is the right (because it’s not like a mirror…it’s like you’re standing behind the person…which might explain the absence of a face…nevermind).
the distinguishing feature is obvious: mom had only one remaining breast. so dr. lee carefully traces the single breast into the drawing–without her narration i wouldn’t have been able to identify the foreign object–affixing a half moon squarely between the spindly arm and pea head.
it was all i could do not to snort out loud, looking at mom’s little character with a boob on top of her shoulder, larger than her head, attached to a balloon of a body! i glanced at dad, who i swear cracked a grin, and had to work even harder to maintain my composure. this is a replica of the final masterpiece (minus the ominous inky blobs that dr. lee added throughout the picture after that):
doctor lee may not have been the best artist, but she did us an unintentional favor by bringing some levity to an otherwise humorless situation.
p.s. i can’t deny that this may have influenced my comical view of the sketch:
now that’s something to laugh aloud at!