Diary of a 100-Year-Old Man

A Haiku for My Doctors
All things elderly.
Sept. 11 2008 11:01 AM

Diary of a 100-Year-Old Man

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I have made my visit to my heart doctor. Last time he told me to come back in two months. Today, he says cheerfully: "You're doing well. Come back in six months."

Six months! That's like getting a gold bond on my life. Not payable for six months, or later. I am exhilarated. I must rely on a whole set of physicians. Today's lively medical send-off stimulates me to write a haiku with a modest pattern at the end:

I owe them all so very much,
My life and fun and sense of ease
And welcome freedom from disease
My…

Cardiologist
Dermatologist
Ophthalmologist

And my … me-di-cin-nal generalist.

Exhausted by so much activity, I take my indispensable nap.

In the afternoon, I have a double pleasure. I pontificate about the election (to a reporter from Paris) and, besides, I do so in French. Pretty soon we lapse into English. I tell him that I think Obama will win and will do so by a big vote. I am perturbed by the hockey mom. She sounds so much like so many working young women that I fear defections.

It has been a long day. At 100, early to bed!

Leon Despres represented Chicago's Hyde Park neighborhood as an alderman for two decades. He is the author of Challenging the Daley Machine: A Chicago Alderman's Memoir.