I am walking into the big offices of my “Moh’s Prcedure” skin surgeon and a nurse cries out, cheerfully, “Mister Adorable! C’mon in.” Do I like that? Well, yes. Yes, I do.
The background is that a couple of weeks ago I had Moh’s surgery for a minor (basal cell) skin cancer on my arm. It’s an interesting procedure in which a very skilled surgeon opens up a spot where they have identified a patch of cancer that is too large to zap with a laser or “freeze” or whatnot. So they cut into your precious flesh and cut out the bad stuff. Then they take the goo out to the kitchen and pop it into the micro-wave or something to see how they’re doing. Sometimes they conclude they have to go back in and root around some more. If not, they sew you up again and off you go.
Actually, it is a hair more sophisticated than that and only a relatively few real experts do the operation. None is better than the truly adorable Desiree Ratner in New York. We have known each other for over fifteen years (she is the one who put me on to Harry Lodge as a possible doctor and co-author of Younger Next Year). She is tiny, has flaming red hair (a little less flaming than when we met) and is a star at this stuff. That is, the surgery (done with a local anesthetic) doesn’t hurt and in time the scar is invisible. She once took off half of my nose (seriously), scratching around for cancer, and you cannot see a single sign of her work.
Back to last week: She dug an 8 inch trough along my right arm and then sewed me up. The nurse asked how I felt, and I said, “adorable”. That tickled her and I am “Mr. Adorable” from now on. Excellent.
There is a two week healing period when you can’t exercise. In my case, that coincides with a six week, no-exercise period after having a knee replaced (not an amusing experience; I’ll tell you another time). I am done with both of them tomorrow. Hooray. Gotta get back in shape fast because Hilly and I are going on a lovely Butterfield and Robinson “bike and boat” trip on June 2nd. We sail up the Rhone, from Avignon to Lyon, through some of the prettiest (and best biking country) in the world. And the food is amazing. SUCH a treat. Gotta be in shape for it. Wish us luck.