You Don’t Need to Drop a Rock on Me

I am a recovering TV-aholic.

My Thanksgiving story will demonstrate just how far gone I was.

When I was 10, I woke up in the hospital one day with about 8 people surrounding my bed.

It was news to me that I was in the hospital, as I had been in a coma for three days.  I didn’t know half the people looking down on me, and I was a little freaked out to have a bunch of tubes and wires attached to various parts of my body.

After establishing that I was in a hospital in New York (we lived in New Jersey at the time), and that I was alive, my next question was what day of the week it was.


“Sunday??!!!!!!  Is Nancy Drew on yet?”

Yep.  That was my number one concern.  Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys were my LIFE.  They came on every Sunday, and there were no VCR’s or DVR’s or friggin’ Hulu.  You watched it when it came on or you waited until the summer for the reruns.  Period.

So, one of the nurses went to get a T.V., and rolled it into the I.C.U., while all of the adults chuckled thankfully that at least the television-addicted portion of my brain had apparently not been effected by my coma.

I had Reyes’ Syndrome, and I was darn lucky to be alive.  Even these days (that was 33 years ago), this illness is deadly – quickly attacking the liver and the brain with a vengeance.  It is linked to aspirin use, but no one is quite sure what causes it.  Hence the “Syndrome” part of its moniker.

I got out of the hospital on Thanksgiving, a few days earlier than the doctor really felt advisable.  But I wanted to be with my family during the holiday.

And I was not satisfied with the television options in my hospital room.

You see, every Thanksgiving I watched one particular show – the Laurel and Hardy version of Babes in Toyland, AKA March of the Wooden Soldiers.  And I was not confident enough in the three channels at the hospital to deliver on this tradition.

Barely able to walk, I fooled everyone into thinking I was well enough to go home.  Comfortably ensconced in my bedroom with my grandmother’s old black and white television set in front of me, I tried my best not to throw up while I laughed at Stan and Ollie’s mishaps in Toyland.

I fully recovered from my Reye’s Syndrome.  And, believe it or not, I’m pretty much over my TV-aholism.

But I still like to watch Stan and Ollie on Thanksgiving (thankfully now available on DVD). While I watch, I always send out some brainwaves of gratitude to the doctors and nurses who saved my life.  And to the Stan’s and Ollie’s of the world who help me to enjoy living it.

[Silas Barnaby, the Toyland villain, disappears down a well. Stannie and Ollie corner him.]

Stannie Dum (Stan Laurel) : You better come up dead or alive!

Ollie Dee (Oliver Hardy) : How can he come up dead when he’s alive?

Stannie Dum (Stan Laurel) : Let’s drop a rock on him. That’ll make him dead when he’s alive.

Ollie Dee (Oliver Hardy) : Now you’re talkin’.


Read more:



Posted on November 24, 2011, in Doctors, Family, Humor and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 18 Comments.

  1. “Babes in Toyland” used to be shown every Thanksgiving on Channel 11, WPIX. We were probably watching at the same time.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. I’m sure glad you survived to watch many more TV shows and will continue to watch many more. Even though most TV really sucks. But you get mt drift, right? Happy Thankdsgiving.

  3. I also send thanks to the doctors and nurses who saved your life. Without you everyday life would not be so bright… you and the antics in your house always make me laugh

  4. I am so thankful it was not your time to go home yet.

  5. Sunday? The Ed Sullivan Show!

  6. I love that movie! We’ve got to get it.

  7. Fantastic post! Great writing and an amazing story. Tall person is a big fan of Laurel and Hardy 🙂

  8. Loved Nancy Drew. And I assume you are talking The Hardy Boys incarnation with Parker Stevenson and Sean Cassidy? Parker and I were destined to be together. Not sure what happened.

    Or did I just date myself in a really embarassing way?

    • I was absolutely talking about the Stevenson/Cassidy version. And I am so happy to meet a fellow Parker Stevenson fan! I thought I was the only one in the middle of a sea of Shaun Cassidy worshippers!

  9. Wow, that’s dedication right there! I was glued to the tube when I was younger too. I’m glad to be over my addiction. High-five for kicking the habbit too.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: