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Pectoriloquy |

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Joseph Duemer
Author and Funding Information

South Colton, NY


Copyright 2016, American College of Chest Physicians. All Rights Reserved.


Chest. 2016;150(6):1405. doi:10.1016/j.chest.2016.07.045
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    I spent a lot of time last week
    parsing definitions & making
    choices. By putting my initials
    here, instead of there, I instruct
    the future to do this or that to me
    when I can’t speak for myself.

    The document must be signed,
    witnessed, notarized, which
    takes some doing when you are
    not well. So I arranged a meeting
    with the Cancer Center’s notary
    & brought my document. We sat

    in a corner of the lobby, going
    over the initialings & affixing
    signatures. For witnesses, we
    asked random workers from
    Admitting. We laughed & joked,
    strangers going through this

    necessary ritual. They are used
    to it, of course, but I suspect
    a light touch of unease passed
    through them. We all knew why
    I was signing this right now.
    (I was the one in the wheelchair.)

    They had been picked out
    by chance that day to be confronted
    with this reminder, a dark wing
    passing through the sunlight,
    trailing a faint shadow. That’s
    why we joked so much, no doubt.


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