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Monday, June 06, 2016


There is an hilarious and heartbreaking new e-book, written by a woman who saved her husband after his stroke, when the for profit medical community tried very hard to warehouse him and lock him away to quietly die. I know this because, I was the husband she saved. Filled with advice on how to speak out for yourself, receive your legal rights, make the hospitals and nursing homes and rehab clinics live up to their noble public statements, all the challenges and life and death struggles, and the use of humor to survive and triumph. It is worth far more than the $7.99 cover charge. Could be the funniest and most heart warming book you ever read, on any subject - not just strokes.

They say that you never know what you're capable of until you're tested. On April17, 2006, at 8:32 A.M., I was tested. And wow! I came this close to an epic fail. On that date and time I was being useless on the sofa...suddenly he was in the den with me; he threw a Kleenex box at me, in fact, plopped down on his side of the sofa and said, "My hands don't feel like mine." I was up and in his face in a nanosecond. (Okay, first I threw the box of tissue back at him because I was grouchy, but that lasted about, well, a nanosecond.) His face was looking normal. It wasn't doing that droopy thing that happened to Peter on "Family Guy" when that animated, completely unreal character had his STROKE. I asked Kimit if he wanted me to call 911.”

UNSOLICITED PRAISE FOR “YOU PICKED ORANGE”.: terrifying and so hilarious...You are a hellaciously good writer.” Would like to award you the "Best Thing Ever Said to a Doctor who had the Beside Manner of an Overripe Grapefruit”. ...would TOTALLY have helped you hide the bod(ies) AND given you an alibi” Wow!” “I opened your 41st chapter and now I'm hooked. I went back and started reading from the first chapter. You are a terrific writer/storyteller...I think you are amazing!” “How can you make me laugh and make me cry at the same time? You describe this horrible situation so hilariously and yet so, so heart-breakingly.” <>
Ms. Beth Vesel
Irene Goodman Literary Agency
27 West 24th Street
Suit 700B
N.Y.C., N.Y. 10010

Ms. Vesel:

What would you do if the most important person in your life were suddenly near death? Would you panic? Would you become a catatonic zombie? I tried both. Neither worked. In utter terror, I still needed to keep my wits, but boy howdy that was difficult, because of “money people” badgering and pestering me for funds I did not have, and my in-law support group who proved to be obnoxious, annoying caricatures of small town hypocrites, and my best friend of 25 years who decided that my begging her to help me not lose my mind was “asking too much.” But then our salvation arrived with lunch at a “rehab facility” which we referred to as Hellcare, in the form of a steaming, slimy dollop of canned bile on a plate.
You Picked Orange or How to Save Your Spouse From a Stroke and Not Have One Of Your Own” is an episodic non-fiction, non-linear humor/horror memoir of my 54-year-old husband's hemorrhagic stroke. “They say that you never know what you're capable of until you're tested. On April 17, 2006, at 8:32 A.M., I was tested”. “Ninety-eight percent of this story is true. That last 2 percent has been altered, to protect the idiotic, the ignorant, the moronic and the liars with lawyers,” and those who run a medical system that is too massive to be personal, thinks poor people are disposable, and some how, incidentally, almost accidentally saved his life.
The System entered as savior, when I called 9-1-1. I clearly and calmly said “My husband is having a STROKE and we need paramedics, this is my address, and yes, I am sure it's a STROKE, I know the signs and symptoms, and our address is this, and please send help Stat. Send help, yes, send help Stat." I was SO delusional. What I really did was shriek, “Husband, STROKE, now, help help help him, gonna puke, Oh God Oh God, Oh GOD HELP HELP, terrified, hurry, HE'S HAVING A STROKE, REALLY! HELP!!”. The 911 lady was very nice, saying she was sending “EMTs Right FUCKING now.” Okay, there was one word in there she didn't really say.
The police arrived first. One of them pelted inside. I screeched, “He's downstairs, in the bathroom! (all 6'4”, 298 pounds of him)” and the cop said to me, “I can't do anything. We gotta wait for the EMTs.” I think he said that. What I heard him say was “I am useless. Wanna play Yahtzee?” Alas, when they came in, those EMTs from heaven, carrying their boxes of “Dr. Fix-It's Health Potions,” the first of them said, “Whoa, narrow staircase. Man, I hope this guy is small.” Shit.
Written (in part) on the web site “Daily Kos”, “You Picked Orange” earned unsolicited praise: “So terrifying and so hilarious...You are a hellaciously good writer” - “Would like to award you the "Best Thing Ever Said to a Doctor who had the Bedside Manner of an Overripe Grapefruit” - “Would TOTALLY have helped you hide the bodies AND given you an alibi” And, “Wow!”
In this tale you will meet people like: Dorothy the Manicured Money Lady (assigned by the hospital to pry ducats out of us) who was convinced we had hidden insurance or veteran's benefits, or that we had Krugerrands buried in our back yard or lost Rembrandt's in our attic;
The Unit Director who was more offended by my barely conscious husband's bellowing obscenities than the fact that he was literally roaring with pain from an undiagnosed infection;
The endless patient advocates who offered to help us with financial forms and applications for assistance, and then disappeared from our lives forever;
The Family Services Lady who starved us for six months because she had doubled our bank balance instead of dividing it by two people, so we appeared far too rich to qualify for food stamps;
The endless stream of doctors and therapists who said my husband would never even sit up without assistance let alone walk again - BTW he walked, helped by a cane, out of Hellcare;
The political flunkies who could never resist telling us we were morally deficient for needing assistance and suspecting us of stealing our $125 a month in food stamps:
And all those bilious souls who tried to harm us by withholding our right to care and got in our way? I kicked their ass. No, really. Took time, took energy, made me depressed and angry, but I was determined they would be sufficiently worried I might really become homicidal, they stayed away from us. And, with their help and in spite of their bureaucracy, I got my husband back.
Bio: Samantha “Sam” Kimmel studied comedy under Danny Simon when she was 20, until his brother Neil (Doc) Simon told her she was already funny and to “Go. Write. Be funny.” She worked for Filmation Associates Animation Studio (until it was purchased by a large pharmaceutical company and then razed to the ground. No one knows why.) under “Clambake” director and infamously dirty old man, Arthur Nadel. While there she developed “The Brooke Shields Cartoon Show”. You've never heard of it because it was killed by Terri Shields who complained the series had no superhero mother character. Samantha was also a regular contributor to the Los Angeles Herald Examiner (just before it closed), the L.A. Times and the L.A. Daily News (both of which survive, so far), and occasionally the Lafayette Journal and Courier. Her columns were always humorous and timely, often well received by the public, sometimes vilified by others in that public. She does not dwell on them

And, of course, the explanation of “You Picked Orange”. .

Email a query letter and the first ten pages, along with a synopsis (3-5 paragraphs) and bio, in the body of an email to the agent of your choice. The email addresses for this purpose are listed below. WE DO NOT ACCEPT SNAIL MAIL QUERIES.

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