Blogs > Jim Collins' Editor's Notebook

Jim Collins is editor emeritus of The News-Herald and also serves as executive in residence at Lakeland Community College. His popular weekly column appears each Sunday in Comment in The News-Herald.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Breathing easier after hospital stay with friend

Getting out of the hospital is a little bit like getting out of the Army – when you think back you recall the good times and overlook the bad. Yes, there are unpleasant times in the hospital – the ever-present needles in the arm. But the good part manifestly outweighs the bad.
How I got into the Lake West facility in Willoughby a few days ago involved a great deal of persuasion on the part of the lady of the house, my older daughter and her husband. I was feeling rotten, but insisted all I needed was a couple hours of sleep. I was overruled in dramatic fashion. “We’re taking you to see Steve Baum,” they said, in unison. “Don’t fight it.”
My doctor friend ordered X-rays. He said they substantiated what he had already learned by listening to my chest with his stethoscope. I had pneumonia. I told him I’m not going to the hospital. Period.
After we got to the hospital, I sent Louie, my son-in-law, to Wendy’s for a large chocolate Frosty. I was starved and didn’t know when I would be eating again.
Not to worry. I consumed several meals at the hospital that I had watched going up, brick-by-brick, around 1960. And if you ever hear anyone complain about hospital food, send them to that first-rate facility for a meal. You lie in bed and order all your meals from a comprehensive menu that is as appealing as any you will find in a fine restaurant.
I was there only two nights before they wiped out the pneumonia and sent me home. I was released about 10 o’clock in the morning, but gave serious thought to sticking around for lunch. The food was that good.
The first night I had roast turkey and the second night pot roast of beef. I picked enough side dishes from the lengthy list to dispel any hunger pangs I might have undergone. One day for lunch I had a cheeseburger that was the match of any you will find in any restaurant of your choice. I had a tough time choosing side dishes because they all sounded great. I topped it off with orange sherbet.
Both days for breakfast I ordered orange juice, scrambled eggs, bacon, wheat toast and coffee. The only thing they wouldn’t let me do was order french toast along with the eggs. Too many total carbs. Oh well, the eggs were great.
All the nurses and aides on the fourth floor were outstanding — pleasant and eager to help. But when the nurse who gave me the most attention first walked into the room, I was stunned. I could not believe my eyes. And more often that not I believe my eyes.
He was a clone of my younger daughter’s son, Brian. They looked like twins who had been separated at birth — same height, same build, same face, same haircut, same even, white teeth, same everything. I rubbed my eyes. Except Adam Mayse is 23 and Brian is 22, so they couldn’t possibly be twins.
“Where did you go to college?” I inquired. First year at Lakeland, he said. Then there was a long wait to get into nursing school, so he finished at the Kent State Ashtabula branch. The renowned nursing school at Lakeland is first-rate. It’s only drawback is the long wait for admission.
I continued my interrogation. “Where did you go to high school?” Mentor, he replied. “You look as if you could have been a football player,” I said. He admitted that he had been a linebacker for the Cardinals.
To make a long story short, he is one of three Mayse brothers – another linebacker plus a quarterback. My investigation later revealed that they were all super-talented players who had been the focus of complimentary stories in The News-Herald’s sports pages.
It was all coming back to me now — stories I had read by Bill Tilton and other sportswriters who marveled at their talents. So Adam Mayse was no ordinary football player, but he is no ordinary nurse, either. His talents in the field of health care are the equal of his abilities on the gridiron.
“There’s another football player in the room across the hall,” Adam said. “Bob Gain, from the Cleveland Browns.”
I raced across the hall. What a treat, seeing the great Bob Gain once again.
We have been friends for decades (he still lives in Timberlake) and I barely missed seeing his lovely wife, Kitty, who left before I got there. Bob and I talked and talked and talked.
“I still maintain there are four former Browns who belong in the Football Hall of Fame,” I told him. “Yourself, Clay Matthews, Jim Ray Smith and Gary Collins. In addition to being a great receiver, Gary also led the league in punting one year.”
Bob’s response was: “I told Gary he held two punting records with the Browns — one for the longest punt and one for the shortest punt.”
Ah, fame. It’s wonderful. And it’s wonderful to be famous like that quartet.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Male nurse should not have told you that Gains,another football player was across the hall...ever hear of HIPPA-hope he doesn't get terminated because of you

November 13, 2011 at 1:57 PM 

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