Saturday, January 10, 2009
"The principle part of faith is patience."
When one endures a bout of illness such as a cold or influenza, and happens to eat particular foods during that interim, and after recovery recalls, at the very scent of the food, the feverish, bedridden days- then the experts would declare that the Garcia Effect is taking place.
It is named after the psychologist John Garcia, a fellow who studied rats, taste aversion and illness, and documented the results of the combination.
Most people, I would wager, have had some beloved meal, a former favourite, turn horribly sour on the tongue following a sickness.
There again, food might be just one element that one develops a distaste for.
Two days ago Mater returned to the hospital for test results. She sat in the waiting room. I have twice accompanied her; the latest was her fourth appointment. Each time, while Mater perched on the edge of the chair, the same programme was airing on the television: a chat show hosted by a celebrity with a habit of being rather upbeat and buoyant and whose figure and lips rarely cease to move while on the screen.
At the best of times, the character could be categorised as cheerful, optimistic and immensely entertaining to a waiting room full of worried ladies.
In Mater's case, however, it being quite the worst sort of repetition, she yesterday declared she never again wishes to see this person on television, despite previously having had little negative opinion on the television programme or its sprightly host.
One would expect no less from a soul experiencing such a troubling series of visits: it was hoped that the news regarding Mater's tests would be wholeheartedly positive, but the doctor's delivery was less than she had desired.
I myself suspect that the good news is merely postponed until next week when a more complete and definitive outcome can be measured.
Good news does not always arrive at the precise moment we need it. Sometimes the timing is slightly off-kilter- like tuning repeatedly into the same television show against one's will due to the random scheduling of an appointment.
I do believe that Mater's confession and my conclusion ought to be added to the Record of Aversions.
Posted by Phyllis Hunt McGowan at 6:46 PM