• author
    • Tom McMasters-Stone

    • November 3, 2013 in Columnists

    Gun control, or lack thereof



    I had trouble deciding between the title I chose and “The Son Also Rises.”  Sigh.

    I awoke about 5:00 this morning, and I was unable to lie on my stomach – if you know what I mean.

    My first thought was “Hey! It’s after noon somewhere!” as my wife was lying there, totally oblivious to the “looming” disruption to her sleep.

    So, being the practical and considerate guy that I am, I banished the thought right away.

    Well, at least MOST of me did.

    After another hour of lying on one side or the other, I finally swung my legs out of bed.

    I got dressed and puttered around for a while.  Ninety minutes.  Shit – 2.5 more hours and I have to call the doctor.

    I suddenly remembered that I had taken Trazodone the night before to help me sleep – for the first time in a long time.


    About a month ago, I was talking to a friend who had sleeping issues.  He told me that his doctor had taken him off Trazodone, something that is an old-school antidepression med, one that is, in lower dosages, prescribed for addicts and alcoholics as a sleep aid. He said the reason the doc took him off is that there is a 20 percent chance of a permanent erection, and that it requires removal in many cases.

    I didn’t believe him completely, of course. NOTHING, except experimental drugs are allowed on the market with side-effects like that!

    Two hours.  Now I am sitting on the patio.  This is NOT good.

    Should I call the advice nurse?  Hop in the van and drive to the hospital?  Not yet.

    Two hours, 30 minutes.  The last half hour has been in full “My life is over!” mode.

    The ice didn’t work.  I would like to tell you that it was two trays’ worth, but it was really only six or seven cubes.

    The only good news right about then was that my “I need a drink!” mode only lasted 2-3 seconds.

    My memory flashed back to the time I was in a meeting with a bunch of guys and I was the only guy there who had not given it a name.  It had never dawned on me to do so.  Now, faced with perhaps parting company, I regretted that omission immensely.  I mean, what would I put on the headstone, so to speak?

    Three hours.  Hey!  Was the tide going out, or was it my imagination?  Hmmm.

    Three hours and 30 minutes.  Hah!  Half-mast!

    Three hours and 53 minutes.  I walk to the bread rack, and put the phone back in the charger.

    Four hours and 15 minutes.  Most of my Trazodone is uncharacteristically and non-eco-friendily flushed down the toilet, I am in full “Joie de Vivre!” mode, and I am now a dedicated insomniac.

    If you see any sleepy-but-amorous fish in Putah Creek, you will know why.

    My wife got up in another hour or so and asked me how my morning had been going.

    I ‘splain.  No, I didn’t tell her about the ice.

    She looks at me skeptically, disbelievingly.   Somebody who doesn’t know her might have thought she was at the proverbial fork in the road.  I knew better.  I knew which fork she had taken, I just didn’t know what it was going to sound like.

    “So, if a tree falls in the forest, and there is nobody there to see it…?”

    I hate her.

    I did, however, appreciate the “tree” metaphor.

    There is actually a very small percentage of people who are affected in this manner by antidepressant meds, but nowhere near 20%.  Almost always, it can be treated successfully, but every once in a while the only solution is a lop-it-off-of-me.

    If you do research on it, do NOT look at the pictures.  It is ugly.

    Ok, I have to go.  It’s getting late.  As you know, current medical philosophy is that you get the patient “up” right away after a medical event.  Hey, it’s worth a try.  It has got to have a better chance than “If I told you you had a beautiful body, would you hold it against me?” Right?

    Huh?  Oh.  Why, yes, yes I did –  Buster.

    • I, as a woman, have taken trazadone for years,never heard that side effect. How much did you take? Maybe instead of throwing them away maybe should try a smaller dose or give them to a woman.:)

      • I too took them as sleeping meds. Had no problem with them. I too took them as sleeping meds. Had no problem with them. I too took them as sleeping meds. Had no problem with them.

      • Tom Mcmasters-Stone

      • November 7, 2013 at 11:18 am
      • Reply

      I had never heard of it either! But, I am not taking any more chances, but certainly passing it along, while illegal, might have been the better option! Thank you my friend!

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