Stranger Than Fiction
I was looking through the mail today and one of the titles on the recent RWR caught my eye: Truth Really is Stranger Than Fiction.
The article spoke on how other authors used their real-life experiences to weave their own ficitional stories as a cathartic way to work through the fallout of those experiences. But it got me to thinking a whole different way.
I often hear stories, or experience things, and think--I could never write about that without the stories looking unrealistic or contrived. That may have happened in real life, but it would never fly in fiction.
I thought it would be fun to share some of our "stranger than fiction" moments. I know we all have them. Here are just a few of mine:
- When I was working at Washoe Medical Center, I was called in to perform a testicular ultrasound. When I got the patient, he told me the real story: he was a wanna-be transvestite on welfare. Medicaid wouldn't pay for a sex change operation, so he and his lover got shit-faced drunk and cut his testicles out. I scanned a scrotum swollen with blood because the vessels hadn't clotted off and continued to bleed. He was a very sweet guy. He was just born the wrong sex (his opinion, not mine).
- Same location, I was called to perform a penile ultrasound. After spending 30 minutes trying to get out of the exam with every excuse I could think of, I scanned this patient's penis to evaluate blood flow. Evidently, a penis can be "broken"--it's a break of tissue--and blood flow can be interrupted. Another nice guy. He held his member still for me while I scanned and told me the story of how he and his girlfriend got a little carried away.
- One of the previous officials at my husband's union was investigated for improper use of funds. To make an incredibly long and convoluted story short and straight, he was having more than one affair and using union money to make trips to see his lovers. He was married for over 20 years with 4 grown kids. He had one lover locally, and he had another lover eight hours south--one he has a 3 year old child with. Needless to say, he was prosecuted within an inch of his career. I don't know what ever happened to the lovers or the 3yo child, but he is still married. (And, yes, his wife knew all about the affairs.)
- I worked with a radiology fellow at UCSF who was model material--gorgeous, blonde, perfect. Her husband was a plastic surgeon, and we always used to half-joke that she must have had work done because she was so damned beautiful. She was also incredibly smart and funny and sweet, had two great kids with her husband, big home in the suburbs, and family money. You know--the type you want to strangle for having everything. She found out her DH was having an affair, left him and took the kids, limiting his access because of his erratic behavior. The husband's lover started stalking the wife and her kids--phone calls, notes, emails, following. The wife had to get a restraining order against the lover.
So, share! Tell us some of your stranger than fiction stories!!
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