Saying Goodbye to Einstein (The Veterinarian)

About six weeks ago a man brought his fourteen year old cat named Einstein into my hospital for an examination. He obviously cared about Einstein and believed that he had suffered some sort of a wound to his face and jaw region.

I had to tell him then that the chance was overwhelming that the lesion wasn’t a wound, but rather a nasty malignant tumor that had reached a state beyond feasible removal. We attempted to “treat the treatable” with antibiotics and steroids, but as originally predicted the treatment had no effect.

This gentleman had to euthanize Einstein last Friday. He was understandably upset; a real grown man does often cry when they suffer a genuine heartfelt loss. While we were in the actual process of calmly restraining the patient, finding a vein, and giving the lethal injection, Einstein’s owner spoke with me. He never stopped caressing his cat in the process.

Einstein’s owner had been to Vietnam on four different active engagement deployments. He had been bayoneted and shot. He had thought that after every single active engagement completed, he had finished his obligated active service duty and that he would be allowed to head home to finish his enrollment in a non-war zone. He was not “exactly” given the option.

He also related a near death experience that he had at the hospital a few years ago while suffering an aortic dissection or aortic rupture. Only a tiny percentage of people survive such a condition. He told me that while he was lying there waiting to be rushed somewhere for surgery, he kept trying to joke with the nurses and the doctors attending to him. He was more relaxed than they were and apparently they had been extremely alarmed. He said “Dr. Cribb, after everything I had been through in Vietnam, after all of that carnage and pain, I thought to myself, if I have to go, this bleeding out thing isn’t such a bad way to make my exit.”

And during the caressing, and the shedding of tears, and the melancholy smiles of shared understanding over his conversation and experiences, Einstein passed away peacefully in silence. There was a feeling of lightness in that room afterwards, sad but still light. We continued to share a few more words about all of it within that lightness for a moment or two, but eventually it became time to part. With a somber smile and a steady hand, Einstein’s owner scooped him up in a blanket and took him home for burial.

Dr. Cribb          2018

The Inheritance of All Healers (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 156)

“One time,” said Castle, “when I was about fifteen, there was a mutiny near here on a Greek ship bound from Hong Kong to Havana with a load of wicker furniture. the mutineers got control of the ship, didn’t know how to run her, and smashed her up on the rocks near “Papa”Monzano’s castle. Everybody drowned but the rats. The rats and the wicker furniture came ashore.”

That seemed the end of the story, but I couldn’t be sure. “So?”

“So some people got free furniture, and some people got bubonic plague. At Father’s hospital, we had fourteen hundred deaths inside of ten days. Have you ever seen anyone die of bubonic plague?”

“That unhappiness has not bee mine.”

“The lymph glands in the groin and the armpits swell to the size of grapefruit.”

“I can well believe it.”

“After death, the body turns black—coals to Newcastle in the case of San Lorenzo. When the plague was having everything its own way, the House of Hope and Mercy in the Jungle looked like Auschwitz or Buchenwald. We had stacks of dead so deep and wide that a bulldozer actually stalled trying to shove them toward a common grave. Father worked without sleep for days, worked not only without sleep but without saving many lives, either.”

“Well, finish your story anyway.”

“Where was I?”

“The bubonic plague. The bulldozer was stalled by corpses.”

“Oh, yes. Anyway, one sleepless night I stayed up with Father while he worked. It was all we could do to find a live patient to treat. In bed after bed after bed we found dead people.

And Father started giggling,” Castle continued.

“He couldn’t stop. He walked out into the night with his flashlight. He was still giggling. He was making the flashlight beam dance over all the dead people stacked outside. He put his hand on my head, and do you know what that marvelous man said to me?” asked Castle.


“‘Son,’ my father said to me, ‘someday this will all be yours.'”

Cat’s Cradle

Kurt Vonnegut          1963

Until Death and Sex Do Us Part or Do We Genuinely Do (Love vs Sex 232)

The conflict between what we’re told we feel and what we really feel may be the richest source of confusion, dissatisfaction, and unnecessary suffering of our time.

Sex at Dawn

Ryan and Jethá 2010

In my profession, I have observed on a persistent basis how people perceive and experience death over the last twenty years. The sad truth is that most approach death in a manner or mimicry that they have observed on television or in the antics of others who are repeating a production of their own theatrical indoctrination. I find this phenomena heartbreaking because it turns a profound life experience and often a sincere loss and sorrow into more of an act or an emotionally volatile distraction. It morphs the relevance and grace of reality, the appreciation of our ability to form union, and the permanence of loss, into a stage show of paradoxical egocentric withdrawal.

The television seems to obtain its preeminent authority figure status on the enlightenment and instruction of death and mourning primarily due to the lack of the surrounding organic entities, meaning the people, of our childhood and young adulthood, failing miserably to engage with us in a stable, sincere, and contextual reflection on the matter. In other words, the organic authority entities in our close circle of perceptive psychological imprinting and recon withdraw themselves from the difficult topic of death leaving us blind and bewildered with a proposed shame or guilt about the topic “we must not speak about” or “we must pretend does not exist.” But inevitably, despite this trick of avoidance, we know we will eventually be thrown into the experience of its unavoidable reality and be confronted with the fear we have been taught all too well to associate with it. Thus, we seek an authority that the greater world seems to applaud and at the same time is incapable of bringing shame or guilt crashing down upon our psyche via the vulnerability of a true personal interaction. Bada-boom, bada-bam…the Television God authority figure satisfies all the prerequisites and who doesn’t want to be the best actor or actress on the screen? Comprehension, clarity, and peace always follow such acting and pretending if you act and pretend long enough and well enough, don’t they? Isn’t that the master lesson of madness? Yet, we most often fall into the trap and if everyone else bows down to the TV God, can doing so be so pathologic? At least we act in unison with others and in unison we can always find some contentment, some transcendence of assurance, even if we all fall down together into insanity and the experiences of anti-existence. At least, we don’t stand against or outside of the herd. At least, the herd cannot chastise us for behaving oddly or like an abomination.

So, most treat the experience of death like bad TV because that has become the norm of perception and interaction by the herd which is fearful of vulnerable reality. This herd prefers instead to promote a plausible and satiating illusion of genuine engagement while in truth profoundly disengaging from one another and promoting an isolated existence for all. Death becomes a show and a show that doesn’t even truly involve the dead. It’s a one man show of drama and attention and a power grab. It is something advertised as a sexual union that in fact only happens to be masterbation with a great marketing makeover.

And so, it is also with sex; the repression, the passively suggested and unspoken shame and/or guilt, the avoidance and withdrawal from any kind of an honest and open discussion with our partners and peers and our children because someone might be embarrassed or perceived to be dolt or a pervert or a fool. Our embarrassment and ignorance and fear can’t be admitted, so that we may learn from and laugh at it like we should, but it can certainly be passed onto others to let them falter forevermore as we do. Do unto others as has been done unto you. A second bada-boom, bada-bam, and the God of Porn becomes our charismatic and trustworthy authority figure. Instantly, we have a paramount fuck coach to show us everything we need to know about the giving and receiving end of things. He gives us the appropriate cues, the appropriate grooming and groping techniques, the right dirty words to hypnotise our partner(s) into becoming our helpless plaything(s), and brandishes the toys we must purchase and use in our adventures if we ever hope to experience a reputation as a more than capable Casanova or our own personal feelings of titillating orgasmic ecstasy. A bonus aspect that the God of Porn offers over the Television God of Death, is that worshippers may opt and often do to just lose themselves in the isolated viewing of their “instruction.” The reality in sex never even need cum. And certainly, anything outside the realm of the Porn God must be boring or religiously oppressive or anti-orgasmic. The Porn God knows all, just like the Weatherman. Venturing outside is boring when you can just stay inside and remain glued to the weather forecast. Forget your eyes and ears, your visceral senses and what you might see and feel, and forfeit the weather and sex to what an entertainer tells you to believe…to assume…to experience. Why look elsewhere or “in-where” when the Porn God is so damn popular and it’s so hip amongst your friends to be one of his groupies? Again popular inclusion based on willful ignorance, plausible illusion, and genuine interactive withdrawal, trumps a reality which requires the admittance of vulnerability to discover and experience true sexual union and upper transcendence. It has almost become hearsay to speak of Tantra or spiritual union or upper transcendence or love as potentials of profound sexual reality. People respond with smirks, cynicism, and laughter to such while they eagerly embrace the replacement of such feelings and energy with disrespectful objectification of one another, synthetic replacement of organic partners and parts, and a skewed overriding emphasis on frictional orgasmic addictive gratification and distraction from reality. Odd huh?, that the exponential propagation, exposure, and diffusion of porn throughout humanity has failed to produce sexual experiences and unions which foster more universal contentment, harmony, bliss, peace, and stability in our culture.

Until death and sex do us part or do we genuinely engage, the playacting will produce perpetual telltale glitches of instability marked particularly by emotional volatility, anxiety/depression, transference, and undulating paranoid schizophrenic activity. A confused “reality” of revolving jealousy/paranoia, the need to over-dominate others, intermittent spontaneous withdrawal, isolated posturing of the psyche, and egocentric filtering of all, is the reward for yielding our visceral senses and direct personal feelings to the supposed expectations and emotions of an imaginary authority figure who embodies nothing more than the vampiric emptiness and hunger of a fallen, soulless and lifeless, undead herd. We must accept and embrace the vulnerability inherent in genuine reality if we are to understand our true organo-spiritual natures and the full extent of our ability to live and form union with others. There is no other way and unfortunately, pretending to live like someone else will not suffice.




Killing the Future and Stealing the Past (WPMY 120)

In our country, it seems that most prefer to talk of and about dead people


the things that they really want to kill,

as opposed to participating in a truly genuine and peaceful conversation,

in the actual present,

with a living entity capable of speaking for and about themselves.

One might associate such speaking for the dead

as a form of living in the past,

and speaking of killing whoever in the future,

as a form of living in the future.

Appreciative remembrance and the celebration of a passed life,

has always seemed more devout and profound to me,

when the living minimize their dilution of the essence passed.

Vitriolic rhetoric and war mongering about killing in the future,

is always proclaimed most vehemently by those most terrified of living in the present


having to acknowledge that their “enemy” might be more justified in their opinions

and actions,

than they happen to be themselves.

Killing the future and stealing the past,

certainly makes it easier for people

to avoid the truthful reality of the present.

Cribb          2016