By David “Dickens” Noonan: A tongue-in-cheek adaptation of Charles Dickens “A Christmas Carol”
Marley was dead, to begin with. Scrooge had signed the register of his burial himself. Then that damnable shoulder injury. But, the injury was past. There was no doubt whatsoever about that. The scar had healed, the insurance company had paid the bill and Scrooge was back at work – working his miserly tight-fisted hand upon the grindstone! The whole affair was dead as a doornail.
Once upon a time – of all the good days of the year, on Christmas Eve – old Scrooge sat busy in his counting house. It was a cold, bleak, biting weather and he could hear the people in the court outside go wheezing up and down, beating their hands upon their breasts and stamping their feet upon the pavement stones to warm them. And the back pain! Oh, the back pain and the headaches! Old Scrooge could hear them complaining about every ache and soreness as they passed his door.
“Bah!” Scrooge would exclaim, “Humbug! Your injuries are past, get back to work!”
“A Merry Christmas, Uncle!” cried a cheerful voice, “How has your shoulder been feeling?” It was the voice of Scrooge’s nephew, James Mulholland, who came upon him so quickly that this was his first intimation that he had approached.
“Bah!” Scrooge replied, “Humbug! The scar is healed up enough! I have work to do, nephew.”
“A humbug, Uncle? Surely you don’t mean that? What of the fascial restrictions?” asked Scrooge’s nephew.
“Nephew,” replied Scrooge, “as I said. Humbug! When I live in a world of fools such as this that go about with ‘Fascial Restrictions’ upon their lips and come see you and your cohorts to talk about ‘compensatory movement patterns’ and ‘the residue of trauma’ – spending all their time ‘healing’ and finding themselves a year older and not an hour richer!”
“There are many things from which we might derive good, by which I have not profited, I dare say,” returned the nephew. “Myofascial Release being one of them. A kind, forgiving, charitable and pleasant experience – the only that I know of – when men and women seem of one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of others as fellow-passengers to the grave and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys! So I say God bless it!”
“You’re quite a powerful speaker, sir,” Scrooge dryly replied, “It’s a wonder you didn’t go into Parliament.”
“Uncle, as I do each year, I invite you to come see us at Inner Circle and take care of that shoulder.”
“Good afternoon!” Scrooge replied.
His bothersome nephew, upon leaving, had let two more men enter the business. They were tall gentlemen, pleasant to behold and now stood, with their hats off, in Scrooge’s office and bowed to him.
“Scrooge and Marley’s, I believe?” said one of the gentlemen, referring to his list. “My name is Timothy Alloway, this is my colleague, David Noonan. Have we the pleasure of addressing Mr. Scrooge or Mr. Marley?”
“Mr. Marley has been dead these seven years,“ Scrooge replied. “He died seven years ago this very night.”
“We have no doubt his wish to improve his body is well represented by his surviving partner,” started Tim, presenting his credentials.
“At this festive time of year,” began Dave, “it is more than usually desirable that we make some provision for those suffering from pain at Inner Circle – that they might benefit from our expertise with Myofascial Release in addressing their issues. What appointment time may we put you down for?”
“Haven’ they already seen the surgeon and pain management?” inquired Scrooge.
“Nearly all of them, sir,” replied Tim.
“And the physical therapy apps on their phones, they are still in working order?”
“They are, still,” replied Dave, “I only wish I could say that they were not.”
“Oh! I was afraid, from what you said at first, that something bad had occurred to stop them in their useful course,” replied Scrooge. “I am glad to hear it.”
“We are attempting to spread the word about Myofascial Release and how it can help address pain and dysfunction that other interventions have been unable to.” The gentlemen replied. “When shall we schedule you?”
“Never.” Replied Scrooge. “I wish to be left alone, gentlemen. My injury has happened and has been taken care of. So, to you, I say Good Afternoon!”
And with that, Scrooge pushed them out the door and slammed it – locking it against further intrusions.