Jim Sigafoose is a chiropractor, and one of his patients wrote the following story, “Billy the Life Cell”. The neat thing is that it captures the real essence of chiropractic, from a ‘layman’s’ perspective. And, it’s a cute story. Enjoy!
By Ralph Gilmore
It was just another morning in the body of Tom. In the thyroid, Billy the life cell was at work with the computer. He was trying to estimate how much calcium he was going to need to keep all of the bones, teeth and finger nails hard, and as usual he was dreaming of transferring to another department. In the workshop, the red blood cells were busy delivering oxygen and hauling off carbon dioxide.
In the network of pipes and ducts that ran past his department, Billy noticed that the traffic was exceedingly heavy. Several trucks loaded with combat troops had passed by, and his curiosity was aroused. He went to the communications panel marked voluntary, sensory and autonomic systems. He called his friend Jack in the brain, “What’s going on?” Billy asked. Jack replied, “Tom cut his finger last night and we were invaded by enemy forces. We lost a few of our boys, but our white cells now have the situation in hand. The invaders were defeated and our boys are merely working on the healing process today.” Billy was relieved, but as usual a little envious of Jack. The brain cells were the first to know everything.
In the processing and supply department below, the workers had very little to do. This morning’s shipment of raw materials had merely been two shipments of coffee, one donut and the usual shipment of aspirin. The supervisor was furious and he placed a call to central intelligence. He shouted “I can’t run this department on the deliveries that we’ve been getting. We received very few supplies this morning, and last night wasn’t much better. Only bread, chopped meat, beer and more pills. Lack of good food is one thing, but coupled with this continuous supply of aspirin and other drugs, we’re only going to run into trouble. My crew’s already informed me of a weakening in the wall of the stomach!” Central intelligence replied,
“I’m aware of your problems. Tom, as you know, is a bachelor. He eats irregularly, sleeps little, and drinks quite a bit. You’ll just have to convert some of his fat and reduce his body weight. He might not like his weight loss and start sending you more supplies. Do keep me posted on any further damage to the stomach.”
In the evening Billy noticed that things were hectic in the adrenal section. He called up Jack to see what was going on. Jack said, “Tom is playing a hectic game of basketball, and as you know, we are not used to this exercise.”
Jack’s reply was interrupted by a terrifying impact. The red emergency light flashed on and the speaker came to life. The voice heard was that of the Chief of Intelligence, “The situation is serious”, he said, “Tom has taken a fall and a vertebrae has shifted out of position. It’s blocking the main supply route to the heart. And as you know, we are equipped to make and repair bone, but we certainly can’t move them. Many of our friends are cut off from us, some have died, and many others will follow over a few months or possibly years. And if that route isn’t opened soon, we’ll all perish. If any of you come up with any ideas, please contact central intelligence.”
Billy and all of the cells in the thyroid department were upset over the loss of their friends. And as the weeks went by, they found alternate routes to the heart, they managed to ship small amounts of supplies and replacements but all this was doing was merely delaying the end.
One day, Billy had an idea. He thought, if a man caused the bone to move in the first place, then only man could move it back into place. He called Jack to ask his opinion. “Sounds great!” said Jack, “I’ll call Central Intelligence and see what can be done.” He called CI, and explained the conversation he had with Billy. “That just might be the answer, but as you know, I don’t have the final say so. All I can do is make a recommendation. We could put Tom in pain and perhaps then he will seek help.”
The next day the chief’s voice blared out over the speaker system. He said, “Yesterday Billy suggested to me that man caused the vertebra to shift out of position, and that only man can move it back. This certainly seemed logical to me.
Last night, as you know, we put Tom in pain. We’ve succeeded in getting him to seek help. Presently, he’s in a chiropractor’s office. He’s been x-rayed, and it has been explained to him that he has a subluxation of the second dorsal vertebra. It’s been explained that since this bone has been out of position for a long period of time, it will continue to slip out until its trained to stay. Tom must go for spinal adjustments or checkups several times a week.
He continued, in a few minutes, the doctor will move the bone and I want all available troops to be ready to move into the heart. Please understand in days to follow, the vertebra could slip again and some of you will be cut off. This is what all of you have been trained for and I know you will do a good job.
Shortly thereafter, the warning light went off, and the lifeline to the heart was open again. In the weeks that followed, there were numerous alerts. Despite the interruptions, the rebuilding process was in full swing. Definite progress was being made.
Months later while Billy was again dreaming of a transfer, he again noticed the adrenal section was working hard. He again called Jack and said, “What’s all of the excitement?” We were treated to Tom’s reaction to his chiropractor’s receptionist. Eyes department says she’s quite pretty. Judging from Tom’s reaction, I’d say it was love at first sight.
And a few months later, Tom married his chiropractor’s receptionist.
Billy, because of his suggestion of having a man move the bone was rewarded with a transfer to the brain. He was the happiest cell in Tom’s body. Well, with one exception: The Chief of Processing and Supply. With Tom’s marriage, came regular deliveries of well-balanced food and of course, Tom’s chiropractor convinced him of the dangers of medication.
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