Roy Exum: How "Mrs. S" Got $40 Grand

Sunday, September 22, 2013 - by Roy Exum
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

I searched for Dr. Isaac Krazen, said to be a family-practice physician in New York City, on Saturday morning because I was about to die to talk to him. All my searches proved futile. But when I searched for a law firm named “Becker & Epstein,” I found out Epstein, Becker & Green is one of the largest and best health care law firms in the United States.

Digging further, I learned that Steven B. Epstein and a childhood pal, Jeffery Becker, founded the law firm in October of 1973. In 1978 Ronald Green joined the law firm, adding a third name to the letterhead. Thusly, I was able to assume “Becker & Epstein,” as you will soon learn, existed for just five years in the mid-70s. That’s over a quarter-century ago.

The reason for my mystery centers around a lady known only as “Mrs. S.” and a wonderful story for all that have now grown old. I want to believe with all my heart the story is true; it is reputed to be. It was written by the equally-mysterious Dr. Isaac Krazen, who is believed to have once been the primary doctor of our extremely wealthy “Mrs. S.”

One more note before you read the doctor’s tale. Incontinence, or lack of bladder control, is a dearth of the aged. I don’t wish to offend anyone, but as I notice more and more of my friends “who really gotta’ go” when the urge hits, I find -- as Dr. Krazen once did -- that laughter is the best medicine of all.

Dr. Krazen, if you please:

* * *

Many know Mrs. S from Manhattan, New York, mostly because she's rich and lives on the luxurious and well-lit Fifth Avenue. From the window of her home one can see Central Park, and the beautiful lake at its center. 

Mrs. S wasn't interested in buying things. She already had it all. She didn't want to give anything either, because she already gave more than expected of her. She wasn't interested in travel because she had done so already and now it tired her. Movies, concerts and the theatre bored her. Relatives and children vexed her and her doctor did not allow her to eat sweets.

Her doctor also ordered her to do a lot of walking, and Mrs. S did as he asked. Each morning she walked for a mile and a half. Most people could walk that in 15-20 minutes, but Mrs. S carried the weight of 96 years, and so the walk took about two hours, while she was accompanied at all times by her personal chauffeur, in his ironed suit, driving slowly along the road and keeping an eye on her.

People passing by are impressed by her. Many know her. Few are jealous. They'd like to be rich, but also young and healthy. The combination of riches and old age is more thought-provoking that envy-provoking.   

But there's a problem, Mrs S. needs to pee frequently, and along the route there were no bathrooms. This was just the kind of problem rich people can solve. At the opening of each of the buildings on this luxurious street, stands a doorman meticulously dressed and charged with guaranteeing no one comes in but the tenants. The lobby also has a nice and clean bathroom. Messengers, on behalf of Mrs. S, visited five of these buildings, talked to the doormen, and gave them large sums of money to make sure they will always allow the old lady to use the bathrooms.

One spring morning Mrs. S went on her walk. She was up to 79th street when she needed to get to a bathroom. The usual doorman was ill and his replacement did not allow her to enter. Frustrated, she went into a nearby funeral home.

As she came in, she was asked if she came to Jeffery Green's funeral. She did not like to lie but felt she had to get to that bathroom. She was then handed a guest book to sign her name and address so that the family can sent her a card for coming to pay her respects. She then proceeded to the bathroom to finally relieve herself.

Two weeks later she got a letter from the law office of Becker & Epstein: "Dear Mrs. S, we are executing the will of the late Jeffery Green, deceased these two weeks. Mr. Green had no relatives and so he has bequeathed his fortune to those who came to his funeral. Since you were there, you are entitled to a seventh of his fortune, here is a check for $40,000."

It was a large sum then, but Mrs. S had more, and so she donated it to the hospital where her doctor was working, where it helped to save more than a few lives.

And that doctor is me. I guess you have to know where to pee.

* * *

Did you know that doctors are now using Botox, of all things, to help with some cases of incontinence? There are other new techniques and medicines available, too, that urologists are finding help those who “really gotta’ go.”

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