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Physical: An American Checkup

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Physical: An American Checkup Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Physical is the story of a hard-living, happily married, middle-aged American (the author) who gets a three-day "executive checkup" at the Mayo Clinic and is thereby forced to confront his mortality, not to mention glove-wearing doctors and the pair of dominatrix-esque technicians who supervise his stress test quite strictly. James McManus must understand his revised actuarial odds in the light of his not-so-long-lived forebears and the fact that his youngest children are only six and five years old. He has to survive his own cardiovascular system, inherited habits, and genetic handicaps long enough to see Bea and Grace into adulthood. But with so much at stake, and in spite of his terror of death, he may not have the willpower to follow the Mayo clinicians' advice.

On a related health front, McManus's twenty-nine-year-old daughter, Bridget, has lived with juvenile diabetes since she was four, and the Bush Administration's opposition to the stem cell research that could save her life makes him feel like he "might have to do something rash." Meanwhile, should he have a vasectomy? Or try for another child, having lost his only son? How much longer will he be able to perform such manly feats without Viagra? Is his grateful wife sleeping with the brilliant ophthalmological surgeon who saved their daughter's vision? Physical negotiates the political and medical forks in the labyrinth of our health care system and calls for sanity and enlightenment in the stem cell research wars. It's a no-holds-barred, wrenching, but often hilarious portrait of the looming mortality of a privileged generation that can't believe the party's winding down, if not over.

Review:

"As McManus (author of the bestselling Positively Fifth Street) admits, he's been spending too much time on his duff, playing poker and eating third helpings of his wife's cooking. He also likes his liquor and his postprandial cigarette — all bad things given his family history of early heart attacks and death. In this disjointed, sometimes uproarious, sometimes powerful book, Mcmanus describes his experience of the ber-physical — the executive physical at the Mayo Clinic. McManus does amazing high-energy riffs on themes like our belief in our own immortality, and assesses the manner and personalities of his doctors as keenly as they examine him. One wonders whether he needed an $8,000 physical to learn he should exercise more, eat and drink less and cut out the smoking, but the tour of the remarkable Mayo Clinic and the best physical money can buy is well worthwhile. Equally strong is a recounting of his older daughter Bridget's struggle with juvenile diabetes, which leads to forceful but repetitious rants against President Bush for virtually banning embryonic stem cell research (which could lead to a cure for diabetes). Odd detours into other areas of McManus's physical life, like his reluctance to have a vasectomy, are less gratifying, and the book doesn't really add up to a look at health care in America today. Agent, Sloan Harris." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"McManus' grab bag of personal anecdote, medical history and polemic offers an entertaining and often insightful look at one man's experience with the health care system." San Francisco Chronicle

Review:

"McManus uses the lighthearted account of his physical to launch serious-as-a-heart-attack discussion of the current state of health care in the U.S., zeroing in on stem-cell research...and blasting government policies that impair progress by limiting research possibilities." Booklist (Starred Review)

Review:

"The soul-searching and personal history...are delivered with a combination of emotion and self-deprecating humor." Kirkus Reviews

Synopsis:

A wild ride through the dark heart of American health and health care, plus sex, drugs, and stem-cell wars.

PHYSICAL is the story of a hard-living, happily married, middle-aged American (the author) who gets a three-day "executive checkup" at the Mayo Clinic and is thereby forced to confront his mortality, not to mention glove-wearing doctors and the pair of dominatrix-esque technicians who supervise his stress test quite strictly. James McManus must understand his revised actuarial odds in the light of his not-so-long-lived forebears and the fact that his youngest children are only six and five years old. He has to survive his own cardiovascular system, inherited habits, and genetic handicaps long enough to see Bea and Grace into adulthood. But with so much at stake, and in spite of his terror of death, he may not have the willpower to follow the Mayo clinicians' advice.

On a related health front, McManus's twenty-nine-year-old daughter, Bridget, has lived with juvenile diabetes since she was four, and the Bush Administration's opposition to the stem-cell research that could save her life makes him feel like he "might have to do something rash." Meanwhile, should he have a vasectomy? Or try for another child, having lost his only son? How much longer will he be able to perform such manly feats without Viagra? Is his grateful wife sleeping with the brilliant opthalmological surgeon who saved their daughter's vision?

PHYSICAL negotiates the political and medical forks in the labyrinth of our health care system and calls for sanity and enlightenment in the stem-cell research wars. It's a no-holds-barred, wrenching, often hilarious portrait of the looming mortality of a privileged generation that can't believe the party's winding down, if not over.

Synopsis:

 
Includes a New Afterword

 

A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice

 

When hard-living, middle-aged American writer James McManus gets a three-day executive checkup at the Mayo Clinic, he is immediately forced to confront his mortality. Will he survive his own cardiovascular system and genetic inheritance long enough to see his young daughters grow up? With great candor and wit, McManus explores not only his own health but also that of the health care system itself and the political realities that have hamstrung stem cell research--which could help his eldest daughter's diabetes. Physical is an unabashed, wrenching, and often hilarious portrait of unwellness in America.

About the Author

James McManus, the author of Positively Fifth Street and four novels, including Going to the Sun, is the poker columnist for The New York Times. In 2001 he received the Peter Lisagor Award for sports journalism. A portion of Physical that appeared in Esquire has been anthologized in The Best American Science and Nature Writing, Best American Magazine Writing, and Best American Political Writing. He teaches at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780374232023
Subtitle:
An American Checkup
Author:
Mcmanus, James
Author:
McManus, James
Author:
Frederic, Patrick
Publisher:
Macmillan Audio
Subject:
General
Subject:
Health Care Delivery
Subject:
Essays
Subject:
Healthy Living
Subject:
Medical care
Subject:
Social medicine
Subject:
General Health & Fitness
Subject:
Health Care Issues
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20051227
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Language:
English
Illustrations:
6 cds, 7.5 hours
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
5.7 x 5.19 x 0.83 in

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Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Medical Biographies

Physical: An American Checkup Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$1.00 In Stock
Product details 272 pages Farrar Straus Giroux - English 9780374232023 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "As McManus (author of the bestselling Positively Fifth Street) admits, he's been spending too much time on his duff, playing poker and eating third helpings of his wife's cooking. He also likes his liquor and his postprandial cigarette — all bad things given his family history of early heart attacks and death. In this disjointed, sometimes uproarious, sometimes powerful book, Mcmanus describes his experience of the ber-physical — the executive physical at the Mayo Clinic. McManus does amazing high-energy riffs on themes like our belief in our own immortality, and assesses the manner and personalities of his doctors as keenly as they examine him. One wonders whether he needed an $8,000 physical to learn he should exercise more, eat and drink less and cut out the smoking, but the tour of the remarkable Mayo Clinic and the best physical money can buy is well worthwhile. Equally strong is a recounting of his older daughter Bridget's struggle with juvenile diabetes, which leads to forceful but repetitious rants against President Bush for virtually banning embryonic stem cell research (which could lead to a cure for diabetes). Odd detours into other areas of McManus's physical life, like his reluctance to have a vasectomy, are less gratifying, and the book doesn't really add up to a look at health care in America today. Agent, Sloan Harris." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "McManus' grab bag of personal anecdote, medical history and polemic offers an entertaining and often insightful look at one man's experience with the health care system."
"Review" by , "McManus uses the lighthearted account of his physical to launch serious-as-a-heart-attack discussion of the current state of health care in the U.S., zeroing in on stem-cell research...and blasting government policies that impair progress by limiting research possibilities."
"Review" by , "The soul-searching and personal history...are delivered with a combination of emotion and self-deprecating humor."
"Synopsis" by ,
A wild ride through the dark heart of American health and health care, plus sex, drugs, and stem-cell wars.

PHYSICAL is the story of a hard-living, happily married, middle-aged American (the author) who gets a three-day "executive checkup" at the Mayo Clinic and is thereby forced to confront his mortality, not to mention glove-wearing doctors and the pair of dominatrix-esque technicians who supervise his stress test quite strictly. James McManus must understand his revised actuarial odds in the light of his not-so-long-lived forebears and the fact that his youngest children are only six and five years old. He has to survive his own cardiovascular system, inherited habits, and genetic handicaps long enough to see Bea and Grace into adulthood. But with so much at stake, and in spite of his terror of death, he may not have the willpower to follow the Mayo clinicians' advice.

On a related health front, McManus's twenty-nine-year-old daughter, Bridget, has lived with juvenile diabetes since she was four, and the Bush Administration's opposition to the stem-cell research that could save her life makes him feel like he "might have to do something rash." Meanwhile, should he have a vasectomy? Or try for another child, having lost his only son? How much longer will he be able to perform such manly feats without Viagra? Is his grateful wife sleeping with the brilliant opthalmological surgeon who saved their daughter's vision?

PHYSICAL negotiates the political and medical forks in the labyrinth of our health care system and calls for sanity and enlightenment in the stem-cell research wars. It's a no-holds-barred, wrenching, often hilarious portrait of the looming mortality of a privileged generation that can't believe the party's winding down, if not over.

"Synopsis" by ,
 
Includes a New Afterword

 

A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice

 

When hard-living, middle-aged American writer James McManus gets a three-day executive checkup at the Mayo Clinic, he is immediately forced to confront his mortality. Will he survive his own cardiovascular system and genetic inheritance long enough to see his young daughters grow up? With great candor and wit, McManus explores not only his own health but also that of the health care system itself and the political realities that have hamstrung stem cell research--which could help his eldest daughter's diabetes. Physical is an unabashed, wrenching, and often hilarious portrait of unwellness in America.

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