One of my old mates from Hampton (the REAL HU) got me thinking about a new show that ought to be on TV. In fact, I KNOW we ought to. I don’t think we’ve had a plot that surrounded a Black female medical professional since Diahann Carroll played Julia. That’s not true. There’s Jada Pinkett as Hawthorne. But they are both nurses. It’s time for a doctor. With a stethoscope. Not a patient chart on a clip board.
Luckily for the TV execs, I’ve crafted the first episode.
Fade to TV Land
Lily Skylar, Black Super hero MD!
*Guitar rift, turn table scratching, rap intro*
Weary of waiting for her imaginary husband to materialize, Lily Skylar, pediatric MD throws off the covers and hops out of bed. She watches the crisp down comforter settle into a pile on the bed, slowly deflating. It was a sunny Tuesday morning. A mock Spring breeze floated through the gap in her apartment window, inviting her outside. It was her day off and the weather was going to go back to being bad tomorrow. She may as well get out and enjoy New York, the city she loved but rarely ever got to see in the daylight. The relationship struck her to be one similar to a clandestine love affair with a married man.
Throwing on yoga pants, sneakers and green t-shirt, she scurried down the stairs and headed towards Central Park for a nice long run. Everyone seemed to be outside today – Old ladies with shopping carts, gay men with their puppies…even the wretched homeless guys had come out from their allies to enjoy the unseasonably warm air. Lily ran down in between a group of guys throwing a Frisbee to get to the running path. Suddenly, she heard one of them cry out.
Instinctively, she looked back and saw a gangly youth writhing on the grass in pain. He was clutching his chest, gasping for air. As Lily sprinted back towards him, a crowd began to form. She dropped down to his side.
“Give him some air!” she commanded, her Grenadian accent getting thicker with agitation.
“Who are you?” one of the boys friends asked in fear. “Are you gonna rob him? For godsake he’s gasping for air! How are you going to rob him when he can’t even breathe??”
“Shut up and call 911,” Lily snapped. “Just because I’m Black with an Island accent and telling everyone to clear out of here doesn’t mean I’m going to rob a dying man. I’m a doctor.”
“Oh God,” groaned another of the Frisbee throwers. “He’s dying!”
That was a poor choice of words, Lily muttered to herself. It suddenly occurred to her that this was the reason she’d been transferred to the adolescent unit and away from the toddlers…too blunt.
The gasping boy’s breath was getting more and more shallow. Lily tilted his head a peered into his throat. Something was lodged in it.
“Something’s caught in there!” she gasped. “We can’t wait for the ambulance. We have to get it out now!”
As if sensing the urgency of the matter, the Universe began to provide all that Lily needed. A Puerto Rican gang banger walked by, clad in spiked leather.
“You!” she yelled. “Banger from the 80s! I know you have a switch blade. Give it to me!”
Frightened by the authority in her voice, he obliged immediately.
“And you! Homeless guy sucking on Hennessey…I need that liquor to sterilize the blade.”
The homeless man hesitated.
Lily poured the warm liquor over the shiny blade. The crowd murmured in anticipation of what would happen next. As she began to cut open his throat to dislodge to foreign object, everyone held their breath. Even the birds stopped chirping. The wail of the ambulance was far in the distance.
I need to create a pathway, she thought.
“There’s a little girl drinking a soda that her mom just bought,” she said to no one. “Go get her straw.”
“Couldn’t we just ask the vendor for a brand new straw instead,” asked one of the bystanders in a panic.
“We could, but that would be less dramatic for the pilot of my new show – Lily Skylar MD,” she retorted. “Now go get the little girl’s straw and make her cry!”
With the straw safely in hand, and the wail of a robbed girl and a New York ambulance getting louder, Lily stuck the straw in the dying youth’s exposed through. With her index finger, she scooped out what was blocking his airway. A walnut. There are no walnut trees in Central Park…
The young man gasped and began to breathe normally through his straw. The crowd cheered wildly, hoisting a bloody, visibly shaken Lily into the air. The paramedics arrived just then to put the young man onto a stretcher and to rush him off to the hospital.
His pale hand reached out to touch her, assumedly in gratitude. His eyes were wide as saucers, speaking volumes. It was a conversation only the two of them would understand.
“You’re welcome,” Lily said benevolently.
The boy stuck his middle finger up as he was being carted away. Lily balked in shock.
“That was his favorite Elton John t-shirt,” his friend explained. “And you screwed it up with his blood. You coulda just done the Heimlich y’know?”
He turned to play catch with his friends, leaving Lily lost in her thoughts. Where had the walnut come from? Hmmm….
Stay tuned for our next series: Lily Skylar, P.I.!