CHICAGO, IL -- PBS TV reporter Miles O'Brien recently gave his left arm for a news story.
Two weeks ago, he was filming an investigative report about authorities' suspicion that photographic equipment was being stolen by members of an Asian crime organization similar to the Mafia when a heavy crate full of camera gear fell on his left arm.
"I'm not going to lie; it hurt like hell," O'Brien says, "but I didn't want to stop filming for anything as insignificant as a trip to a hospital emergency room."
Instead, despite the agony, he continued to report, live, from the scene. The resulting footage, including the unfortunate mishap, which was shown on PBS News Hour, may win the journalist a coveted Pulitzer Prize or, at the very least, an Edward R. Murrow Award. Reportedly, President Obummer is also considering honoring O'Brien with a Medal of Freedom, if the president can find his pen and 'phone.
It was only when O'Brien's arm swelled to the size of the CNN Center and "hurt so bad that I thought it was giving birth" that the intrepid journalist sought medical attention. The doctor diagnosed the journalist as suffering from "severe stupidity," saying the blow had shut off blood to the part of the reporter's brain responsible for making judgments.
O'Brien was admitted to the hospital, wherein his forearm, continuing to swell, assumed the dimensions of the hospital's west wing and became numb. "I was greatly relieved," O'Brien says, "because I thought, since the pain had stopped, I must have gotten better."
His physician recommended an emergency fasciotomy, to relieve the pressure on O'Brien's brain, but, unfortunately, the doctor had to amputate O'Brien's arm instead.
"It came down," the doctor told him, "to choosing between your life and your limb, and, as good as your story about the criminal activity in Japan and the Philippines had been, I didn't think it was worth your life, so I decided to take the limb."
O'Brien agrees with the doctor's call. "The story was worth my left arm, but I wouldn't have given my right one for it, let alone my life."
Police are investigating the "accident" that cost O'Brien his arm, considering it "suspicious," although O'Brien thinks the incident of the falling crate was "merely coincidental."
After rehabilitation, the journalist plans to see what he can poke his nose into in regard to the criminal elements in Chicago and New York.
His healthcare is 'all paid up," he says, "just in case": He's enrolled in Obummercare.