Islamabad - Pakistan
“Catch-22” By Joseph Heller 2
It was love at first sight.
The first time Yossarian saw the chaplain he fell madly in love with him.
Yossarian was in the hospital with a pain in his liver that fell just short of being
jaundice. The doctors were puzzled by the fact that it wasn’t quite jaundice. If it became
jaundice they could treat it. If it didn’t become jaundice and went away they could
discharge him. But this just being short of jaundice all the time confused them.
Each morning they came around, three brisk and serious men with efficient mouths
and inefficient eyes, accompanied by brisk and serious Nurse Duckett, one of the ward
nurses who didn’t like Yossarian. They read the chart at the foot of the bed and asked
impatiently about the pain. They seemed irritated when he told them it was exactly the
‘Still no movement?’ the full colonel demanded.
The doctors exchanged a look when he shook his head.
‘Give him another pill.’ Nurse Duckett made a note to give Yossarian another pill, and
the four of them moved along to the next bed. None of the nurses liked Yossarian.
Actually, the pain in his liver had gone away, but Yossarian didn’t say anything and the
doctors never suspected. They just suspected that he had been moving his bowels and
not telling anyone.
Yossarian had everything he wanted in the hospital. The food wasn’t too bad, and his
meals were brought to him in bed. There were extra rations of fresh meat, and during
the hot part of the afternoon he and the others were served chilled fruit juice or chilled
chocolate milk. Apart from the doctors and the nurses, no one ever disturbed him. For a
little while in the morning he had to censor letters, but he was free after that to spend the
rest of each day lying around idly with a clear conscience. He was comfortable in the
hospital, and it was easy to stay on because he always ran a temperature of