Good health is yours. . . if you can afford it

For most of us, getting our health checked is a patchwork arrangement. While some people go to the doctor for a yearly checkup, most only drop in when something hurts, we've turned a funny color, or we can't stop coughing.

Once we're up on the crinkly, paper-covered table, we go through the regular list of low-level checks, including things like reflexes, blood pressure, and eye dilation--basically, all the tests necessary to establish that we aren't actually dead. Once the doctor has a pretty good idea of what's wrong, we end up with a few more procedures, which are generally scheduled at the most inconvenient times possible.

Ultimately, we get to return to the hospital several times over a period of days or weeks, fighting both our symptoms and a low-level fear that we've picked up the 48-hour Ebola that's going around.