Mrs. Flush: "Hi, I have an appointment in 20 minutes with Dr. Grumpy, and won't be able to make it. My kid clogged the toilet, and it's backed up all over the floor. I have to stay here and wait for the emergency plumber."
Mary: "Okay, that's fine. Just call us when you have time to reschedule and..."
Mrs. Flush: "I will. Are you going to charge me for the last minute cancel? I can text you a picture if you need proof."
Thank you for your recent letter asking that I send $75 to remain in your online doctor directory. I'd put its name up here, but I'm not even going to give you the traffic.
Regrettably, I won't be sending you the $75, and really don't give care if you remove my name.
I'm sure this hurts your feelings, so I'd like to explain why I'm not sending you any money.
1. I never signed up for your directory in the first place. In fact, your letter asking me to renew was the first I'd heard of you.
2. Most companies take credit cards for payment. The fact that you only accept 2 methods of payment is a little alarming. One was for me to do a direct bank-to-bank transfer, and your letter included your bank name, account number, and routing information. This is not a typical way to pay for a medical listing.
3. The other way you accept payment is for me to send a cashier's check to an address in Bucharest, Romania. Nice try.
4. Your math was somewhat concerning, as the letter says that for $75 I get "1 year + 3 FREE months! That's 18 months for only $75." Granted, maybe you use a different calendar than I do.
5. You spelled "doctor" as "docter."
6. You didn't spell my name correctly. Or my street name for that matter. Or even my fucking city. This does not give me a lot of confidence in your ability to provide an accurate listing for my $75.
7. Lastly, as if the above weren't big enough concerns, I was still curious to look at the website listed on your letter. I was suitably impressed to see that it:
- Had nothing on it mentioning a doctor locating service.
- The first link featured said "MEET BEAUTIFUL RUSSIAN GIRLS!"
- The second link was for an online Viagra pharmacy (maybe useful if you click on the first link).
- The third link said "This domain name is for sale! Click here to buy it."
Due to the death of our 15-year-old television, Mrs. Grumpy and I bought a new TV for our bedroom a few months ago.
So, early Sunday morning, around 1:00 a.m., we were both sound asleep when the TV woke us up. It was making a loud obnoxious beeping sound. Then the screen suddenly flipped on, all white, with gazillion megawatt intensity. Snowball's shadow was burned into the wall where he was sleeping.
Then, in huge letters, the screen said "CABLE CONNECTION HAS BEEN LOST."
Like I give a fuck when I'm sleeping.
After the adrenaline rush calmed down I got up, turned the TV off, and went back to bed.
20 minutes later I'd just started dozing again when the beeping and prison floodlight effects started again, but this time the screen said "CABLE CONNECTION HAS BEEN RESTORED."
So tonight I'm going to figure out how to turn this thoroughly worthless message off.
Attention TV manufacturers:
This is NOT a feature I want. If I'm watching TV, and the cable goes out, I will notice it and do not need you to tell me. Conversely, if I'm not watching TV, and the cable goes out, I DON'T CARE. Waking me up to let me know is only going to piss me off.
The British Medical Journal recently contributed an important piece of literature to answer an age-old nurses station question: "Who the hell ate the chocolate?"
The article's introduction states "Subjectively, we noted that chocolate boxes emptied quickly and that
determining which healthcare professionals ate the most chocolates was a
common source of workplace conflict. Literature on chocolate
consumption by healthcare workers in a hospital setting is lacking."
To study this critical issue, the authors placed 2 boxes of chocolates (1 each of Cadbury Roses and Nestlé Quality Street) at the nurses stations of 4 floors in 3 separate hospitals (258 pieces of chocolate in total). They were covertly observed and critical data collected.
They found that:
1. When a box of chocolates is placed out on the ward, there's an average delay of 12 minutes before someone opens it. The Cadbury box was more likely to be opened first.
2. The half-life of a box (time until 50% of chocolates had been eaten) was 99 minutes. Chocolates that were still present at the end of the 4-hour observation period were deemed "lost to follow-up." Overall, 74% of chocolates were eaten during the observation time.
3. Chocolates are consumed in a non-linear fashion: initially there's a flurry of consumption when a box is opened
("Oooh! Chocolates!") which gradually tapers off ("No, I've had enough")
with increasing intervals between pieces being eaten ("I'm trying to
4. Cadbury chocolates were consumed faster than Nestlé.
5. A statistical breakdown of "WHO ATE THE CHOCOLATE?!!!" revealed the following:
"Medical students who reached for one were shot."
Personally, I believe further research is needed, and propose the following:
1. A similar study comparing dark vs. milk chocolate.
2. A study powered to prove/disprove that ones with nougat are the last to be eaten.
3. Comparison of M&M's (plain vs. peanut vs. pretzel vs. dark vs. peanut butter). For example, in my office the half-life of a 1 lbs. bag of the peanut-butter ones is about 38 seconds, while up front the plain ones go faster.
4. Getting a staff breakdown to figure out who's pushing in the bottom to see what filling it is. And when you find out, beating them senseless.
More research of this type is necessary, and so, when you hit up a doctor to bring in some chocolates, remind them you're only doing so for science.
Lastly, I loved the "authors' conflict of interest disclosure" from the article:
"Competing interests: All authors have completed the ICMJE uniform disclosure form and declare: no
support from any organisation for the submitted work; no financial
relationships with any organisations that might have an interest in the
submitted work in the previous three years. Other non-financial relevant
interests: PRG is particularly sentimental about, and incredibly fond
of, Lindt Lindor white chocolate truffles; DJM advocates abstinence as
the only effective way to avoid chocolate over-consumption; PLRN is
influenced by the intoxicating smells emanating from the Cadbury’s
chocolate factory at Bournville near his home; FDA supports her native
Ghana’s cocoa exports by eating a single Heroes chocolate (Cadbury)
every night; HEC declares an interest in polishing off leftover Bounty
chocolates (Mars); RDM’s Germanic background means that he is
hard-wired, like his brethren, to love all milk chocolate; and CAM
reports a preference for Milkybar buttons (Nestlé)."
It's obviously the night sky... and it is. With a single pale dot. You can see it if you look closely. It's roughly halfway down the ray of sunlight on the right.
It's not much. In our era of 10 megapixel cameras the dot is tiny. It's only 0.12 pixels, in fact.
And... that's us. That miniscule dot is planet Earth, seen from 3.7 billion miles (6 billion kilometers) away. Voyager 1 took the picture in 1990, looking backwards during its ongoing journey out of our solar system.
"From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not seem of any
particular interest. But for us, it's different. Consider again that
dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love,
everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who
ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering,
thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines,
every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and
destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in
love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer,
every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar,"
every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our
species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
"The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena... Our posturings, our
imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged
position in the universe, are challenged by this point of pale light.
Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our
obscurity – in all this vastness – there is no hint that help will come
from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.
"The Earth is the only world known, so far, to harbor life. There is
nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could
migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment,
the Earth is where we make our stand. It has been said that astronomy is
a humbling and character-building experience.
"There is perhaps no
better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant
image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to
deal more kindly with one another and to preserve and cherish the pale
blue dot, the only home we've ever known."
This blog is entirely for entertainment purposes. All posts about patients may be fictional, or be my experience, or were submitted by a reader, or any combination of the above. Factual statements may or may not be accurate.
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Cast of Characters:
Annie: My Phenomenal MA Mary: My Awesome Secretary Ed: The office fish Dr. Pissy: The guy I share an office with Mrs. Grumpy:My Boss (also the world's greatest school nurse) Frank, Craig, and Marie:The Grumpy Tribe Snowball & Mello: The Grumpy Dogs
Questions? Comments? Biting sarcasm? Write to: pagingdrgrumpy [at] gmail [dot] com
Note: I do not answer medical questions. If you are having a medical issue, see your own doctor. For all you know I'm really a Mongolian yak herder and have no medical training at all except in issues regarding the care and feeding of Mongolian yaks.