Thursday, October 9, 2008

Julia presents a landmark case of PMS

We here at IDDx are always looking for ways to improve the quality of our content (see: Beef Stew). A few months ago we experimented with guest authors by publishing an article written by the now infamous Jess. However, the reviews were less than favorable, featuring comments such as “Oh god my eyes,” “I think I just threw up a little in my mouth” and the much feared: “You’ll be hearing from my lawyer.” One drawn out mental anguish lawsuit later, we have decided to venture into the realm of guest authorship once again, this time with a new, less Jess-y, author. Enjoy

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Okay, so PMS in the general population may not be that remarkable, but when a landmark case - such as I am about to relate to you - is encountered… well, is there not an intellectual duty to report it?

I was in the hospital cafeteria trying to grab some lunch in the small window of time between my visit to the gym and class. I grab some veggie burrito and head over to the cashier. I get into a line behind a woman who is already checking out and thank my lucky stars that I managed to avoid what is normally a long line and crush of people at lunchtime. Things are working out today. Huzzah!

Wrong.

While this woman is seemingly gathering up her plate and soda, the cashier has already rung me up. As I am handing over my cash, this woman turns and tries to walk through me, presumably to get a napkin or utensil or something. Instead of then going AROUND me the way a normal person might, suddenly I hear her bark at me “Uh, could you not put your dirty hand over my food?!” I am so shocked by this I simply say sorry, take my change and go.

Come to think of it, I don’t even think my hand WAS over her food. Perhaps it was in the airspace adjacent to the plate in question. But, to be fair, there is no way to prove that the microbes on my hand WEREN’T propelling themselves into the air and free diving into her mashed potatoes, so we can probably overlook this. Aren’t we always hearing about what a problem iatrogenic infections are around hospitals?

So I walk out of the cafeteria, prized burrito in hand, and begin to head back to class. However, I quickly realized that someone was on my heels, tailgating me. I turn my head to look over my shoulder et voila! It is the nasty lady herself. Is she done with me yet? Oh no, dear reader, she still has a little something snotty left.

“Oh great and why don’t you get your hair everywhere too?”

Excuse me? Now, what we had here was a definite pot-and-kettle situation. I have long curly hair that I was wearing down at that moment. However, she ALSO had long, dark curly hair that was down.

Think, Julia, think! “Um, could you try and not ruin my day as well?” Ok, not the wittiest thing I could probably have come back with, but honestly I was so shocked by this behavior coming from a total stranger… I mean REALLY.

Well at this point she just ignored my existence and stalked back towards her office. Touche, cranky-professional woman. Until we meet again... one month from now.

15 comments:

K said...

Did you hear back from JAMA.

Jesse said...

I heard they were bumping this case study for some crap about beef stew.

K said...

Oh really, I didnt know they allowed dual publications in JAMA and NEJM.

Anonymous said...

Same thing happened to me except the lady's food was in a brown paper bag(burger king). I was reaching over for napkins when she snapped. I let it go, I figured it was the PMS talking. Now that I think about it I shud of put ketchup in her hair then ran with her food. Na not my style.

julia.cunningham07 said...

Haha, I've been getting a lot of great suggestions on how I could (should?) have reacted.

So far my favourite comes from a friend... let's call her "Beth" ;) who suggested that I should have "stared her down and crossed myself while muttering in Latin." Presumably this would have ended with one of us scurrying off.

If only *I* had thought of that... sigh.

M said...

You're a good person.*

I know that as a group, we're supposed to be calm pacifists with high bullshit threshholds-- I mean, come on, we'll be working in hospitals one day, for crap's sake. It's pretty much an admission requirement.

Heh. Were I in your shoes, I'd have flipped the switch, PMS or no. I avoid confrontation when it's just illogical to get into (lose the battle, win the war, etc) but that cow's attitude was uncalled for. Was she larger than you? (Yeah, I'm a real lady.)

* Can not be used in a court of law.

D said...

Is this an allegory about med school?

Anonymous said...

Dang. I think I would have thrown her food across the room and said "fetch". Of course, I'm not a med student.

chuckr44 said...

I would have said: "Don't let the voices tell you what to do!"

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