(Gentle readers, I present the following which is mostly written in Marine-speak. You have nothing to fear and yet, if you have a weak constitution or are easily upset I implore you to skip this article, perhaps using the time saved to peruse the latest Peanuts comic strip in the newspaper or anything else that […]

Pie Will Out

April 25, 2007 | Leave a Comment

I’m a Doctor, Not a Magician I get accused of being a cynic and a realist, especially by people who are themselves self-proclaimed idealists. Why it is wrong to be a realist or cynical is the topic for another day. But I do actually have an idealistic heart and one that would shame the pretensions […]

Who do You Think You Are? Dear Sir or Madame, I am exceedingly glad to be done with the rotation. I have been a resident for almost two years and that month was perhaps the worst experience of my medical career. You made what should have been a moderately unpleasant experience which is what we […]

Futility On the last day of her life, your mother went on a spending spree. I intubated her at around 9AM and for the rest of the day we threw money at her, successfully keeping her alive until about dinner-time when her liver cancer finally had enough, gave us the finger, and showed us who […]

Swing Low, Sweet Chariot Old Toby wiped the sweat from his eyes, looked into the fluorescent lights, wiped his eyes again, and turned back to his work. At his side his fellow Resident Duke hummed a quiet spiritual in time to the rhythm of his pen. “Sho’ is warm in dis’ heah ward, ain’t it […]


March 13, 2007 | Leave a Comment

(After two years, I am almost done with call and most of the abusive practices associated with it so you’ll forgive me if I revisit these topics. I have a certain warmth for them and now that I am drawing to the end, I can give you a well-informed opinion. If these topics bothers you […]

Shaman Healer of the Lame Caribou Clan (After years of research, French anthropologists have managed to translate the famous cave paintings of Lascaux. The full translation will appear in next month’s “Journal of Linguistic Anthropology” but I thought I’d publish a sneak preview. -PB) Me. Tharg. Shaman Healer of the Lame Caribou clan. Master of […]

Actual Evaluation by My Residents and Attendings (Just for old time’s sake I reviewed my Dean’s letter. Man, those were the days! -PB) OB/Gyn: Student is on time and does everything asked of him willingly and with good humor but seemed uninterested in assisting in any more vaginal deliveries than were required to pass the […]

Dawn of the Dead

November 24, 2006 | Leave a Comment

Loaves and Fishes The body of Mr. Dubois recedes into the shadows as the nurse turns down the lights. His family wants some time with him before he is taken wherever it is we take the bodies of those who finally exhaust our ability to reanimate them. Mr. Dubois did not go quickly or easily. […]

I’ve got Your Back It’s my wife. The pager displays our super-secret marital code for “Everything is all right. I just want to see how you are doing. Call me at home.” “Hey baby,” I say when my lovely wife picks up, “How’s everything going?” “I’ll be home in another hour. Sorry. Things are kind […]

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