I am not the biggest fan of going to hospitals. In fact, I have never been a fan of going anywhere where I bring the average age down in the waiting room. I have never quite figured out whether that is a good thing or a bad thing:-)
But here I am going through my annual physicals and already am in my seventh hour as they have taken me thru a battery of tests from the brain (yes, found it 🙂 ) all the way to the toes. But of course, to me it is another opportunity to make friends with doctors, nurses, staff and learn new things. Kept pestering the three of my most favorite doctors (okay the only three I get to see once a year) to teach me about endothelial membrane, beta thalassamia and such inconsequential stuff. Managed to even make recommendations for some resort properties to one of them. Had a detailed discussion with the CT Scanner guy on why Texas can never get out US – regardless of what the popular belief is. (he does not like Texas).. and such other non-medical stuff crowded the day. But there were some funny moments too.
In fact, there was this really cute doctor who was giving me a hearing test. I tried to convince her that she should fail me in the test – I needed an excuse at home why I never do what my wife tells me to. She politely told me that she can fix my hearing problems but not my listening problems 🙂 (I correctly guessed that she is married 🙂 )
But the cutest thing happened as I was waiting for her to call out my name for the test. A really old couple were struggling to fill up those stupid forms that you have to fill up seventeen times. If one more person had asked me what my birthday was, I would have yelled “How the hell should I know? I was too small. You are the doctors. You guys should have noted it down” 🙂 Anyways, this old couple was desperately trying to help each other with the questions but there were three things that was making it painful for them and hilarious for us.
First, he wanted to make a quick hash of it by claiming “No” to everything. So, he would loudly yell – “Skin Problem? No!”, “Allergies? No!”.
Second, every time he would say “No” – she would re read the question and come up with a different answer!!
Third, both were hard of hearing (this was the ENT after all)..
He: “Family History of heart disease”? NO
She: “Write Yes”.
He: “Why? Who had heart problems?”
She (indignantly): “Your dad. He died of heart stroke”
He started desperately scratching on the paper 🙂
He: “Any skin problem”? NO
She: “Write Yes. Previously but not now”
He (irritated): “What was wrong with my skin?”
She (calmly): ” You had skin cancer”
He (grudgingly): “I did? Oh! I did!”
He: “Have you ever had a street drug”? “What is a street drug”?
She (lowering voice): “That is marijuana, honey”.
He: “Oh! I am not telling them that”
She: “Just write No then”
He: “Do you smoke cigarettes”? NO
She: “Write Previously Used”
He: “But why?”
She: “Because you gave up smoking in 1969”.
He (muttering under his breath): “They do not need to know that far back”.
and it went on and on. Unfortunately, I was called in at that time. But before I stepped in thru the doctors’ door, I did walk up to them and told them that when I grow up to be as young as them, I want my wife and I to fill up a form like them together. And wished them good luck. He told me he was a Vietnam veteran and he was a gunner then. Again I wished him the best. I finally understood how he lost most of his hearing…