Tuesday, December 11, 2007

You May Not Know That You Think You Might Need This

Ryan just showed up in the chilly bedroom with a skull mug full of Good Earth tea with honey--exactly what I needed after one of the most frustrating days in recent history.

Some of you know already that every time I go to the doctor I seem to have some completely asinine conversation with someone who is apparently a "medical professional."

(And as an aside, the end of my day is now being made more joyous by someone's car alarm going off right outside my apartment for the last 15 or so minutes.)

Anyway, I've had a cold for nearly 3 weeks now and it's all stayed in my sinuses. Now, my sinuses and I are well acquainted so I know this is likely a sinus infection. I finally go in to the doctor today, arriving at 1:55 p.m. for my 2:10 p.m. appointment. My temperature is taken at 2:20, followed by my blood pressure and then....it's 3:05 p.m. and I am still in the front waiting room. So, me being me, I finally go hover in the nurses' station and ask when I'll be taken to a room. They ignore me for a minute and then finally:

Nurse #1: "Are you here to see Dr. S----?"

Me: Yes.

Nurse #2 (shakes head): Dr. S----.... oh... (sighs) she's so backed up; we don't have rooms.

Nurse #1: We don't have a room yet.

Me: You told me that 45 minutes ago.

Nurse #1: Let me check on Room #4.

Nurse #2 (to me): There are no rooms.

Me (in my head): What is this? A hotel?

Nurse #1: Follow me.

So, yay!... a room. And there I sit for another 30 minutes. I nearly walked out, but still feel poorly enough that I feel like a prisoner. Finally, the doctor shows up,
and barely utters an apology and asks me what's wrong with me. I suck down the vitriol I have in my throat and explain. I tell her I also have bad allergies so I wanted to be sure this was something else and not just my "normal" congestion. She looks up my nose and at my throat, "hmmmmm"s to herself and says "Well, you might have a bit of sinusitis. Or maybe not."


Me: "So, is it something other than just normal congestion?"

Her: Well, you say you have tenderness in your sinuses.... (trails off)

Me: Um, yeah. I've had what seems like a cold for 3 weeks.

Her: Oh, well, then, yes, it could be. But you know, it may clear up.

Me: So......?

Her: (types on computer)

Me: SO.... do I need antibiotics?

Her: Well, I will fill out a prescription, but maybe you should wait and see if it gets better.

Me: It's been 3 weeks. I feel out of it and lethargic and congested.

Her: Well, you know, we don't just like to prescribe antibiotics...

Me: I understand...

Her: You know, with that superbug (laughs).

Me: Excuse me? That's a staph infection, right, not sinusitis?

Her: Yes, but if you take too much penicilin...

Me: So are you telling me NOT to take this?

Her: Well, I will write the prescription and you can fill it if you need to.

Yes, it's all a wonder I did not throw myself out the window by this point. Let's tack on 40 extra minutes for going to the pharmacy, and then waiting for them to post my name on the LED board, which they never did, so 30 minutes after it should have been ready I finally braved the huge line and they say "Yes, of course, it's been ready for 20 minutes!"

I left the parking garage at 4:30 p.m., ready to punch anyone who possibly got in my way.

And now I have penicilin. And a fear of the superbug. And hatred for this doctor. And a headache.

Hence the tea that Ryan so sweetly set in front of me. Sometimes it only takes a skull mug to make it all better.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Who's Mortgage Is It, Anyway?

At the risk of sounding... oh, like a Republican (shudder), why is there such a sudden interest by Congress and the White House in helping out people who bought houses at inflated prices with bad credit who knew their mortgages would re-set?

Oh, right... not only is 2008 a Leap Year, it's Election Year.

The best part of all is that once you get past the lame AP headlines of "White House Announces Plan to Aid Those Ailing in the Ailing Housing Market" etc., you get nifty little nuggets like this:

"Bush said that 1.2 million people could be eligible for help under the plan, developed in negotiations with the mortgage industry led by Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson. But only a small fraction of that number will be subject to the rate freeze."

So this is helping the market how, exactly?

"Also, the aid will only come to those who ask for it, he said. Thousands of borrowers who are falling behind on their payments have been sent letters about the options, and Bush also urged people to call a new hot line: 1-888-995-HOPE."

I see. If I buy a house and know my mortgage is re-setting, then I send out the bat signal, I mean, call a hotline.

"Bush originally gave the wrong number for the hot line; the White House later corrected him."

My guess is Bush couldn't spell H-O-P-E or completely lacks understanding of what the word means, since nothing he's done the last 7 years inspires any in anyone.

In case it wasn't obvious, I am considerably cranky today.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Death to Friendster

I don't know why I didn't do this sooner, but I finally just deleted my Friendster account. Remember Friendster? It was Myspace before Myspace morphed into Facebook...or something like that. It hardly matters; you know what I mean.

I seem to remember being really excited when Friendster first appeared because it seemed so novel--the whole "connect with people online" thing that wasn't about trolling for sex (though you could have used Friendster for that, I suppose; I never got enough profile views for it to matter).

I labored over that profile--trying to make myself sound as eclectic and yet attractive to the general populace in the hopes that I'd somehow be validated by this computer-based socializing. There was a whole "Electric Dreams" element to it, really...as if the computer on which I was creating all of these cheeky, super-cute descriptions might accidentally fall in love with me. And then I'd totally spurn it, of course.

Looking back at my Friendster profile last night, I, too, was underwhelmed. No wonder I never saw any action as a result. "Is that me?" I wondered. Then I looked at Myspace and Facebook and saw a similar profile and wondered if I should just delete all of them... BUT, I like playing Scrabble with Tim and Blaise on Facebook, so I kept that. And Myspace had better pictures of me, so...

Or is the truth that I, too, no longer know how to be alone? (How's that for technologically induced existential angst?) There's something so validating about knowing someone's looking at you online and "interacting" with you and telling you how great you still look--which is a lovely by-product, I admit. And I do genuinely love quasi-reconnecting with folks to whom I may never send a postcard. But how far does that interaction go? I guess only my Scrabble win/lose record will tell me.