... the journal

The Guest
Refrigerator Door

Now we have some magnets from Bob, who is an internet-friend I've never met, but who sent this series...

rs-thin.jpg (16243 bytes)


0062507249.01.MZZZZZZZ.jpg (4762 bytes)

Becoming a Man:
Half a Life Story

Paul Monette

My Amazon wish list


Nothing--too busy

Pictures from our The England and Orkney trip are on my own Club Photo page.

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That's it for today!



6 November 2001

Well, this computer has a mind of its own. For one thing, it refuses to be disconnected from the Internet. When I shut down the modem and walk out of the room, I hear it dialing again. It will not be denied. I'm going to start calling it HARLIE (the name of the sentient computer in David Gerrold's novel of the same name--it's just too normal to name a computer with a personality HAL )

The other thing it decided to do was the delete the huge entry I made for today. WordPerfect did not crash, I don't remember closing down the file, but it's just...gone. So here I am at 4 a.m., trying to recreate all the fervor I had when I wrote the things, just after getting home from work.

What I was saying, before we were so rudely interrupted, was that I'm starting to remember what it was like to be overly committed. For so many years, I was involved in so many things that it seemed I was on the go 24 hours a day, trying to juggle several jobs at once. It worked quite well for me because I was so busy that people stopped asking me to do things. "You're so busy, I won't ask you," they'd say. It worked so well that years after I stopped doing all those things and pretty much did nothing, they would still say "you're so busy, I won't ask you." It was kind of nice!

But now it's all coming back to me. I worked 9 hours at my "temporary" job yesterday. Got there at 10:30 a.m. so I could spend some quiet time alone before the first patient arrived at 2 (and Dr. G arrived at 1:45), and didn't leave until 7:30. That's without a lunch break, I'll have you know. And then I came home, went straight to the computer and typed transcription until I finally collapsed at 11:30. I still didn't get the review for Forum written, which I hope to get to this afternoon (it's our morning day at the office, so I should be home by 2 p.m.)

I've been doing spirals around the financial stuff at work, but yesterday I actually started tackling it and to my great surprise, I was actually figuring some stuff out. The problem with this is that you need uninterrupted time to just sit and figure out what happens if you do "this" or "that." I had a couple of a-ha! moments yesterday where I actually seemed to know what I was doing.

Trying to do that with telephones ringing, the doctor throwing work at you, and patients needing assistance is pretty impossible. Whenever you're interrupted (at least in this stage of my learning), it's almost like going back to square one to figure out where you were.

Of course I've still barely scratched the surface, but when when I left last night, I did feel I'd made some headway, for the first time since I took this job.

The one thing that was blatantly clear, though, was that I desperately need a computer to keep it all straight. There are several different accounts and expenses go in several different categories, and I don't even have a calculator that will run a printed tape that you can double check for errors. I'm just working with a cheap calculator with only an LCD screen.

So I finally went to Dr. G last night and asked him how he would feel if I brought in my laptop computer. I pointed out that it's my laptop and I use it when I'm not home, so I wasn't sure how he'd feel having his financial records carted around the country (though, of course, now that I have a job, I'll be doing less traveling).

He seemed very pleased. In his previous office, the manager was quite computer literate and they were computerized. But when D set up this office, she was not computer literate and so they didn't worry about computers. Dr. G himself knows computer basics, but needs someone to do the actual set-up for him. So he's thrilled that I'm willing to do that until he can afford to buy his own computer.

So I'll load Quicken here, take the computer to the office on Saturday, and get started transferring all the information over to that. It will make my life so much easier.

I also pointed out to him that already, in just the short time I'd been there, I'd seen several instances where it would have been handy to have Internet access. He nodded enthusiastically.

Heh heh heh. No fool I!!!

There is a data port on the telephone and I will now have Internet access. Of course, we only have two lines, so I can't spend all day checking e-mail, but I can log on occasionally. (Probably shouldn't try to play Marbles, though—assuming the game ever gets back on line again).

We only had two patients today who needed physical exams, but I'm discovering that more and more I really enjoy that part of the job. I've even started to lose the "ick" factor in doing the clean up after an exam.

Our last patient of the day was a young (19 year old) college student who was extremely nervous and thus very giggily. I am good at making light of things, so I was joking with her about things like asking if she'd like an 8x10 glossy of some of the prints of her ultrasound exam and that sort of thing. I think it helped ease the tension a bit.

I also mentioned to Dr. G that I'd made a trip out to the old office to practice taking blood pressures and I think he was both surprised and pleased that I'd go out of my way to do that.

We seem to be hitting it off—at least so far.

One Year Ago:
Things I Know Very Little About

(No entries for Nov. 6 or 7 last year--
I was in Los Angeles for a Last Session celebration)

(Club Photo has started deleting
photo albums after 90 days,
so the photos which were once there,
have been removed now)

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Created 11/6/01 by Bev Sykes