... the journal

The Guest
Refrigerator Door

These aren't exactly magnets, but they were off of a wonderful wall at my friend diane's house in England.

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* Discussion *

Talk about it here.


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Becoming a Man:
Half a Life Story

Paul Monette


The last Giants-Mariners game

Samples of two of the
slide shows I've been making
can be downloaded from
this ZDNet page

and four more are posted at Beechbrook Cottage

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

Not to be missed:  Steve has uploaded some of his new songs to the web.  Check 'em out

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That's it for today!



23 October 2001

As of 5 p.m. this evening, my period of slackerhood has come to an end. I am now a working woman.

Well, not working very hard at the moment. I had an hour of orientation this evening, will have another tomorrow, then off Wednesday and 3 hours on Thursday. Fridays the office is closed. I might go in Wednesday night to sit in on one of the free seminars, just to get a feel for what this guy does (still don't know if he is "Dr. Goodman" or "Mike").

If you want to get a feel for where I'll be working, check it out:


When I actually get to working, I'll take a camera with me and give a photo tour of the place. I can probably do that without getting up from my desk. The place is teeny.

You walk in the front door into the reception area and the first thing you notice is that it feels more like someone's living room than a doctor's waiting room. There is a nice plush couch, some "coffee table books," a coffee pot, a nice assortment of teas, and fresh flowers (he brings flowers in on Monday and they last until Wednesday, he says).

At the other end of that small room is my desk and the very first thing I noticed is that it has no computer. It took a little hunting, but I did find what looks like a portable typewriter (in a case, so I didn't open it). I don't know if it's manual (oh horror!) or electric. I suspect the person in this position doesn't have much need of a keyboard anyway.

The office also includes a small room (more like a large closet) which contains medication samples, a refrigerator, and a sterilizer. Sort of an all purpose room.

There's a bathroom.

And there's his office, which has a folding screen at one end of it, behind which is the exam table. That's about it! There is no cleaning service, so part of my job is cleaning (stop that snickering, all of you). This is a 2-person operation and between us we do everything. He takes the exam gowns (which are cloth) home with him to wash.

I dust.

I may have to take lessons in how to do that.

It is apparent from the getgo that I'm going to be learning a lot of new skills. First there is the dreaded accounting. Not only are the accounts in a mess from the last person in this position, but he wants to wean off of the accounting service and have me do it all. Hopefully not this week, please. (My consolation is that he's so upset about what hasn't been getting done by my predecessor that I figure if I can improve on her performance, I'll be in like Flynn and that should give me some breathing time to learn the bones of the job).

But in addition to the accounting, there is also "back office work." In the Medical Biz, that means working with and for the patients and with the doctor. He will teach me how to take blood pressures. I will be setting up the exam table with clean paper, gowns, etc. I will help him do Pap smears (he does the smear, I hold the container into which it goes). I will attend exams, since male doctors have to have a "chaperon" when they do female exams.

speculum.jpg (3608 bytes)The biggie in the "ick" factor is that I will be cleaning and sterilizing speculums. For those gentlemen who aren't sure what that is, it's the metal thing they use to hold the appropriate orifice open so they can check on all your interior parts. It's not really an "ick factor," since when he finishes an exam, he drops it in some sort of milky looking solution. What happens at the end of the day when it goes from solution to sterilizer, I don't know yet.

We discussed "office attire," and I made a mental note that my current wardrobe, with very few exceptions, doesn't meet the requirement, so I may have to head off to the nearest Omar the Tentmaker outlet to get some "casual but professional" looking clothes. I haven't figured out if my clunky shoes will cut it in the "professional atmosphere" department.

We had a nice chat this evening and tomorrow we get into more of the guts of the job (so to speak). But he seems an affable guy and I figure that if I can adhere to the way he does things, we'll get along fine. I suspect that "improvisation" is not going to be encouraged here, at least not until we have a real working relationship.

But anyway, along with SecraTerri, my period of unemployment has come to an end, and I'm going to have to turn in that "slacker" button that someone gave me a couple of years ago.

One Year Ago:
I was OK until I got arrested

Some pictures from this journal
can be found at
Club Photo

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Created 10/22/01 by Bev Sykes