I see a lot of doctors; my primary care and a few specialists, like a pulmonologist. Sometimes, she orders chest x-rays because I was once a smoker and I’m prone to lung problems. (It will be 10 years in October!) Generally, I go to Boston Diagnostics in Altamonte Springs because they’re handy and efficient. I’ve had other tests done there, too, with and without contrast. I recommend the place, except for the few tests I’d rather not have because there are different ways to get that chalky white contrast inside you.
Many years ago, before I had insurance, I went for some sort of “procedure.” Maybe gloves were involved. I don’t remember what it was, but I do recall that I had to stop at the side desk for billing before walking out the locked door and back into the waiting area to leave. I’m certain I had to sign something. When I went to that open window to settle up, I noticed signs hanging on the walls behind her, clearly for customers to see. You know, like the $30 fee for bouncing a check. One sign in particular caught my eye and it got my creative juices flowing. It must have been a lull time, too, because several nurses were standing around chatting. They seemed to be enjoying themselves. Not mine. I ended up with one of those stern, robotic, almost Gestapo-types sitting there at her neatly organized desk. You vill obey! As she typed into her computer, I paid attention to that one sign…
I think it meant no Doppler ultrasound studies on the carotid arteries. Suddenly, out of the blue, I piped in, purposely bypassing Frau Ratched. Pronouncing carotids like the vegetable, I pointed at the sign and asked, “No CARROTids? Do you have TOMATIDS?”
All of the other nurses paused for a split second, then burst into laughter. But not mine. She had to correct me. Like I was an idiot. Fortunately, one of the other nurses let her know it was an obvious joke. Can’t you tell? Unfortunately, she didn’t get it at all. Without a doubt, she wasn’t right for that job and, fortunately, I never saw her again.