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Dirty Old Men, The Fort Lauderdale Edition

February 6th, 2012 · 32 Comments · Daily, Out on the Town, Stump Stirrings

My ortho guy (because I have an ortho guy) has office walls bedecked with signed jerseys. Marshall Faulk is on the wall. Wayne Gretzky is on the wall. Even Kris Humphries is on the wall. I might not recognize all of the names on the shadow-boxed jerseys, but I *am* pretty sure that none of them represent slightly overweight housewives in their 40s. (Oh, man. Did you see that? It was not my intention to get all crankypants in Sentence Five. I was going to wait until at LEAST Sentence Eleven.)

This morning I went to see the ortho guy so we could figure out if I still need the boot on my left foot. I signed in at 9:00. My appointment was at 9:15. I was taken back to an examination room at 9:45. The doctor came in at 10:08.

Doctor: So, what’s going on?

Me: Well, I want to mention just a few things before we figure out if I need the boot any longer. First, blah, blah, blah, my insurance won’t cover a bone density test because the code isn’t covered under the correct umbrella.

Doctor: That’s just silly. Blah, blah, blah, this code, this code, or this code.

Me: Excellent. And another thing, I had blood taken to check my Vitamin D levels, and I’m low, so I’m now taking 50,000 units once a week for a month, and then I’ll go to 2,000 units daily until I die. Parentheses I didn’t know if you cared about that or not End Parentheses. Suddenly, rickets isn’t as funny as it was in elementary school.

Doctor: Okay. Let’s get a look at the leg.

Me: Ouch. Quit it. Ouch. Quit it. Ouch. Quit it. And while you’re poking me, I was wondering how my right leg x-ray looked, because I’m starting to get that weird shooting pain over there, and I can’t figure out if it’s because I’m walking crooked with the boot or not.

Doctor: Let me go out and take a look at the x-ray.

At this point, the doctor left the room, closed the door behind him, and was immediately approached by a wild and crazy and loud-talking colleague.

Colleague: Hey! What are you doing the weekend of March 15th?

Doctor (who was supposedly checking my x-rays and checking my x-rays): I don’t know! Why?

Colleague: Because I’m scheduling a mid-life crisis! We’re going down to Fort Lauderdale! I don’t have anything planned yet. Right now we’re just trying to figure out if we’re taking the spouses or not.

Doctor (still checking my x-rays, I presume): Well, I can answer that for you! Not!!! HA HA HA HA!!!!

Colleague: I’m with you, Bro!

They continued to talk (and possibly high five and/or kiss) for nearly ten minutes. And I thought that was funny because at this point the doctor had spent no more than five minutes talking to me and ten minutes talking to and/or making out with his friend. (I really can’t blame him. I would have much rather been chatting it up with one of my friends than touching the leg of someone who had no intention of offering up some rad game tickets and/or an awesome shot at Spring Break infidelity.) I finished a chapter in my book just in time for him to walk back into the room.

Doctor: No fracture in the right leg. I’m concerned about your left knee, though. Keep wearing the boot for two more weeks, and I’m going to send you downstairs for an MRI. If there’s no fracture, we’ll talk about platelet injections in both your ankle and your knee. I’ll call you and schedule it after I look at the MRI.

He then started to leave the room.

Me: Oh! Wait. While we’re talking about scheduling, who do *I* call to schedule *MY* mid-life crisis?

(Yes! I said that! I rarely have such a short lag time between Leaving the Scene and What I Should Have Said, so I went with it!)

Doctor (appearing a bit embarrassed): Ha! Erm. Yeah! Go ahead and schedule that. I hear Europe is nice this time of year!

Me: Actually, I hear DITCHING the SPOUSE and heading to FORT LAUDERDALE is also pretty tempting! Am I RIGHT?!

Doctor: Nervous laughter. Nervous, nervous laughter. I’ll take a look at the MRI and will call you in a few days.

I left the office feeling Parker Poseyesque plus a little humiliated plus a little rushed, because I had less than an hour to grab a Vanity Fair before my MRI.

The Parker Poseyness has worn off. I’m still feeling slightly humiliated (I’m not sure why), but that’s nothing that bean tostadas can’t fix. Also, I mostly recommend the latest Vanity Fair.

Happy Waitangi Day to my friends in New Zealand.


32 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Meghan // Feb 6, 2012 at 4:47 pm

    The next time I make it down to St. Louis, I owe you a chai latte. Or something. Because that was the most perfect & brilliant thing to say. (I always *think* of awesome things like that to say, but have never, ever, said them out loud. Or out loud while the other person is still close enough to actually hear me say it.)

  • 2 Melissa // Feb 6, 2012 at 5:36 pm

    I love that you said that to him. He needs to know what he sounded like to his clients. As well, I was so hoping you would say something about having to wait so long before being seen. He could have at the very least explained it to you. Maybe time for a new ortho?

  • 3 Peachy Girl // Feb 6, 2012 at 6:12 pm

    You are now my hero! (Hope all is well w/ the MRI.)

  • 4 Amy in StL // Feb 6, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    Ugh, I hate when doctors/medical office staff have loud personal conversations – it’s even worse when they’re gossiping about some other client. I’ve almost quit my gyno twice because her office staff does that; but I really heart her.

  • 5 Jenn // Feb 6, 2012 at 6:46 pm

    That was fantastic!

  • 6 Louise // Feb 6, 2012 at 7:40 pm

    I am most impressed! If I ever came up with something that witty it would be on the drive home. Or the following day. Good luck with the MRI.

  • 7 Janeaswell // Feb 6, 2012 at 7:49 pm

    Ha. Nice one. I asked a genuinely curious question at an ultrasound/x ray place the other day, to wit, what do poor people do when their kid needs a kidney ultrasound? Gap was >$100, the service exists in this region only in a private practice, and I know it is not covered by private insurance. I also came home with the slightly embarrassed feeling. It’s what happens when you disrupt the status quo I suppose. In my case I think I might use the discomfort to work up to writing a piece on this aspect of Australian healthcare…what was it that you mentioned? Tostada therapy? Might be needing some.

  • 8 carrie // Feb 6, 2012 at 8:43 pm

    I was really, really hoping that you would call out the ortho guy on his jackassery. And you did!


  • 9 marianne // Feb 6, 2012 at 10:10 pm

    How perfect that was! Funny and not challenging in a harsh way, but a “dude, I could hear *everything* you were saying with your boy out in the hall and now I’m not sure that you’re not 2 stunted creeps who like to go scope out college girls during spring break and I know you’re totally charging me a ton of money for the 7 total minutes that you spent with me (but which required that I spend 90 minutes waiting for you) so that you can afford this. Maybe your wife would like to join my knitting circle?”

    Brilliant. Enjoy, these moments come along so rarely.

  • 10 Jen // Feb 6, 2012 at 10:43 pm

    That was awesome!!! At least they weren’t violating any HIPPA laws, unlike the person that commented about her gyno’s office staff. Also, and I don’t know why this is, but ortho docs, hands down, seem to be the one specialty area who is known for their untimeliness regarding appointments. (Is untimeliness a word? Probably not…but it is now!)

  • 11 Gina // Feb 6, 2012 at 11:26 pm

    Major high five on that one. And no regrets! I always feel like stealing cottonballs and those tongue sticks, or at least some gauze, when they make you wait that long. But no, I don’t.
    Hope all goes well!

  • 12 Mitzi // Feb 6, 2012 at 11:27 pm

    I’ve heard of some ortho docs as being regarded as a little on the ….dumbass side of the surgeon food chain. (if that makes any sense)

    I’m just wondering if this Dr.’s name started with an M?

    If you’re not happy, there are plenty of ortho docs in the St. Louis area to choose from or get a second opinion from.

  • 13 yama ernastine // Feb 6, 2012 at 11:29 pm

    Love it! Love it! I’m going to use a broad brush and say that most Ortho’s are jerkity jerks. And the use of both “Not” and “Bro” totally support my generalization.

  • 14 Pam // Feb 6, 2012 at 11:53 pm

    Aw shucks – and thank you for the unexpected Waitangi Day good wishes.

    All power to you! I’m reminded of Wilde and Whistler…

  • 15 CrazyMomTats! // Feb 7, 2012 at 9:38 am

    Once I was referred to a specialist who left me sitting in his examining room for two hours. His personal office was right next door, and I could hear him on the phone talking to contractors who were renovating his home, giving out his phone numbers, and then talking to his bro’s. When he finally came in to see me, I reamed him out, saying that MY time was valuable too, then recited to him what he’d been talking about on the phone. I also told him his home phone number. His staff told me he didn’t make people wait that way anymore.

  • 16 Ami // Feb 7, 2012 at 9:58 am

    You go girl! And don’t feel humiliated. Feel good that you let him know in no uncertain terms he was being disrespectful to you (and also being a jerk in general). You’ll get more credit from him b/c you did it in a way that a man generally relates to: using humor. I bet you made a bigger impact on him than you realize.

  • 17 Clair // Feb 7, 2012 at 11:02 am

    Don’t feel humiliated, that was an amazingly awesome exit. I would personally follow it up with a call to the office manager explaining in great detail why I’m changing doctors, but I’m picky like that.

    Hope your knee/ankle, etc. is all OK. You’re getting a second opinion, right? Platelet injections sound like something that shouldn’t be taken lightly.

  • 18 Shmoo // Feb 7, 2012 at 11:29 am

    While I applaud your snappy comeback (I too suffer from delayed perfect response disease), I have to point out that its not wise to snap back at a guy that will be injecting stuff into you or slicing you up with a scalpel later on in life… just saying… I’d be shopping for a new ortho. If you were in Maryland I have just the guy… and his buddy runs physical therapy and is yummalicious.

  • 19 Jessica // Feb 7, 2012 at 12:22 pm

    I never comment but I just had to come out of years of hiding to say I’m proud of you! I hope all is well with your knee/ankle/leg. Happy healing!

  • 20 Fabs // Feb 7, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    That was EPIC! thanks for putting a big smile on my face and making me laugh!!!

  • 21 elsiroomom // Feb 7, 2012 at 1:22 pm

    That was OUTSTANDING!! You have fulfilled the dreams of many, my friend – those who WISH they had said exactly that sort of thing (or worse yet, have thought of it far too late to actually say it, even if they’d have had the courage to do so, in the moment). There ought to be some sort of award or badge for such bravery. Living the dream, I say!
    I hope your legs feel better soon.

  • 22 Leslie // Feb 7, 2012 at 11:25 pm

    That was awesome! I frequently play out the what I *would* have said scenario. (Oh, the me I am in my mind!) How exhilarating to actually say it! Or to read about someone really saying it! I’m feeling the urge to do a fist pump right now, so you know what? I’m just going to. Go Pudding!

  • 23 snozma // Feb 8, 2012 at 12:02 am


    I needed a motto for 2012 and now I have one.

    It is: “There is very little that bean tostadas can’t fix.”

    But perhaps I should make it: “Avoiding the misfortunes that bean tostadas can’t fix.”

    Because bean tostadas can’t fix EVERYTHING. But they fix almost everything.


  • 24 S // Feb 9, 2012 at 12:23 pm

    You are my new favorite.

  • 25 Effie // Feb 9, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    wow–I’m impressed that you said it OUT LOUD! I have often thought such things, but have yet to utter them directly to the individual…kudos to you!

    Can I have a bean tostada? :)

  • 26 Jenn R. // Feb 9, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    So excellent! Good on you.

  • 27 trinity67 // Feb 9, 2012 at 2:17 pm

    You. Are. Awesome.

  • 28 Elizabeth // Feb 9, 2012 at 2:47 pm

    You’re my hero! I would probably feel a smidgen humiliated too, because even a confrontation as mild as that is outside my comfort zone, and I have weird issues around challenging male authority. It’s a load of crap. Bully for you!

  • 29 kristin // Feb 10, 2012 at 1:20 am

    My ortho’s name is Dr. Green. Dr. Mark Green. Unfortunately, he looks nothing like ER-era Anthony Edwards, but he DOES look like Mark from Perfect Strangers (Balki’s cousin, of course). I always want to either a) call him Goose or b) do the Dance of Joy when I’m around him.

  • 30 Alli // Feb 11, 2012 at 12:40 pm

    That is awesome! The radiologist who read my mammo and ultrasound had a full length conversation about partying Friday night in Hoboken in the hall while I waited! When he walked in the room to give me the fate of my left boob I said what are you..like 22? (getting old makes me bitter) Good for you letting him know you are important and deserve his time and consideration.

  • 31 Tessa // Feb 17, 2012 at 12:52 am

    I. LOVE. YOU. So awesome.

  • 32 Charlene // Mar 4, 2012 at 10:21 pm

    WOW – those are the kinds of comments I always think up after the situation has passed! My best friends wife is a lawyer and we were out to dinner in Chicago with them, the ladies excused themselves to the restroom, and these two ladies were talking about their latest plastic surgeries. One about her nose job, and the other about her new boobs, they were SO loud – everyone could hear, them probably outside as well. Long story short, the nosejob gal was beggin from compliments on her nose job, so my friend Nichol, gives her her business card personal atty and says, trust me sweetheart y-ou NEED to call me – it was HILAROUS!!!!