They Need New Glasses As Well As Their Drugs

, , , , , | Healthy | July 5, 2018

(I pull into a drive-thru pharmacy to pick up my prescription, and there’s just one car in front of me. It’s ten full minutes before the car in front of me drives off and I can pull up to the window, but I’m not in a hurry, so I don’t really mind.)

Me: “I’m picking up a prescription for [My Last Name].”

Pharmacist: “Okay, let me just pull that up.”

(She’s gone for a few minutes, and I’m starting to think that this is why the line was slow. Obviously, I think, they must have new people there who don’t know what they’re doing. When she comes back:)

Pharmacist: “I’m sorry, but I don’t have any filled prescriptions listed under your name.”

Me: “But I got an email saying my prescription was ready.”

Pharmacist: “I don’t know what to say. We have you in our system from about two years ago, but there’s nothing recent.”

Me: “Can you check again? I got the email, so I know it’s ready.”

(The pharmacist is gone even longer this time, and I’m starting to feel pretty righteously indignant.)

Pharmacist: “No, we don’t have anything ready for you.”

Me: “Look, that just doesn’t make sense. I don’t understand how I can have an email from Walgreens right here saying that my prescription is ready, but you guys apparently don’t have it.”

Pharmacist: *blank stare* “Ma’am, this is CVS.”

(I felt like such a complete moron that I just drove away in embarrassment. Pharmacist, if you’re out there, I’m really sorry I didn’t apologize!)

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You Can’t Snake Your Way Into Heaven

, , , , | Healthy | July 4, 2018

(A very distraught-looking woman rushes into our emergency vet clinic with a garter snake in a shoebox. It would seem that she accidentally ran it over with her car while backing out of the driveway. The snake was horrifically mangled, but is still somehow unfortunately alive. It becomes instantly clear that it’s not going to make it.)

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but unfortunately I don’t think we can do anything to help this snake. At the very least, we can put him to sleep so at least he doesn’t have to suffer anymore.”

Woman: “I understand.”

(She looks very upset and begins crying.)

Me: “Just think of it this way. He’ll be chasing mice in Snake Heaven.”

Woman: “But snakes don’t go to Heaven! He’ll be partying down in Hell with the Devil!”

(She then walked out of the clinic, still crying, leaving me with the dying snake in the shoebox. I wish I could say that was the weirdest response that I’ve ever received when trying to comfort someone, but it’s not even close.)

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Drink This, Then The Pneumonia Won’t Seem So Bad

, , , , | Healthy | July 3, 2018

(I am nine years old. I have a pretty weak constitution and frequently fall ill. Every winter, like clockwork, I’ll get pneumonia, among other illnesses. I learn to recognize and become familiar with the sensation of my lungs feeling full of lead, and sharp, stabbing pain overtaking my ribcage on every inhale. I can’t breathe in enough oxygen to get out of bed. My parents choose their own methods of medical treatment for me. I’ve been bed-bound for days with pneumonia; I’ve got a high fever and am struggling to breathe. My parents have been bringing me occasional water and soup, and some seemingly random, unnamed medicines. Mom comes in, sits on the bed, and hands me a cup of medicine.)

Mom: “You need to drink this.”

(I take a sip. It’s horrifically bitter. I gag, cough, and hand it back.)

Me: “I… can’t… It’s… bitter… and gross!”

Mom: “You have to drink it, anyway; it’s medicine! You need to drink your medicine!”

Me: *panting* “I… can’t! There’s… no… way… I can… drink… that! It’s… undrinkable! It… tastes… like… poison!”

Mom: “Well, if you want to whine about it, fine.” *offhandedly* “Just know that since you’re severely ill, this is the only medicine that will save your life! If you won’t drink it, you’re going to die!

Me: “…” *shock*

Mom: *matter-of-factly* “Yes, you are! You are so horrifically sick that you’ll die if you don’t drink all of this! Probably very quickly! Tonight, in fact! But I guess you don’t want it, so I’m just going to take this away now! I’m leaving with the medicine now, since you’re choosing to die!”

(She pauses.)

Mom: “Now. Are you suuuuuure you don’t want it?!” *wiggles the cup in front of me*

Me: *horrified fear*

(Of course, I reluctantly took the medicine back and choked it down miserably, while gagging and struggling not to throw up or expel my lungs. They continued “treating” me this way for years for every serious illness. Looking back, I think it’s likely it was some “medicinal” Russian tea, or maybe some over-the-counter unflavored children’s fever reducer like acetaminophen or Aspirin, and I really wouldn’t be surprised if they chose an unflavored version to save money. Some of the other “folk remedies” my parents inflicted on me to “treat” pneumonia were much more disturbing and gross. For some reason, they seemed to just treat these illnesses like regular colds. They never once took me to a doctor or hospital, no matter how bad it got or how high my fever, despite living in a country with free social healthcare, and otherwise regularly taking me to a doctor for check-ups and vaccines.)

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Tells Dad Jokes Religiously

, , , , , , | Healthy | July 2, 2018

(My dad is chronically unserious, even when he really ought not to be. He and my mother are in the intake of an ER, as he’s managed to injure himself somehow, and a nurse is doing the standard intake questions.)

Nurse: “Religion?”

Dad: “Orthodox Agnostic!”

(The nurse starts to write it down, then pauses and just looks confused.)

Mom: *exasperatedly* “None.”

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Needs A Follow-Up Follow-Up Sign

, , , , , | Healthy | July 2, 2018

(I work in the back office of a large multi-specialty practice. Patients routinely come out of the rooms after their appointments and need to make follow-up appointments, which they are supposed to do with the schedulers at the front desk where they checked in; the doctors tell them so. However, they usually make a beeline for where I sit at the nurses’ station and request that I schedule their follow-up. After a few months of directing patients to the front desk, I made a bold-face, full-page sign that sits upright on the counter between my desk and the patients saying, “Follow-up appointments can be made at the Front Desk,” with a bright orange arrow directing to the front. However, this still happens several times a week:)

Patient: *standing directly in front of the sign and craning their neck around it to see me* “I need a follow-up appointment for six months.”

Me: *mental head-desk* “Let me just show you to the front…”

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