Phoney Services: The Movie
FADE IN GRAPHIC: PRESENT DAY, 9:37 AM.
FADE IN to reveal two plain, white walls. The wall on the right contains a window with blinds, drawn up, revealing a fence, trees and a grass lawn. The sky is blue and the sun shines. The sound of a lawn mower can be heard in the distance. Birds chirp. In front of the other wall is a computer desk and chair. A computer, Apple, is turned on and displaying the INTERNET.
In the chair in front of the computer sits a man, HERO. A small cell phone is in his hand and held to his ear. His other hand is holding a piece of paper, previously folded, which has now been opened up.
HERO LOOKS AT piece of paper.
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The Doctor Tom Show – An Important Announcement
I’m still feeling rather giddy about my recent achievement of a childhood dream. That of becoming a doctor*. You little people can now call me Dr. Taker or Dr. Tom (if you’re not on my shit list.) From now on I’ll be sporting a fashionable white lab/trench coat (and nothing else). Mmm. That feels good.
Today I finally end the
speculum speculation. (Sorry. I’m still new to being a doctor and some of these fancy words won’t come easy to me.)
My name is Tom B. Taker and I am running for president.
To prove how motivated I am, I made my own campaign mug with my very own hands. (See inset image.) The craftsmanship demonstrates my many talents. (It looks so good you can’t believe it wasn’t made in China. But it’s true. The American spirit remains alive.) The fact that I instagramed the bloody thing means I understand today’s technological world. Thus you can wisely conclude that I’m a true renaissance man. I hope you’ll agree I’m a lesser evil than those other no talent ass clowns and thus worthy of your vote!
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What if an indigenous peoples’ tribe behaved like our modern world?
“Hey there. How do you do? My name is John.”
“Pleased to meet you. I’m Tom.”
“Hi ho, Tommy Boy.”
“Actually, if you don’t mind, I prefer Tom.”
“Whatever you say, Tommy Boy.”
Need we hear much more to identify the asshole here? Fuck political correctness, what the hell do you call a person who won’t bend in the slightest to respect the feelings of another person?
“It’s a free country, pal! This political correctness is killing us. I can call you whatever I want. Ever hear of a little thing called Freedom of Speech? What are you going to do about it?”
“Sure. Ever hear of a little thing called You’re Puss-Filled Leaking Douchebag?”
So yeah. If I can, and it’s no skin off my nose, I’ll make a little extra effort to respect the wishes and feelings of others. That, in and of itself, makes me an utter alien on this planet. By now we all know how much I like to be different.
Thus begins a new meme here in the Abyss. I hope you will like it. I’m calling it: “What if an indigenous peoples’ tribe was like our modern world?”
I know. That’s a l-o-n-g name. And also, why the over-the-top political correctness here?
We all know it’s rude to refer to Native Americans as “Indians.” Hell, thanks to Freshly Pressed, I recently learned that someone from the actual country of India didn’t like the term, either.
I also dismissed the term “Native American” because that had specificity to the United States. I wanted it a little more generic than that. So we’re going to go with “Indigenous Peoples.”
I’m just trying to be respectful and word the question in the right way.
So let’s now try to answer that question: What if an indigenous peoples’ tribe was like our modern world?
We came across the tribe and saw something extraordinary. It was rather ordinary except for one man. This man was singled out for opulent riches. He was surrounded by women who fawned over him, fanning him as he relaxed, and occasionally feeding him pieces of fruit. He was adorned with more gold than anyone else in the village. But he wasn’t the Chief. He wasn’t an Elder. As far as we could tell, he wasn’t a leader or special in any obvious way.
We asked one of the people, “What is special about that rich man, there?”
“That’s our forecaster. He is, by far, the best guesser of the future prices of pork bellies. He’s amazingly accurate.”
We happened to overhear a conversation between a sick man and the village healer. The healer spoke.
“I see you have no health insurance. However, I will save your life. In return, you must promise to to bring to me everything you kill, gather or make for the next year.”
After several weeks of observation, we noticed one young man. He did not hunt. He did not gather. He did not make things. He apparently did absolutely nothing of value to the tribe.
And yet this man was highly respected by the men. And women wanted to have sex with him.
He did not work and people brought him all the food he could eat. They made clothes and things for him. They maintained his home. Everyone sacrificed so the man could prosper.
Then a day came where all the people of the village assembled. Some of the men went to the field while others watched. The popular young man was among them.
They began to play a game while the reminder of the tribe watched.
It turns out that the young man was the very best at hitting a little ball with a stick.
Can you think of any others?
This just in from the We Won’t Let This Die news desk…
I always knew that Nadya Suleman had undergone fertility treatments of some sort, but I never bothered to learn more. The “treatment” consisted of implantation of 12 embryos. The doctor who performed the procedure recently had his license revoked. A medical board in California found that he failed to terminate “excess fetuses*.”
The license revocation goes into effect on July 1st. I find that interesting. If he was “negligent” why not revoke it effective immediately? I guess that gives him the courtesy of performing a few more treatments for some very lucky mommies to be during his going out of business promotion. Act fast! This is a limited time offer.
Meanwhile, Octomom faces the foreclosure of her California home. Nadya has come up with a brilliant plan to raise the funds needed: Bikini car wash! She’ll charge $20 to $30 per wash, but SUVs may cost extra. The event will take place June 18th.
Sure, you’re saying, “Sign me up.” But wait, there’s more.
Other celebs will lend a hand to the sudsy fund raiser including reality has-been Tila Tequila and Capri Anderson, the porn-star friend of Charlie Sheen.
Nadya, facing eviction from her home, hopes to raise enough money to make a missed balloon payment of $450,000.
Personally I feel the bikini wash is far superior to the normal attire car wash. That’s the special kind of clean that your gasoline-power combustion engine vehicle really deserves.
* Shameless self-promotion: The Excess Fetuses is the name of my new rock band.
Quest for the quirky queen of Quackery
A little something from my Twitter timeline:
My wife is still not feeling well and saw a new doctor today who listened and asked questions. Is it sad as fuck that surprised us so much?
—April 13, 2011
I don’t care what your job is. Maybe you’re the kid who pumps the gas. (Historical reference.) Maybe the person on the other side of the counter at the fast food restaurant. Maybe even the President of the United States.
Maybe you’re a pathetic loser, like me, nothing more than a piece of gum on the bottom of the universe’s shoe.
Or maybe you are a doctor.
Whatever your job, and more importantly, whether you hate it or not, you should do your best. Hell, I find myself caring and trying to excel even as I wish I could melt out my eyeballs with a blowtorch. There’s something very very wrong with me in that I care about doing things right even while I hate what I’m doing. It’s a sickness, I think.
That’s probably why I’ve never been fired in my entire life. I know! But it’s true.
It’s no secret that I don’t think too much of doctors. I often bitch about doctors on my blog. In a previous post I called them Salubrious Basterds. (That post was yet another “challenge” post, namely Blog Improv. The day is coming soon, I think, where a post that isn’t part of any challenge will become the most trendy challenge of all!)
My beef with doctors is twofold. First, they still haven’t evolved too far beyond, “Hey, let’s break out the leeches. That should improve your humors. Fuck it, we don’t know what else to try.” There’s still so much we don’t know.
When the U.S.S. Enterprise went back in time (yeah, that narrows it down) Dr. McCoy gave an elderly woman at the hospital a pill and she grew a new kidney.
Alas, we’re not quite there yet.
My second beef is that, out of all the people I meet, doctors seem to be the least concerned about doing their job and doing a good job.
It works like this: You go to the doctor. You wait on them half an hour or more because they are way more important than you. You pay $100 for about three minutes of their time. During those three minutes the doctor won’t listen to you, glances at facts, leaps to conclusions, acts like being near you is akin to being covered in biting, crawling fire ants, scribbles out a prescription based on the latest visit from a pharmaceutical rep, and then flees the room as fast as humanly possible.
$33 a minute for that kind of “work” is fantastic when you can get it.
The last time I went to the emergency room, I was there about 15 minutes, got a shot of something called diloted (which was actually good shit), saw the doctor a total of three minutes, and got billed for $1,200. What a fucking racket.
My main point is, can’t they at least pretend to care? Do they have to act so rushed, like your mere presence is such an imposition on them? We’re paying good money.
My wife and I have been sick a lot so far this year with that damn lingering bug that has been going around. I went all John Wayne on it (perhaps Mike Rowe is the more suitable name these days?) and toughed it out by going to work and never seeing a doctor. I consider it my duty to work when sick and be a vector.
My wife, however, missed a record number of days and used up all her sick time. She went to the doctor a few times, too. And urgent care.
Her primary care physician wouldn’t give her the time of the day and prescribed prednisone, some sort of steroid. Why is it that doctors think steroids are God’s gift to medicine? Steroids must be the modern version of leeches. Then, when the prednisone didn’t work and caused other problems, the doctor stuck his fingers in his ears and went, “naw naw naw I can’t hear you.”
Meanwhile my wife is paying big money for the privilege of having this discussion with him over and over.
Finally, she figured out that if she made an appointment on his day off, she’d get to see someone else. Brilliant! And that’s when something unusual occurred. The person she saw actually listened. And didn’t act like my wife was frothing at the mouth with rabies and stayed in the room with her. And even asked questions! And, get this, said, “I see you went to an urgent care. You need to sign this form so we can get their records over here.”
What the hell?
The thing that really hit us was, of course, how bloody surprised we were to be treated well by a member of the medical profession. Wow. It’s truly sad just how staggering of a surprise it turned out to be. When doing a good job is so damn unusual perhaps there’s something wrong with the whole profession?
I often wonder, “What would life be like if a native American village ran like our modern society?” You’d go to see the medicine man and he’d say, “Yes. I can help you. But in return, I will require from you everything you hunt for the next 12 years. Sound like a good deal? If you don’t like it, you always got that other option. Just go die.”
Somehow I don’t think they ran things that way.
To close this section, I’d like to talk about a doctor who is not-so-affectionately known as The Dragon Lady or the The Black Widow behind her back. The woman is a Queen Biatch of Quackery in the highest degree. (In this context, “quackery” is just a general derogatory term based on her profession. I don’t know what her actual skills are.) She had her own practice but suddenly and mysteriously closed it down. Now she works in the field of insurance billing where she is hated. If you are a doctor she’ll treat you with a modicum of respect. Anyone else? Watch out. You are her minions and treated as such. A noble example of a noble profession. And, at least to me, she’s not that exceptional in her field. Just another doctor that doesn’t treat people right.
Big “Q” Bonus: Quetzalcoatl
If you’ve ever played Nethack (the greatest computer game of all time), then you already know that Quetzalcoatl is the lawful deity of the archeologist profession. He’s the guy you pray to when you are dying of hunger or about to die.
Quetzalcoatl was also a God to the Aztecs.
One of the principal Aztec-Toltec gods was the great and wise Quetzalcoatl, who was called Kukumatz in Guatemala, and Kukulcan in Yucatan. His image, the plumed serpent, is found on both the oldest and the most recent Indian edifices. … The legend tells how the Indian deity Quetzalcoatl came from the “Land of the Rising Sun”. He wore a long white robe and had a beard; he taught the people crafts and customs and laid down wise laws. He created an empire in which the ears of corn were as long as men are tall, and caused bolls of colored cotton to grow on cotton plants. But for some reason or other he had to leave his empire. … But all the legends of Quetzalcoatl unanimously agree that he promised to come again.
[ Gods, Graves, and Scholars, by C. W. Ceram ]
It is also interesting that Quetzalcoatl has a tie-in with Mormonism:
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints
Some Mormon scholars believe that Quetzalcoatl, as a white, bearded god who came from the sky and promised to return, was actually Jesus Christ. According to the Book of Mormon, Jesus visited the American natives after his resurrection. Latter-day Saint President John Taylor wrote:
“The story of the life of the Mexican divinity, Quetzalcoatl, closely resembles that of the Savior; so closely, indeed, that we can come to no other conclusion than that Quetzalcoatl and Christ are the same being. But the history of the former has been handed down to us through an impure Lamanitish source. “
TED: Ideas Worth Spreading
A song by Queen on a slightly different instrument…https://ted.com/talks/view/id/1063
This is my “Q” post for the April 2011 “A to Z Blogging Challenge.”