Being a man, I have lots of very direct opinions. I’m not ashamed of this fact, and refuse to let my wife, daughter and family keep me from airing them. Often in public places, at high volume. I consider it a highly respected public service, plus, it gives me lots of laughs. Nothing says “public service” quite like announcing that your wife needs to shave her legs in the middle of Wal-mart, just to make sure she fits in with the rest of the crowd.
However, one of my very direct opinions concerns doctors. I tend to think they all
go quack quack as they fly south for the winter do their best to practice the art of medicine, just for you. Sorry, but I tend to be a tad suspicious of someone who is surrounded by drugs on a daily basis. All those samples they keep in that special room? Yeah, I just bet they hit that up regularly.
It just seems to me that we all know our bodies better than any doctor. Sure, he may know Latin names of things, but when it comes to something not working right, we are the experts of our own bodies. It can be disappointing to go to the doctor for a problem and have them throw pills at you, not even trying to solve the issue. We may not know what Lateral Epicondylitis is, but we know what Tennis Elbow is, and that it hurts.
But doctors are highly educated people, and once in a while, well.. let’s just say they know what they are talking about. In fact, in one particular case, I think my
evil psychopathic skin doctor Dermatologist, hit the nail on the head.
I have several skin issues. The biggest one is the skin disease called Eczema. The second one is something I can’t remember the name for, but it is a rare disorder particular to those of American Indian descent. But that isn’t the point, this is all about Eczema.
If you aren’t familiar with Eczema, it’s
a evil product of Satan a disease that causes rashes, itching, swelling and cracking of the skin. It’s about as much fun as having wild Capuchin monkeys running around amuck in your house. There are blisters, ungodly itching, and bleeding from the cracks in your skin. Not to mention leaving blotches all over, making you look like you fell in a bucket of beet juice. Yes, beet juice. That stuff is hard to clean up, yo.
Eczema can be brought on by stress, diet, chemicals, dyes, certain types of fabrics, soaps, among other things. In other words, I should be living in a bubble and be rich enough not to have a care in the world. In my case, most of my troubles come from the chemicals I work with on a daily basis, bringing home the bacon so my wife can give it all the neighborhood cats. But I digress.
One of the things I did learn, however, is that dyes are a big fat no-no. I discovered this after getting one of those fake tattoos at the beach.
Don’t judge my inner child. He bites and isn’t potty trained.
Before they started using Henna ink, they used an ink that is used in hair dye. It just so happens that for Eczema sufferers, like me, this dye is worse than an atomic bomb. Long after the ink had faded, I had ¼” welts on my skin in the exact shape of the tattoo. Despite several expensive rounds of pills, I still had those welts after 6 months. It looked like I had branded a dragon on my arm. That got me some weird looks, let me tell you. It was so startling, that when I first went to see my Dermatologist, she took one look and yelled for a camera. No doubt so she and the other doctors in the practice could snicker behind my back. Cretins, one and all. She did happen to lecture me, quite sternly (a particular type of Olympic Event only practiced by Doctors) about dyes. I can’t even use dye to cover up the gray in my hair and that is a bummer. Gray hair doesn’t make me look distinguished, it makes me look old.
Anyway, it’s been years now, and I usually only break out when I get exposed to certain types of chemicals at work. So I started getting jealous of my wife and daughter and contemplated getting a tattoo. Despite what my wife will tell you, I do happen to have an IQ higher than 50, so I decided to seek profession advice from my Dermatologist.
So I called. I talked to her nurse. I explained. With hope in my voice. She took down the information and promised to consult with the doctor and call back at the end of the day.
It wasn’t a half hour later that my phone rang. Who was it? My Dermatologist’s Nurse. It went down like this.
(Special Nifty iPhone Ring) Me: Hello?
Nurse: Mr. Riley? This is Nurse %*$! from Doctor’s %&##$!’s office. I talked to her and explained that you wanted to get a tattoo. She looked at your file and under no circumstances should you try to get a tattoo. The results would be unpredictable, and frankly, we aren’t sure how bad a break out you would have from it ok?
(Sudden noise of phone fumbling) Mr. Riley, this is Doctor $%!!!** and I just wanted to tell you that you must have lost your ever loving mind. Don’t you remember the fake tattoo? Are you nuts or something? I don’t think you are in your right mind for even considering this and let me tell you – yadda, yadda, yadda.
She went on for quite a bit. I’m sure she had lots of evil fun telling me off, and have no doubt she was hovering by the nurse just so she could talk mean to me. I'm sure she will win Gold in the Doctor's Special Olympics.
However, at the end of her rant, she said the words, “But it’s up to you”. I quite distinctly heard in that tone “if you’re some kind of brain dead idiot”.
Ok, maybe the conversation didn’t go quite like that, but it was close.
Needless to say, she dashed my hopes. I had to swallow sadness.
So, to summarize, according to my Doctor, no tattoo for you. It reminds me of the soup nazi from Seinfeld. All that was missing was the accent.
Sometimes it’s no fun being “special” as my mother likes to say about me, but I always thought she meant that in a more derogatory way.
Ah well. I guess I’ll have to find some other way of expressing my uniqueness. As a finishing note, my Dermatologist looks nothing like the Doctor pictured above. If she did, I would have weekly appointments.