Saturday, November 27, 2004

on the job hazard

Just when I thought I had built up immunity to every snotty vomitty little kid virus known to man, I pick up this sore throat and cough from work. Damn you, walking germ bags.

Thanksgiving on call wasn't so bad. I was explaining to my interns (possibly to make us all feel better) that being on call Thanksgiving is the second-best scenario, given that in the wild world of Q4 call, we would have had to be on call sometime over the four-day weekend anyway. But what being on call Thanksgiving buys you is:
  • Pity. The world's most useful bargaining tool.

  • A two and a half day weekend afterwards. There's something vitally important about having an uninterrupted stretch of time off. One little snippet here and one little snippet there is not nearly as restful.

  • Enough free food to choke a rhinocerous. Between the anonymously donated turkey and fixin's in the housestaff lounge, the ten-course buffet donated by the nursing managers in the PICU, the impressive spread donated by a family on the Oncology unit, and the own snacks that we brought from home to cheer ourselves up, we were eating all day and most of the way through the night. There's nothing like gnawing on a cold drumstick while sitting in the housestaff lounge in scrubs, commiserating with your friends about sundry woes and pretending not to hear our pagers going off.

So as noted, being on call Thanksgiving is the second-best scenario. But the first-best scenario is being on call the Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend. Because that way, not only do you get the two and a half day weekend, you get Thanksgiving itself off, and you get post-call day off on Monday. You can see I've thought long and hard about this. Because this is what residents do. We scour our schedules, comparing various scenarios and keeping a keen eye out for any perceived inequities or favoritism. We are sad people.

Speaking of sad people, I woke up this morning gingerly testing my sore throat with repeated exercised in swallowing ("Still hurts...let me try that again...still hurts") and mentally giving myself medical advice with regards to hydration and the like. I'm so floored with having two days off in a row that I don't even know what to do with myself. Christmas shopping? Go see a movie? Get a haircut? Call up my sisters for lunch? Likely I will be so paralyzed by choice that I will just end up procrastinating and doing nothing. I'm like "Waiting for Godot" over here.

Currently reading: Finished "Geisha, A Life" and have now moved on to "Salt." That's a book about...salt. No, seriously.

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