Friday, January 13, 2006
An American Fairytale
Disclaimer: If anyone should take offense to the following story, please remember that it is pure fiction. And I will avow that as long as necessary…
Once upon a time, there was a curly-headed blonde girl who ventured into the land of men. Not only did she choose a male-dominated career (medicine), and a particularly male-dominated specialty (orthopedics), but she chose to purse it in a milieu where her boss might be referred to as POTUS (insofar as her boss might function as “el commandante en jefe”). To not get too specific, let’s just say that at some point in time, she decided to “accelerate her life”.
This may have been a bad decision on several levels. First of all, Curly had a problem with authority. She also, had a problem with laws and regulations that seemed to make no sense. And, most importantly perhaps, she loathed polyester. But she charged on blindly with high hopes (as she so often did). She went through a civilian medical school with some adventures previously mentioned. She went through an internship where, when she was not wearing scrubs, she wore a uniform which automatically added 10 pounds to your ass and, during the summer, included white pumps. Egads! And then she was sent out to run around in camouflage and go on cool camping trips in the desert. More on that to follow... And finally, she returned to the same government institution to study orthopedics.
At first, she was a bit apprehensive about entering the wolf’s home turf. But she was assured, on a regular basis, that the wolf’s teeth were not only dull, but not interested in her. And everyone lived happily ever after for two years. What Mother Goose didn’t know was that Little Blonde Riding Hood (LBRH) was going to break up with one of the Big Bad Wolves and subsequently develop a deep depression. Although most of the Little Pigs (i.e. junior wolves) had experienced some personal emergency (family deaths, childbirth, divorce, sick pets) which LBRH had helped cover, she was hung out to dry. She was confronted publicly and told “you can’t let your personal life interfere with your professional performance”. When she overslept one day, she received a public flogging by no less than 5 people and also received a letter in her file. When she tried to explain that there might be psychiatric extenuating circumstances, she was told “that’s not our problem…that’s your problem. Take care of it on your own time.” So she did. And then, she was told by one of the “good guys” - “I’d like the name of your psychiatrist and your permission for him to open your files to me.” Oh yeah, I’m not kidding.
There is a lot more to this story, and a lot more depression. This little fairy tale is just to set the scene…