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Doctor Curmudgeon® A Word to Terrify!


By Diane Batshaw Eisman, M.D. FAAFP

Doctor Curmudgeon® is in a mild panic.

To her, panic can be minimal, mild, nearly severe, or AARRRRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

But today, it is only a mild state of panic as she searches for a document.

She has had a lifelong problem with the word, “organize,” or to be more accurate, she has a difficulty with the infinitive: “to organize’

There was a point when she excused her state of disorganizational panic as some genetic quirk. However, when she began to reflect, she realized that both parents were not perplexed by the task of organization, and her child is not in a quandary over this.

She has decided to blame this on a malfunction of her brain, some quirk of the wiring up there.

Friends have tried to help with this.

Those of you who have read other columns, are aware that she has contemplated setting fire to her desk; thus gaining a fresh start as papers accumulate in a more manageable amount (actually a stack)

It is those pesky papers that create the problem for her.

She has even suspected that, somehow, at night, when lights are extinguished, and all is quiet, these nasty things slither over to each other and procreate…producing more of themselves to harass the physician when she enters her office in the morning.

What is the real problem with the papers?

Doctor Curmudgeon® thought about this.

The brilliant light bulb of Eureka flashed an answer.

Well…she has to be able to see the stuff in front of her. This is quite a difficulty, because after a while, it becomes mind boggling to peer at all the piles of stuff. And, her mind is boggled enough!

Finally, she realized that Armageddon (the well-organized office manager) had lots of files with clearly demarcated labels.
Lots of files, all in order with big labels…wow.

And so, the disorderly physician has begun to very slowly place papers in files as soon as she gets them. Important things that must be saved…for the time will come when she needs a specific document.

There is still a huge deluge of papers on her desk, but no longer does she walk around with a piece of paper in her hand wondering where to put it so she can retrieve it if the time ever arises.

No more a fear of opening the mail and discovering something she must save.

No more her usual confused wandering with a document in hand, wondering what the heck to do with it, where to put it.(This bears repeating…and so it was repeated)

No more that frenzied search for something that she knew she saw a few days ago.

No more deskly disorder.

No more early morning fear of looking at her desk.

Well…actually….almost no more…because those pesky papers still manage to breed at night!

Doctor Curmudgeon® is Diane Batshaw Eisman, M.D., a physician-satirist. This column originally appeared on SERMO, the leading global social network for doctors.

SERMO www.sermo.com “talk real world medicine

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