A meeting was cancelled and drplastipicker meanders around the hospital, convincing the 1%.
December 14, 2019
Today our middle management meeting was cancelled. We have iPhones with our meeting schedule on the iPhone calendar. There was a strike through the CANCELLED MEETING so I thought the CANCELLED MEETING was cancelled, and therefore we had a meeting. I showed up. No one was there. I was happy it was cancelled but did vaguely think slightly annoyed “If I had known, I could have picked up more plastic.” Today marks the moment when I reached my 100th instagram follower (real followers not fake followers, I did not pay anyone to boost nothing!) and 100th bag of ocean bound plastic collected, and 70th blog post. It’s been a busy 3 months!
Middle management takes much more time than given, so I felt no guilt meandering around the hospital doing work errands. I had been up early at 630am with the schedulers stream-lining shifts and clinics and saved our department already a few thousand dollars, and I do a lot of middle management tasks over the weekend during my OFF time.
My Assistant Middle Managment Buddy: So first I stopped by to see my assistant middle management buddy, Dr. JW. She had mistakenly gone to the meeting room too before I did. See! Great minds think alike. But she had returned to our middle managment office. We have to sit there sometimes, because adult primary care is trying to steal it. Professional office real estate territorial disputes are real! I dropped off a tin of holiday cookies from our pediatric schedulers to Dr. JW. My friend is a wonderful person, very empathic and well loved. But she is clumsy. She was chatting with me and walking away backwards, when she tumbled and took a big spill! “JW oh my gosh!” I rushed to her side. She was moving all four limbs but a bit shell shocked. Two summers ago when we had the new phyisican welcome party at her house, she had tumbled and knocked her forehead against something. There was no loss of consciousness, no vomiting, and no blood coming from her mouth. She immediately got up, and kept on chatting with our new pediatric colleagues as a large egghead was forming on her forehead. I will never forgot that day.
Today, she fell again and she rolled, I kid you not – twice – and then was stunned for a bit. All the cookies spilled onto the floor. She sat up half laughing, but I think half sad. I plopped myself on the ground with her. “YOU ARE SO CLUMSY!” I playfully poked her in the shoulder. “You need to be more careful or you are going to break a hip when you are old. Are you drinking milk?” We talked briefly about her calcium intake. I secretly wondered if she has post-concussive syndrome? She then realized the cookies were strewn everywhere, and then carefully got up to collect them. She texted me later “So embrassing! And I was wearing my new safer shoes.” I subsequently texted her questions about her calcium intake. We ended with my recommendation that she start going plastic picking with me to improve her balance and propioception! I don’t know what it is, but I have much better balance now.
Powerful Female Board Member: I wandered further into the hospital. I work outpatient so for me going to our main hospital is fun. I did some window shopping at the gift shop. And then called our department secretary, “D! If I don’t get my fit-mask test, will I get in trouble?” The yearly fit-mask test is this annual ritual where the employee health RNs ensure that you know how to wear a special mask to prevent transmission of airborn diseases. You put on this plastic cylindrical headpiece and the RN sprays this bitter vapor into a small circular hole near your face, and you bow to her 5 times.
I continued talking with D our secretary, “Does that mean I can be put under work suspension and have the holiday off? I don’t mind it I don’t get paid. I’ll take a year sabbatical unpaid!” I had just received an email from the corporation telling me I was delinquent. D laughed. But I do appreciate my position, and as I tell my patients Dr. P needs to work to eat. I headed to Employee Health.
I ran into a female-physician just a few years older than me, who is actually one of the most powerful physicians in our organization. I am not joking. Dr. JM knows me by first name. “Hi!” She called out. “What are you up to?” I replied, “I have to do that fit-mask test. Our meeting was cancelled. I’m thinking maybe they’ll let me go on sabattical if I don’t do it, but I don’t want to risk it.” She smiled in amusement. She was overdue too, and we went together to put on plastic hoods, have bitter vapor sprayed into our faces, and bow to the employee health nurse.
JM is a super specialist specialist, and the most powerful physician in our organization and a mommy. I told her about my new passion drplasticpicker.com, half in jest while we were waiting. Then she said, “We should go plastic picking together!” She has kids the same age. “That would be great!” I told her. She said she’d tweet about my blog. She asked me about parental leave and asked my opinion about some cooporate changes that involve millions of dollars, and I sat there not really understanding but nodding my head sagely. “Great!” She ended, “I think that’s the right thing to do!” I agreed, not really sure what I was agreeing with – but she is super smart and a specialist on the most complicated and crucial organ in the body.
Mr. Plastic Picker: After the Fit-Mask testing and saying good-bye to the most powerful physician in the organization – I stopped by Mr. Plastic Picker’s office. He works in the hospital. We don’t see each other much at work since I’m an outpatient clinic-based doctor. “I just saw JM. She knows me! Does she know you?” Mr. Plastic Picker ushered me into his office and shaking his head negative. “Well,” I said, “she asked my opinion about some really important stuff.” Mr. Plastic Picker nodded vaguely. So I did an hour or so of charting in his office and more middle management work. I looked around his office too and saw his ceramic mug he uses to drink water. He usually just ignores me while I’m in his office snooping around. This is what is sounds like there. He talks into the dictaphone in a monotone voice, “Medial aspect of the navicular bone . . . well corticated (something something) . . . projecting.” Some specialist calls and his voice becomes jovial, “Not a good AP view. Tallus looks pretty good.” And on and on.
After about an hour of quietly working next to each other, we decided to have lunch in the hospital cafeteria. This is not often, as we work in different buildings in our large organization and different departments. But today was a treat! I got to spy on Mr. Plastic Picker’s lunch-time plastic utilization. We headed down to the cafeteria and they have a decent salad bar. It was about $5 a person. It’s certainly not cheap. Soup Plantation is about $9.49 with a coupon. There are a lot of Soup Plantations near our locations. The $9.49 at Soup Plantation includes a drink. So $5 is better than $9.49 but not as good as making it yourself. But Mr. Plastic Picker does what he wants. These are the two salads we bought.
So we had healthy and delicious salad. I had not realized that he was using the plastic clam-shell container most days. I chose the paper plate, and did not spill any on the walk down to his super specialist specialist office. He used a fork he keeps in his office which is from home. I used a clean reused plastic spoon I had put in my bag! I did throw the spoon away afterwards but I think I’ve used it about 5 times. He drank water from a small plastic cup that he got from the hospital coffee stand “cafe.” It was lemon infused water but he said they refuse to let you refill any water bottles there as it is not “sanitary.” Hmmm. I’m going to have to talk to upper management about that. I used my reusable water bottle with filtered water from home.
Medical School Classmate Friend and Super specialist specialist: I can only sit in Mr. Plastic Picker’s office for an hour or so. His super specialist specialist office I find somewhat claustrophobic. One of our medical school classmates joined the hospital the same time we did and works in the same department. We stopped by to say hi to him. It was nice to catch up for a few minutes and I gave him 2 rolls of Who Gives a Cr@p toilet paper https://drplasticpicker.com/who-gives-a-crp-toilet-paper-and-drplasticpicker-is-not-sure-if-i-got-the-toilet-paper-for-free/. I’m still not sure if I paid for them or got them for free? Anyway, we chatted about family and life. We talked about toilet paper.
So in the end, it was a fun morning in lieu of another middle management meeting. I delivered a tin of cookies from the pediatric schedulers to my middle management friend, and we experienced together her tumble. I got to advise her about calcium and her need to improve her propioception and balance with exercises like going plastic picking with me. I got to finish my fit-mask testing with the most powerful physician in our organization who is also a woman (yeah!) and we bowed in plastic hoods to the Employee Health Nurses, and set up a possible Plastic Picking date. I ate with Mr. Plastic Picker salad, no meat. And now I know I need to plan on how to get him either paper clam-shell containers or a reusable one. I did convince him (I think) to drink just tap water with a reusable water bottle I had brought. He liked it. And we got to chat with an old friend about life and toilet paper. It was a good day and the department ran fine even with one middle management meeting cancelled.
Click here to read about how drplasticpicker plans to reduce plastic use at a big corporate event https://drplasticpicker.com/drplasticpicker-preplans-how-to-reduce-plastic-at-big-corporate-meeting-newport-beach/