Six words I hate: “The Government requires this of us.” Five words: “Will the defendant please stand.” And C: “Fill this out.”
There is an old saying that goes something like this: “ Power corrupts. Absolute power, well, that is kind of cool.”
Yesterday I once again, got beat down with the clipboard.
I hate the clipboard, in one small way, a corporate and government symbol of power that is used over me.
They hand you the clipboard at the Dr.’s Office and tell you to fill in ALL THE QUESTIONS.
At the Insurance Agency, the man with the clipboard walks around your car, and rapes you repeatedly until the value of the automobile has been reduced to say … Skippy Peanut Butter.
The Specialist walks in with the clipboard and gives you the good news on your prostrate tests.
The Tax Accessor from Canadian County shows up, pulls out his clipboard.
I could go on, but what is the point?
You get it I am sure.
Usually the person who wields the clipboard, is also, the biggest moron in the place, which of course doesn’t make it any better. The other shoe drops, and you have the authority issue to contend with, the person with the clipboard, has the authority over YOU to make you miserable (or at least they think they have this imagined power) if they deem it fit to do so.
Now yesterday I go to a “Hand Specialist” because I have a hand problem. Which at the time, figured to be the best thing to do according to my doctor and myself, see someone who specializes in matter such as this. Before going, because I know I cannot write, I print out all the vital information in my case. I hand the receptionist the copy of all my prescriptions, medical data, financial data, programs … all of it. Which I thought was good thinking on my part.
She in turn hands me a clipboard and curtly states … “Fill this out.” I then say, “Don’t believe that is going to happen, you see, my hand is messed up, and I cannot write.” She looks at my wife who is standing next to me, and says, “Can she write, can she spell?” which is clearly borderline racist to me (my wife is Asian), and I am very close to losing it.
So I smile, you know the one I am talking about here, you see it all the time on Natural Wonders. Where the predator is fixing to take out the unsuspecting prey for the day, and he smiles that sort of smile.
Anyway, I say, “That won’t work either. We can do it some other time, when the hand is better. What we have here is enough to get us started. Okay?” She says, this time rather firmly … “No-one-see’s-the-doctor-without-filling-out-the-form.” (with special attention exhibited here by repeatedly tapping the clipboard/note with her well manicured 22 year old finger)
Bingo! I have officially just passed my tolerance level for moron’s and idiots on Thursday afternoons. Raising the octave of my voice at least two levels, and shifting my body posture, to reflect my current situation in life, which is anger, I explain it one more time.
“Listen, see if you can wrap your head around all this. I have come to see a HAND SPECIALIST this is because I have an issue with my RIGHT HAND and I am RIGHT HANDED. I cannot fill out your F—king form, either you can find someone here that can write it down, when I repeat it to them or put it off until later. DO YOU UNDERSTAND THIS CONCEPT. It is often referred to as “HELPING SOMEONE” and not hassling them. What is it gonna be, I strongly suspect in your case you have missed it again, no writing – no form – we are done. ”
She then instructs me, “to go find someone to fill it out for me, because SHE IS NOT GOING TO DO IT.”
End of story I suppose.
Later on, while standing outside this decorative concrete monument of medical stupidity, in the parking lot next to my truck, I think about it all. This is a period of cooling down before getting behind the wheel. Would all of this, any of this, been different?
If I had only spoken Spanish, they would have found someone who did, I have seen it done over and over at the Hospital ER.
If I could not write (illiterate) they would have sent someone in to write it for me (again, have seen it done).
If I had been alone, all by my lonesome, would they have responded in this manner?
What if my arm was encased in a sling, then what?
The last time this happened to me, it was somewhat different. I answered all the question that were what I felt pertinent and not personal in nature. If I came across one that was what I considered none of their business or unrelated, I simply put “N/A” in the space.
Clipboard girl this time says to me, “You didn’t answer ALL OF THE QUESTIONS ON THE FORM.” To which I politely replied, “I answered all of them I am going to answer.”
She says, “What is NA?”
I reply, “Not Applicable or No Answer.”
She then says, “That is NOT an answer.” Again, quite by accident really, I have discovered another scathing indictment of good public lottery supported education in Oklahoma.
That is an answer. “Not Applicable is an answer so is No Answer. Question asked, questioned answered.”
I then inquired of her, “When you went to school was it on a BIG BUS like everyone else, or one of them short jobbies?”
Game On! You are now officially entering a “Clipboard flying area, use extreme caution.”
Didn’t have to stand by my truck that day, it was raining, I just took a seat in the lobby and kind of cranked it down for a short period of time. Just sat there, taking long slow deep breaths, crossed my arms, sat in the chair and stared at the floor. I may not know it all, but I do know, that an upset person behind the wheel of a 4,000 lb. vehicle is not a good answer for anything. Regardless if it is you or I, it is better to mellow out.
So I sat there and I chilled. All the time, I could feel Ms. Clipboard and her eyes boring holes thru the back of my head. That part, I have to admit, was kind of spooky.
I think or believe, it is important for one to take what life gives you and learn from it and move on. I surely do. Today I learned this fact of life. If I ever come across a Genie in a bottle, and I am granted three wishes?
My number one wish will be for him to give me a clipboard to shove up someone’s ass!
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