Concierge Patienting

I got a letter from my doctor a while back letting me know that he was changing his practice type (he’s becoming a concierge doctor, in effect) and beginning in May, I would have the opportunity to become part of his “smaller, more personal” practice… for a small monthly fee. He promises to see fewer patients, be on time, spend more time with each of his patients, and provide on-demand service, 24/7 as they say. And because he’ll have a smaller case-load, he’ll be able to stay up-to-date with the latest medical information and techniques.

This news was disappointing because I’ve really come to like my doctor. He’s about my age, so he’s got some experience and I’ve never felt that he was rushing my appointments. I always trusted that he was staying current with his medical know-how and lord knows I’ve gotten lots of tests over the years. The only difference I can see in the change in his practice is that it will cost me more out-of-pocket (“For about the cost of your monthly cable bill. Isn’t your health worth it?” That’s the way it’s advertised. Well, to tell you the truth, I’m not that happy with my cable service.)

I’ve decided not to continue with my current doctor, but here’s what I’ll be proposing to the new one, when I find him or her: I’m going to become your “concierge patient.” For a small monthly fee (I haven’t decided how much yet, but it will probably be about the cost of your monthly car payment, if your car is a Mercedes S550), I will be available for medical issues 24/7. If I’m ill at 3:00 a.m., I’ll be happy to let you come to my house to diagnose my problem. If I need tests or referral to a specialist, I’ll split the cost with you, over and above what Medicare pays. I promise to be on time to my appointments (or no more than an hour late) and spend as much time with you as you think appropriate, even if it takes all afternoon to figure out why I have a pain in my elbow/knee/big toe. I’ll gladly let you take your free time in the evening to keep up with your reading (except when I need you to come to my house at 3:00 a.m., of course) and even bid you “bon voyage” when you go on vacation, except that I expect you to come right back from Spain, Greece or the Caymans if I’m sick.

If you agree to these terms (and why wouldn’t you; I’ll be a great patient), please sign and date below and expect a call at say… 3:00 a.m.

Product photography

I’ve been doing some “product” photos for the St.Mary’s Medical Center Foundation’s Butterfly Ball on-line auction and it’s always a challenge to get them just right.  The auction program can only accommodate square photos, so arranging the items to show them in their best aspect means lots of experimenting with placement and lighting.  Take a look at some of pieces I’ve done on my “365” page and go to the auction site to bid on some great items.

A little behind in my work

I don’t remember jokes.  For some reason, neither the set-ups nor the punchlines stick in my mind for any length of time.  A friend of mine, who has since moved on to that big comedy club in the sky (I’m assuming that’s where he went, though that’s not a given), used to be able to rattle off joke after joke.  I was always in awe of his ability to find just the right combination of funny stories for any occasion.

One of the few jokes I do remember, for some reason, involves the butcher who backed into his meat-grinder and got a little behind in his work.  That’s the way I’ve been feeling for the last few days; my contribution to my “photo-a-day” project has lagged.  Oh, I’ve been shooting; I just haven’t been posting.  Well, today, there are three new photos taken over the last couple of days.

  • I got a shot of Abby, our Old English Sheepdog, in an unusually calm pose.
  • The sun was streaming through the window and caught our Christmas poinsettia in a colorful pose.
  • Last night, about midnight, we had nine deer in our front yard foraging for acorns.  I processed and processed one of the photos to give the scene (of one of the deer feeding alone) a mysterious feel.

All the photos are under the tab 365 at the top.

Bulletin — 4/365

I’ve always been fascinated by bulletin boards.  They are a window into the minds of those who create them.  “Create” may, perhaps, indicate an intentionality that is not necessarily intended, but creativity is, I believe, mainly a subconscious event that is manifested in a tangible way at some point.  The bulletin boards I like most are those that are communally created in public places, like laundromats and grocery stores.  They have a natural beauty and structure that most artists would be hard-pressed to recreate from scratch.

My photo for today is a portion of my own bulletin board (more pronouncements than announcements) and as an added bonus, I’ve included a photo I took some time ago of a coffee shop bulletin board.

Tired of clean up after the kids?  Need someone to take your kids away for the day?  Looking for a new house?  Looking for a roommate or a lawnmower?  Whatever you need is right here, just a phone call away.