Sunday, October 2, 2016

Rogue Podiatrist

So far this election season, I have avoided saying anything about politics on the blog because we are inundated with the stuff and I think we need a few laughs a lot more than we need political rants. So I feel compelled to warn you that this blog contains political content just below the surface. On the surface, this is a discussion of why we fired my husband Ron’s podiatrist this week.

I believe that politics has no place in the doctor’s office. It should not enter the doctor-patient relationship. Yet Ron’s podiatrist seems to feel it’s his sworn duty to plaster his office with political posters and bombard his patients with his extremely conservative, borderline crackpot, political views. I will call this podiatrist Jack to protect his identity, even though I don’t really care about protecting his identity. But I don’t want to be sued for libel. Ron has gone to Jack for over a dozen years and Jack is an excellent podiatrist, who has taken good care of Ron’s feet. I now wonder a little about this since Jack has been baiting Ron to argue with him about Black Lives Matter for months. Jack wants to incite Ron to say that all lives matter. He doesn’t get the point of the movement. (He’s white, of course.) So this is why I have to wonder a little about why he has taken such good care of a brother’s feet.  Wouldn’t he prefer to keep a Black man’s feet out of commission so the guy can’t run away from the police? Perhaps he thinks it only sportsmanlike to give Ron a fair running start.

We have struggled to shut him down at every appointment. I was once in his office and he started in on a tirade against Obama and the Affordable Care Act. I cut him off and told him that the Affordable Care Act has saved me thousands of dollars (it has) and that I get down on my knees every day and thank Obama for passing it (I don’t really), and that he should shut up about it. He did. But, how unprofessional is that to get into politics with patients? This man is actually a sweet person. He once ran into us at a restaurant and chatted with us for a while before our dinner arrived. After he left and we had finished eating, when we asked for the bill, the waitress informed us that he had paid the bill. He bought us dinner. He is also extremely knowledgeable about foot care, which is the main reason Ron has continued to hide his eyes and walk past the offensive political posters in Jack’s office all these years (on well-tended diabetic feet).

Last week, however, Ron went to Jack’s office for routine foot care and was accosted by a bevy of posters touting the Dark Lord for president. I am being careful not to say the Dark Lord’s name, both because I do not wish to invoke his energy by naming him and because I fear that if he becomes president I will be tracked down and tortured by the Russian Mafia, endangering my family and possibly my cats by association. It would be very easy to torture my cats since they are addicted to tuna and thus vulnerable.

As a diabetic, Ron goes to the podiatrist every three months to have his toenails trimmed and his feet examined. It’s dangerous for him to trim his toenails himself because if he accidentally nicks a toe, the cut can become infected and not heal. He lost half a toe that exact way once a long time ago in a galaxy far away called Vegas. So last week he was in the chair, when Jack decided it was his sworn duty to convince Ron to vote for the Dark Lord. How can someone who knows so much about feet know so little about pretty much every other blessed thing in the universe? This goes to show you that if you become obsessed with feet you will lose vast amounts of gray matter. Too much energy diverted to the other end of the body, perhaps? Jack believes that Fox News is beamed down by God Almighty Himself. Over the years, we have deflected his insane ravings about the Bush Administration and the wisdom of engagement in Iraq; Sarah Palin (he would give his left nut to sleep with her, which clearly qualifies her to be VP and to step in if necessary if the President is taken out by a stray bullet from Dick Cheney); how Hillary will sneak into his house in the middle of the night and steal his gun (wresting it out of his tight little hand, I presume); why Obama is the anti-Christ and anyway he’s not an American citizen (of course, Christ wasn’t either, so maybe that explains it); and how Mitt Romney actually won the last election but Nancy Pelosi’s pet canary pecked extra holes in ballots all over Ohio (that canary should be arrested). But now he has reached an entirely new level of political invective and ignorance and Ron can’t take it anymore.

Jack agrees with the Dark Lord that we should round up all the Muslims and make them wear yellow stars. A wall between the U.S. and Mexico strikes him as brilliant. (Why didn’t someone already think of that? Such as the Berliners, perhaps?) Like all the other Dark Lord followers, he thinks it’s fine to berate women for putting on weight, but he somehow doesn’t notice that the Dark Lord is fat. Maybe if you become a follower you have to sign an oath not to call the Dark Lord fat. The Russian Mafia forces you to eat a vegan diet for a month if you call the Dark Lord fat. We are not surprised that Jack is pleased to see the Dark Lord verbally abuse women. He had a lovely wife and she left him pretty early in the marriage. (I can’t imagine him physically abusing women because, you have to trust me on this, he really does have a big heart in his own way, but he is a verbal abuser.) The turnover rate of his lovely female office staff (receptionist, assistant, etc.) is so high that you could get whiplash watching them tear out the door. Every one of them as sweet as can be and he is such a bully that they flee. I have rarely been in his office, but once when I was there and he was rude and domineering to his female assistant, I chastised him for it and made him apologize to her. He likes me a lot, and I think it’s because I remind him of his mom. I don’t let him get away with his crap.

While contemplating the drivel that comes out of Jack’s mouth, I have had this clever idea that the government should develop a No Fly-By List of all the people who cannot be trusted to sit next to anyone else on an airplane because they will inappropriately foist crazy political views on them. (Obama is working for a Martian cartel of single-cell organisms that are plotting to take over Earth. He communicates with them using the binary system.) Jack would be number one on the No Fly-By List. He needs to be separated from decent, ordinary people.

When someone goes to the doctor’s office, they should not come home with their blood pressure 50 points higher than their IQ. Doctors are healers, right? So when Ron came out of Jack’s office this week with his blood pressure orbiting the planet, and the receptionist cheerfully offered to make him an appointment in three months, he held up his hand and walked on by. He came home angrier than I have seen him since he stepped barefoot on a stray Lego in the living room at the Ranch in the middle of the night. So we immediately searched online and found an alternative podiatrist, and we called to make an appointment for his next trim with the new doctor. On Friday, he formally transferred his records from Jack’s office. Jack has officially gone over to the Dark Lord and we will have none of it.

On Friday night, we skyped a longtime friend of ours who lives in Uruguay. She is German and is working in Uruguay for a few years. She said that Germany is, for the first time ever, sending election observers to the U.S., and that if she were not working in Uruguay, she would have signed up to be an observer. She told us that Europeans are stunned by what is happening in the U.S., and that Germans in particular, with their history, are deeply disturbed. “We can’t believe anyone will vote for him,” she said incredulously. “Do you know anyone who will vote for him?” So Ron told her about Jack and his recent decision to ditch him as his podiatrist. I am often afraid to ask people their political views because I am easily astonished by the pervasive ignorance in this country.  But I doubt I know anyone other than Jack who will vote for the Dark Lord. We don’t live in a Dark Lord hot zone. 

I will kind of miss Jack. He’s a dumb lug who is very sweet underneath that idiocy. If I were to tell Jack something in parting, I would say, “You have a good heart. I just wish you weren’t such an asshole.” If I were a vandal, I’d sneak over to his office in the middle of the night and put an anti-NRA sticker on his mailbox. He’s so oblivious, though, that he probably wouldn’t notice it until sometime around the inauguration.

I was looking for an image of feet and remembered how much I love this one. I hope the beautiful energy of this picture counteracts my invoking of the Dark Lord in the blog.

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