In Which A Doofus Makes Himself Known In The Colonoscopy Waiting Area

Screen Shot 2016-06-21 at 7.11.17 AMAS IF MY LIFE is not exciting enough, I had the pleasure of escorting Zen-Den, at 6:00 a.m., to the hospital for a routine colonoscopy.

I don’t know if you’ve ever been the Colonoscopy Escort, but your duties are simple:

  1. Get the [snarly and grouchy] patient to hospital at assigned time.
  2. Wait by yourself in the Colonoscopy Waiting Area while patient is checked-in.
  3. When receptionist tells you it’s okay, go sit with the patient in Pre-Op Area until patient is rolled away for procedure.
  4. Go back out to Colonoscopy Waiting Area and wait.
  5. After procedure go sit with patient in Post-Op Area until he or she is released back into the wild.
  6. Take [ravenously hungry] patient home and feed + water him or her.

# # #

Screen Shot 2016-06-20 at 5.11.34 PM

AS PER DUTY #4 I was sitting in the Colonoscopy Waiting Area, playing games on my iPad, waiting, when the receptionist called out the name of someone’s Colonoscopy Escort.

No one in the waiting area responded.

She said the name again.

*crickets*

The receptionist got up from her desk and walked around the Colonoscopy Waiting Area, quietly asking each of us if we were this someone’s Colonoscopy Escort, until she eventually got to a 40-something man with his face buried in his laptop computer.

Standing directly in front of him she said his name again, loudly, and he finally looked up at her.

By now everyone in the Colonoscopy Waiting Area was staring at him, because human beings are nosy, and because waiting is boring so anything out of the ordinary is entertainment.

She told him he could go back and wait with the patient, DUTY #3, to which he said: “WHY THE HELL WOULD I WANT TO DO THAT?”

And immediately went back to looking at his laptop.

# # #

Screen Shot 2016-06-20 at 5.06.03 PMTHE RECEPTIONIST WAS IRRITATED, but shrugged and went back to her desk.

However, the rest of us, the cooperative Colonoscopy Escorts, started sending hate glances toward this guy.  While an adorable 80-something lady with silver white hair went a step further by looking over the top of her bejeweled reading glasses, and loudly *tsking-tsking* in his general direction.

Somehow that particular sound got this guy’s attention and he looked up to see all of us glaring at him, shaking our heads at his obvious Colonoscopy Escort faux pas.

So with a noisy *sigh* he snapped his laptop shut and trudged over to the receptionist’s desk, ready to be taken to sit with someone who had the misfortune of knowing this man well enough to ask him to be his or her Colonoscopy Escort.

Can you even imagine?  0.o

{ Images |1| |2| |3| from Pixabay }

Published by

Ally Bean

Observant. Creative. Humorous. Adaptable. Happy enough. Looking for the crumb of truth in the cookie of life.

76 thoughts on “In Which A Doofus Makes Himself Known In The Colonoscopy Waiting Area”

  1. Oh what fun. I have also experienced the unbridled joy that is colonoscopy escort duty. Such glamorous lives we lead, full of adventure and romance.

    My waiting room experience was much less notable. I believe I may have been catalog exactly how long it has been since the room got its last shipment of fresh magazines after my phone went out.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. serena, me too! I desperately wanted to know who he was there with, but I never found out. I did get a chance to talk with the little old lady who *tsked* and she was a delight, my role model for how to age gracefully.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. You are such a good escort. When I took my husband I dropped him off in front of the hospital (outside) and took off to Starbucks. They called when he was ready for pick up. I found him in a room gorging himself on juice and cookies. Lately thought I’ve heard that some places make someone stay on premises while the patient is there. My husband accompanied my brother for a meniscus surgery on his knee. The receptionist told my husband he had to stay. He said that he had no authority to make decisions if something goes south. She said he had to stay anyway. He yelled over to my brother, “I’m going to have them pull the plug if something happens!” Unfortunately not many people thought it was funny. Always make sure you have the right audience.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Kate, in this hospital someone has to be right there in the waiting area, or in the hospital with an assigned pager, during the entire procedure. The waiting area is a comfortable space so it’s not bad to be sitting there. But as a Colonoscopy Escort you’re expected to be… oh I don’t know, cooperative?

      Love your story. I would have laughed if I overheard the conversation, but then my sense of humor is a bit wacky.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Holly, that’s a good point. I have no idea what you do if you have no one to go with you, so it could have been a co-worker, I suppose. All I know is that he was not happy.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Holly, in my experience having a colonoscopy at this hospital, I was asked if I wanted my escort to be called to come sit with me while I waited. I was the one who decided, so I’m thinking that this guy’s person asked for him. But who knows, eh?

          Liked by 1 person

            1. Around here I’ve not heard of being able to drop someone off, then come back. But other commenters have said the same thing, so obviously standard practices vary depending on where you live. All I know for sure is that colonoscopy is a nasty experience no matter where you are!

              Liked by 1 person

  3. I have not had the tailpipe checked yet, but I’ve needed a lithotripsy escort four times and my dear old mom filled the role each time. I always love the look on her face when they start asking me, her only son, if I have a living will and/or DNR orders….

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    1. evilsquirrel13, oh I bet that’s an awful moment for your mom. You’re an adult [presumably] but still her baby. At least you have someone who cares about you with you, eh?

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  4. Been there, done that and not just colonoscopies. I’ve been in the waiting room through two stomach surgeries, numerous epidural injections, back surgery and two stent placements. You can definitely hear some interesting conversations and see some interesting things in the hospital waiting areas. Great story Ally!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lynn, it was funny at the time, if only because of the instant group disapproval directed toward this guy, and how one little lady got him to do the right thing. 😉

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  5. Actually . . . I’m with the guy with the laptop.

    Why should he comply with consensus?
    Why should he succumb to “Group Think”?
    Why should anyone else there care what HE does?

    And shame on the old lady for trying to shame him into submission.
    As if he were the sheep and she the sheep dog.
    Her “tsks tsks” show that she is judging him . . . like a church lady.

    Maybe the person he brought asked him NOT to come back so that he could use the time for peaceful reflection and meditation.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. nrhatch, you bring up many valid points. We’ve assumed that the only way to behave as a Colonoscopy Escort is to do what the hospital tells you to do. This is probably because going along is the fastest and easiest way to get out of the hospital.

      BUT when someone who escorts to the beat of a different bongo comes along, we must attempt to show some kindness and understanding. Maybe.

      Still think he’s a Doofus…

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      1. Instead of being an uncaring “Doofus” . . . maybe he was a Knight who came to the rescue at the last moment when the scheduled escort fell ill . . . maybe he had a deadline at work that demanded his attention . . . maybe the patient encouraged him to stay in the waiting room so the patient could doze and snooze while waiting.

        No one in the waiting room knows HIS story. And maybe it wasn’t incumbent on him to share it with “the world.”

        Personally, I enjoy NOT doing what the hospital expects me to do.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. You present a compelling case for this particular Colonoscopy Escort’s behavior. We will never know for sure what motivated him to do what he did. All I know is that he seemed to be put out by the whole scene. It was kind of like a SNL skit. Pointed and funny. At 7:00 a.m.

          Liked by 1 person

            1. Laughing here. I did mind my own knitting on this one by not saying a word to the guy, but will admit that I adored the older lady who got him to get with the program. There are times to be detached, and times to be a change agent, I do believe. The question is, of course, do you trust yourself to know when to be which one?

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              1. Whether to remain detached or be a “change agent” depends on the situation and whether “imminent danger and harm” are involved. In this case, I would have assumed that the patient was being cared for by caring professionals . . . and was in no imminent danger.

                If I’d seen the patent go in . . . and if it had been a scared young child, I might have decided to talk to laptop guy about his priorities. But since most colonoscopies are performed on people who are old enough to “calm themselves down” I would have
                let things be ~ giving the benefit of the doubt to laptop guy that he knew better than me how he “should” be.

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              2. Do I trust myself to know when to step in?
                Not always. But sometimes.

                Most colonoscopies are performed on consenting adults who are old enough to comfort themselves while they wait and smart enough to choose the right “escort” for their needs.

                While they wait, they are in no imminent danger. They are in the care of caring professionals. So I would remain detached in the face of what you observed.

                In contrast, if I had seen a 7-year-old patient led away with tear-stained face for a colonoscopy, I might have spoken with laptop guy about his priorities and queried whether he thought his scared child might “need” him.

                Of course in that situation, he might already have been by the child’s side.

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                1. Thanks, Ally! You found both the comments that WP swallowed whole before posting.

                  I enjoyed your post and the ensuing conversation thread despite our very different perspectives and takes on the situation. I expect that my vantage point differs from most others because I prefer to wait for medical procedures in quiet reflection rather than entertaining “escorts.”

                  And I have a NO VISITOR policy when I’m in the hospital. Just me and the morphine drip. 😀

                  Liked by 1 person

                  1. Once you add the morphine part of the equation, things are much different. Better, even. Nothing like a few Dali-esque visions to keep a person entertained.

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          1. I agree ~>”It was kind of like a SNL skit. Pointed and funny.”

            I enjoy watching people . . . but, in this case, the guy with the laptop was “minding his own knitting.” It would have been the rest of the group that “amused” me.

            Liked by 1 person

  6. Haha, I couldn’t pass by this title when I dusted off my reader this morning and took a peek inside. Thanks for a great laugh. I needed it considering I’ve had painters in my house for five days now, and I’m going a little crazy. (We’re getting our house ready to list. Busy, busy, busy.)

    Hope you’re doing well! Had to stop by and say hi. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Carrie, I thought of you as this was happening. Figured that irritable people in a hospital were part and parcel of your life. You gotta laugh or you’d go nuts. 🙂

      Painters in the house make me angsty, so I understand your craziness. I hope your house sells quickly so that you can get back to your quiet, productive life.

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      1. Thank you. You and me both. And I have to tell you, your post not long ago about a home on your street not selling because the people didn’t do any upgrades made me realize we have to put the time in to touch things up with our own. I didn’t comment because I was swamped, but I did read and enjoy it, and I took the advice to heart!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Oh I’m pleased that you got something from that post. Just a bit of pizzazz outside their front door would go a long way toward selling the place. Still not sure if they’re really trying to sell that house– or testing the market. Who knows?

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  7. Son. Definitely the Son. I once took my mother for cataract surgery. Apparently the son dropped her at the door and then asked to be called when it was time to pick her up.

    I heard the nurse call him 1/2 an hour before she would be ready. He showed up 1.5 hours later. Annoyed. In his running gear. He went running instead of waiting for his mom or even picking her up in a timely manner.

    My JUDGY JUDGMENTAL BITCH FACE was in full bloom when he arrived. I was not alone. We, the silent waiting room companions, stared at him hard.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. itsathought2, what a story! People do selfish things, but showing up late in a situation like that one seems to me, to put it mildly, unkind. I can see why you pulled the face you did.

      Of course, maybe if you’ve never been in a hospital, not known what it’s like to be trapped inside one, you don’t take your escort responsibilities as seriously as those of us who have spent time as patients. I dunno. Just a thought.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I sure hope it wasn’t his partner having the procedure. It won’t say much about their relationship.

    Having said that, I went to my colonoscopy alone, drove home afterwards, then went out to play golf. One of the women in my 4-some that evening was a GP and she was horrified. I still don’t know what the big deal was.

    I’m starting to suspect I wasn’t given the *good* drugs 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. joanne, around here there’s no way you’d be allowed to go to the procedure alone. Don’t know if it’s a regional or national thing. You sound like your experience was as good as it can get. We all should be as fortunate as you.

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  9. I laughed so hard while reading this that my husband had to come and interrogate me 😀 I’m still smiling (and believe me it hurts a lot after a dental surgery I had last week), but I can’t help myself. You’ve got such a unique voice, Ally, I love whatever you write about 🙂 I want to ask an embarrassing question as to what the procedure was, but I guess I’ll just google it :).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Gulara, sorry to make you laugh/happy to make you laugh. Don’t know which to say here. Glad you enjoyed this story, which was rather unusual, even by my standards. FYI: “Colonoscopy is a test that allows your doctor to look at the inner lining of your large intestine (rectum and colon). “

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh dear 🙂 how traumatic! Yes, you definitely don’t want someone grumpy to keep you company after something so invasive. The story maybe unusual, but your sense of humour is the best. Thank you!

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Although I concede that we don’t know the bad escort’s story, I’m leaning toward the doofus side. I’ve had unexpected medical escorts, like a colleague who came to the ER when I fell and then followed me to Rapid City, 140 miles away, and stayed until 11:00 that night when I was finally out of surgery and in a room. That’s a very kind escort. I had to forcibly send my escort home last spring since it was going to start snowing any minute and as it was she slid half the way home. But sometimes you are forced to use an escort who is not at all ideal. When I move I won’t know anyone, again, and figured I could just take a taxi but many hospitals are requiring not only someone to take and pick you up, but assurances that someone is home with you afterward.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Zaz, I don’t know the details [obviously] but this escort did not appear to want to do what he had said that he’d do. Had he not shouted out his question like he did, no one would have been the wiser, but he brought attention to himself and with it came instant judgement. Plus a good story. 😉

      In my experience the hospitals around here require you to have an escort for any outpatient procedure, plus you sign a form saying that you promise that someone will be with you at home for a period of time afterward. Don’t know if that is standard nationally or just the way they do things around here.

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  11. It could have been worse: he could have dropped off whoever he accompanied and gone to work. I’ve seen that a time or two. Maybe the facility could do away with wi-fi, because as long as it’s provided people will do stuff like that.

    There are days that I wake up and it’s 1986…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. John, I imagine that in many places people do that drop-off thing, but at this particular hospital that would never fly. There are rules + expectations… and for your cooperation you get free wi-fi! Which just might be the opiate of the masses! 😉

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  12. Laugh.Out.Loud!!!!
    My hubby had to have an emergency colonoscopy right after baby was born, so I was, sadly, not there to escort. When he was dropped off at home he craved bacon…and a cigarette…and to sit on our front porch…eating said bacon while smoking said yucky cig. Our neighbor was readying herself for a jog when out of NOWHERE my husband yells “HEY! Hey you! You want some bacon????” My saving grace was the earbuds she’d already put in her very tan little ears. It was so funny. Too funny. And in my husband’s defense…those drugs they gave him lasted far longer than anticipated. That neighbor swears she didn’t hear a word he said but I still giggle every time I see her start her run.😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. bitsfromheaven, it sounds like your husband went to a whole different realm after his procedure. How funny! I suppose everyone reacts to the drugs differently, but if I have a reaction I want a happy one like your husband’s. I can understand why you giggle when your neighbor runs. Considering, I would, too. 😉

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  13. That makes me mad/sad! I will never forget my last colonoscopy; Patt was determined to take me and stay with me, although he was really too sick to do so. I had been to so many of his appointments and procedures that I’m sure he wanted to give back to me in any way he could. Of course, Patt was a nice and loving guy, while that guy was a you-know-what(pick your favorite word for unpleasant person!)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Margaret, this was a weird situation. If this guy hadn’t been so loud and rude about not doing what was asked of him, no one would have been the wiser. I imagine that Patt enjoyed being your escort, despite how lousy he felt. Like you said, he was a nice and loving guy.

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    1. joey, considering how little is asked of the Colonoscopy Escort, then to balk at doing one little bit of it, this guy was in a world of his own making. Go figure.

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    1. Barbed Words, yes, you need an escort when you’re an outpatient being put under in a hospital.

      As escort, it’s not about what you want, it’s about what the patient wants. Which in this case was having this guy sit with the patient before the procedure. Not asking much, considering.

      Yet this guy didn’t want to do that which he’d agreed to do when he said he’d be an escort. I don’t know why he said he’d be an escort, but it doesn’t matter. He was there. It was his responsibility to do what needed to be done. *duh*

      Liked by 1 person

  14. My 86-year old mother refers to me as her Medical Secretary, which means I accompany her to ALL of her Medical Situations. ALL. Let me assure you that such a scenario would have NEVER occurred with me. I am on tenterhooks if I am left in a Waiting Area. At the risk of stereotyping, I can lightly suggest that part of this situation is Gender Wiring.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. nance, I’m with you. I would never think of doing anything that might impede the progress/comfort of the patient. I’ve wondered about the gender issue with this, too. Others have said the same thing. I also wonder if this guy has never been a patient in a hospital, so he has no idea how vulnerable you feel once you’re inside and checked-in. Or he could just be a doofus.

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    1. Stephanie, I think you’re right about him being a workaholic. He was absorbed in his computer, for sure. It was weird and I felt sorry for the person he was supposed to be helping.

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  15. Maybe the doofus had a good reason for staying put but there was no need to be so rude to the receptionist. I’m glad he’ll never be my colonoscopy escort!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Carol, my guess is that the guy didn’t really want to be an escort, and took out his frustration on the poor receptionist who was just delivering a message from the patient. I’m still worried about the patient who was left alone back in pre-op, waiting, anxious, with no one to distract them. That’d be a scary thing.

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  16. I didn’t read allllllll these comments, but did somebody already make the obvious joke about this guy really being a pain in the ass?

    I’m here all week, well, not here, but on my blog, and not all week…. but…. um….. 🙂 ~Tara

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