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Wednesday, March 29, 2006


It is not everyday that a body that has retained its inherent imperfections for long years is subject to the ravages of a medical team with an intent to probe, prick and pierce, albeit with nobility at heart and an urge to heal.
I have always hated hospitals, the sound that metallic pages make as they are flicked by at the Medical Register, the I’ve –seen-it-all-just-follow-me-you-petrified-oaf mien of the nurses and staff, the clinical precision of the specialists and doctors-the Hippocratic version of the Efficient Baxters, and the glassy stares of fellow co-passengers , oops co-sufferers , have ensured that hospitals aren’t nice places to visit.

All this inspite of the fact that my father has spent over three decades in these vile spots, and the little one is well on her way to the same.

Not an auspicious beginning, the previous day spent pontificating in a full-day (t)raining programme, and the one before that spent in spoiling the Sunday of several other innocent gentry vide hosting a quiz ( details later ). Some arcane law of Physics, the Father decide to pull out of the anesthesiologist’s role—he doesn’t treat family in an operation, leaving me with one outstanding ENT surgeon and a chatty and warm anesthesiologist.
The nurse cheerfully informed me that my left dorsum was invitingly vein-laden and hence would be the willing recipient of a tube that would convey all necessary chemical effluvia to the rest of the body. Preempting my sigh of relief as having restricted damages to this, she then proceeded to poke another needle into my right wrist, all to check for allergy, and my usually glib answer as my only allergy I had was towards work, barely made it past my lips.

Surgery itself wasn’t that tough but the sedation I received saw to it that my inclination to stay in a horizontal pos. lasted through the day, and that my incessant jabbering was as cogent as most well-wishers say it usually is—speech defects, solecisms and all. So an eventful day, my first experience of going under the knife, and I cannot remember an instance when all I had during a full day’s play were three Marie biscuits and about sixty ml of water.
I plan to make the most of my enforced period of rest and gladly lap up the ministrations of my gran, uncle and aunt too.

It’s a sobering thought but the World appears to have gotten by perfectly well in my absence.


Monday, March 13, 2006


There are many emotions that familiarity over long periods can help abate, with a growing fondness quelling the more prosaic components of even frigid and rational relationships. It is usually the case that serial offenders rely wholly on this very intimacy to abase and suborn the relationship that they have lost interest in or passed over.

The most visible airline over the last few years has now set a record. For me, it is now precisely fifty, that is five zero, successive times that the stipulated arrival times have not been met. While this might represent a wee minuscule portion of all the journeys undertaken, for an individual they embody all the travel attempted. And hence, it does appear a little more significant, more substantial.

There still might be a case for misplaced clemency in the above set of errant schedules, although if one were to compute and monetize the collective time lost on account of delayed flights, instant rescission might ensue. But what excoriates and exacerbates is that the airline seems to have mastered the fine art of combining two flights without announcement. The modus operandi appears to be this—Do not make an announcement till well after departure time, then proclaim a delay due to “late arrival” of aircraft ( as if this itself were force majeure !) , then shepherd and placate the mulling passengers before letting the craft take off after the passengers for the next flight join the first lot.
The key point is under no circumstance draw attention to the fact that even a toddler were to tot up the number of flights for any one day, he would find one entire flight missing. This rather pathetic ploy is laid bare by the fact that after all the passengers have boarded, there is no apology for the delay. Hence the crafty ( sic) crooks save on air turbine fuel or whatever beverage the rickety contraption runs on which on last count is not something to scoff at. Not to mention the moolah that they are required to fork out for use of the runway and hangar space.

This is chicanery, sharp practice—and we thought the era of corporate cheating had ended with all the zations !!!


Thursday, March 09, 2006


The entire community of resident doctors represented by the Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors ( MARD) is on an indefinite strike.

They have raised demands along three lines: security of the resident doctors ( a concern borne out of repeated assaults on doctors, even ladies by unreasonable relatives ) , improvement in working and living conditions and a hike in the stipend ( which as of now is Rs. 8000 per month)

The mainstream media has chosen to highlight the more newsworthy elements of the affair—ailing patients, irate Government officials and the reactions of various luminaries. A few have carried the opinions and entreaties of those on strike, and some radio channels have interviewed the resident doctor representatives who have expressed an unwillingness to back down this time and their need to have their demands agreed to in writing.

The intention of these doctors was never to cause harm to the public, a fact demonstrated by their opening a parallel OPD and running it at risk for the last few days.

MARD has also staged protest marches, signature campaigns and organized other peaceful means of resistance, and have indicated a desire to continue with the strike till their demands are met.

Resident doctors from other states have joined in, and they have received various forms of approval and support from relevant professional bodies.

Their site is at http://www.mardtoday.bravehost.com/ and they need every bit of your support right now.


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