Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Friggin' Looney Tunes  

Just a quick one tonight.

Had a list of things to do but before I knew it, I looked up and the day had slipped away.

Le sigh.

Anyway, a quick observation: My "day job" frequently takes me into mental health wards and psychiatric inpatient units. A lot of the staff there are fine, but there's always a certain percentage that seem like they're patients wearing stolen lab coats.

Case in point, one particular staff person tonight was completely irate that I had shown up for work about 20 minutes early. That's right, early.

When i got there, I asked if the staff person was ready for the appointment , but instead of a simple yes or no, this person took the opportunity to launch into a tirade and berate me for not calling ahead. Keep in mind, I'm not going to someone's house for a social call... this is a scheduled professional appointment in a clinical facility.

I explained that I had just happened to be done with my previous appointment early and thought maybe we could all go home a little sooner if the gig was done ahead of schedule. (It was friggin' Christmas Day, after all.) I went on to apologize for any inconvenience, and said that I could easily come back in 20 minutes at the originally scheduled time. Was this good enough? Of course not.

This person then made a point of saying that they could have been doing something... or could have been on the phone when I arrived, like I'd somehow interrupt their ability to do anything while I was in the building. They went on to reiterate that it was just bad manners to arrive somewhere early without calling ahead, regardless of the fact that they knew I'd be there in 20 minutes anyway and there are an infinite number of spots for people to sit and read a magazine.

I mean, it would be one thing if I was popping up unexpectedly on someone's front porch, or if I came to pick up a date while she was still putting on makeup, but unless I'm way off base, isn't the logical, sane response just to say that you aren't ready and then let the person wait?

I didn't really see the point of this person going off on me, but I pride myself on being professional and didn't want to make a scene, so I just apologized again and took it while I bit down on my tongue and cursed the staff person silently.

The really messed-up part? This same person was telling me just last week that they wished I could show up a little earlier for the next appointment.

No joke.

So, mental health staff and mental health patients... birds of a feather?

I think perhaps.

What next?

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1 comments: to “ Friggin' Looney Tunes

  • Anonymous


    Seems like we both spent Christmas dealing with loonies. In my case, I had a row with an immigrations officer at Philippine international airport. See my blog post: Christmas Here and There.

    They make you less optimistic about the human race, don't they?