February 3, 2014
I was recently in the doctor’s office. No, not the waiting room, but this doctor’s private office. I sat across the desk from a fairly prominent cardiologist and talked about my health, etc. He was a pretty good guy and came across like he knew what he was talking about, and he better- it’s my heart we’re talking about. But before he came in I had a few minutes alone in the office and looked around. There were the usual degrees and diplomas on the wall, models and drawings of the human heart, reference books galore, all the stuff you’d expect. On his ornate desk, which was huge, were dozens of family photos. The doctor and his wife skiing, his kids sailing, the whole family on a tropical beach, etc, and pictures of them all with people I assume were celebrities but I honestly did not recognize.
But the pictures were all facing me.
Every picture faced the visitor, not the doctor. From where he was sitting, all he saw was the back of the frames. So obviously, these pictures were there for my benefit, not his. On my desk at work the pictures face me. I want to see them. They relax me, take me away from work for a few seconds. But the doctor’s pictures? I was supposed to be impressed by them.
Why? I don’t know, maybe it is simply the doctor’s ego. But do I want a doctor with a big ego? To a certain extent, yes. Not overly much, not overly confident, but I do want a doctor who has accomplished much and has a bit of an ego as opposed to a wishy-washy doctor who is in doubt of his diagnosis- especially in this case, when I was merely there as an insurance prerequisite.
If I have to look at his boring family vacation photos, then that’s the price I’ll pay.
What price won’t I pay?