The Story of a Slime

***

# 1 

Our THE clerk

In every medical college, there is at least one THE clerk. 

Almost unknown to Principals, Heads of Departments, and the rest of the non-medical world, this clerk manages and manipulates almost every “routine” aspect that keeps a medical college running: postings of medical students and interns in various clinical departments, issuing stipends to interns and paying patients for helping out during university exams, seeing to it that inspectors are happy with the paperworks, and most importantly, preparing marksheets of medical students from their internal exams and sending them to the University in time.

Some of THE clerks, if “motivated” in a way they fancy, will even get you any posting, signature or certificate. If THE clerk is daring enough, even a diploma certificate is gettable, without ever having to do the course. Seriously, yes!

Medical students and interns are the only breed that truly appreciate a THE clerk’s awesomeness.

***

This narrative is set in a little-known medical college in a dry and dusty, sparsely populated area in rural India. This college, too, had a THE clerk. Lets call him Slimy.

Slimy was a “localite”. He was 12th pass- perhaps the most qualified guy his village. In every part of rural India, being a “localite” gives huge leverage. It means you were born there, belong to that place. You are secure among members of your caste, religion, area, whatever. You know how to pull the strings. You perennially remind others that all the local politicians and their goons are your “brothers”. The brothers will do anything for you during election time, even though for the next five years, you may be as precious to them as a pesky pinworm.

Slimy had learnt the tricks of the trade over the years. His lack of “personality” in the conventional sense was never a barrier. Short statured, with his round build flaunting a proud beer belly; dressed in a way that made it clear that he didn’t consider personal hygiene worth a thought; and a mouthful of a deep red and gooey mash of tobacco with its typical stench. His pre-occupation with his piles were a running campus joke. With his somewhat pock-marked, constipated face flashing an all-weather sly grin, you intuitively knew he was one dirty, slippery fat pig.

Slimy was resentful of most medical students, since, he felt, if his father had a few crores to spare, he too could have become a doctor. His ultimate satisfaction usually came from bullying students of a certain “higher” caste and those who studied on merit seats. But to his credit, he was extremely efficient as far as keeping things moving was concerned. He knew his higher-ups’ ways of functioning well and was careful never to cross them wrong.

***

# 2 

Our three medical students

Lets call our unlikely hero Aay.

There was nothing noteworthy about Aay. Quiet. Unremarkable physique and looks. Average height. Dark-skinned, yes. He was born a nerd and met his inevitable fate in a medical college.

He kept to his books and out of people’s way, including the girl he secretly had begun to like.

The girl- lets call her Moi– was junior to Aay by a year. She, too, kept a low profile, was very studious and was among the toppers of her batch. She was seeing a guy, though. He was the Bully from Aay’s batch.

Bully was well built by body and blunt by intellect. Impulsive, brash, and in his own words, a “go-getter” and a “doer”. His parents were both doctors with roaring practices. He had been doled out a merit seat in medical college due to reasons other than academic merit.

Campus gossip frequently explored the mystery of how the sensible and good-looking Moi could fall for someone like Bully. Strangely, they got along well. On occasions, Bully used to get her expensive flowers and cheap pre-printed love cards carrying mushy-mushy, passionate one-liners. They went out on dates in his flashy car. Moi seemed to love the attention.

***

# 3 

Aay’s way of love 

Aay never opened up with anyone. He made a few friends, but they only spoke of academics. His “image” as a nerd meant he was never invited to parties, or sports events.

For Aay, happiness lay in his books and the occasional thought of Moi. Once or twice he thought of talking to her in the library, but he dismissed the idea. He could just never do it.

***

Aay had once seen a bunch of love cards fall out of Moi’s books as she left the library. She didn’t realise it. He picked them up and went through a few of them.

The first one read, “For our bestest frandship” in attempted floral italic font. Down below, “Your sincerest admirer, Bully” was scribbled. 

The next one, a much better looking card, read “I cherish each and every moment with you” in beautiful handwriting. It had no name or signature.

Aay realised that some cards were from Bully, and some were meant for Bully. He decided to keep them all. He felt guilty. But the ones from Moi would be his secret, and only treasure.

Once a week, in the privacy of his hostel room, his love-story would come to life. Moi and him were of the same caste, so there would have been no barriers to their marriage. With this thought he would start to gently go through her cards, and by the time he finished, he would be soaking in a harsh reality: she was already “booked”.

And each time, he would try to put an end to his little one-sided love story and try to get sleep.

***

# 4

year later… 

In his final year of studies, Aay’s grades in the internal exams dropped mysteriously. From high marks in the first two years, he was barely managing to get passing marks in internal exams now. Initially, he wondered, why.

He discovered the reason soon enough. It was common knowledge among the poor performers that one simply had to bribe Slimy- with money or liquor- and your marks would be “adjusted”. If you were of his caste, he would exempt you from the ritual. If you were of a particular religion which he despised, you could be in serious trouble.

In fact, the answer sheets of the internal exams were never checked by the teachers at all!

Slimy was the ultimate boss.

It irked Aay that wastrels who could hardly spell medical terms got top marks, while a few like him had to “compensate” by being failed to keep the averages believable in the eyes of the board; each year, one or two good students failed because they could not compensate for the low marks put by THE clerk in the internals during the final  board exams. At the same time, most of the wastrels passed, since their internal marks were high and hence they had to score that much lesser in the boards.

Slimy was the prime culprit.

Aay still said nothing. He continued to slog and made up for his deficiencies in the internals during the final board exams.

***

# 5 

Another year later… 

Aay was in internship now. He was a quiet workhorse. Long hours of sitting slouched while reading and working had begun to hurt his back. He started applying Leopard Balm, a popular pain-relief ointment, to keep going. He loved its strong, pungent smell and the hot, piercing, almost scalding sensation it gave on application. It was good at making him forget about his ache, and allowed him to go on with his mundane life.

Side by side, unknown even to himself, Aay had developed good rapport with the professors by his sheer inability to offend anybody at all.

***

Once, Aay, along with a small group of interns including Bully, was observing a professor at work in the out-patient clinic. Slimy came to get the latest mark list of Moi’s batch signed by the Professor. Aay peeped into the list.

As expected, Moi was given borderline marks.

Aay decided to speak. He started tentatively.

“Sir, there seems to be some problem with the marks. This girl is a good student”. He pointed at her name in the list. “She has never scored below distinction before. But in this list she is barely passed. Err… could the papers be rechecked?”.

The surprised crowd looked at Aay and the professor. It was a bit difficult to believe that they were actually witnessing Aay take a potentially troublesome stand.

The professor looked at Aay and Slimy. He looked unsure of what to say. For years, he had never checked a paper. Slimy simply used to keep the marklist in front of him, and he simply used to sign.

“Slimy, what is this intern telling? Aren’t the marks fair?” The Professor looked at Slimy disinterestedly.

Bully, uncomfortable with the idea of gossip spreading of how Aay saved Moi, jumped into the fray for his share of spotlight. “Sir, he always does this. He takes bribes and puts marks. He also pockets half of our internship stipends, else we won’t get our posting completion certificates.”

Wham! Bam! Round one to Bully.

There was pin-drop silence. Slimy was red hot in the face and glared viciously at Bully. Any moment now, he would spray him with tobacco spit. Just last year Bully had bribed him to get passing marks, and now in return, for the sake of a girl, he had stripped him in public.

Fortunately, the professor spoke immediately. “Slimy, put the marks in fair order”.

“Sir, this time’s marks are already sent to the University. As you know, these marks are for the next exams. I’ll get back to you later.”

He didn’t give anyone a chance to respond. He immediately picked up the marksheets, turned over and walked away, leaving behind an embarrassed professor and a stunned crowd.

Jab. Round two to Slimy.

***

Bully and his small gang cornered Aay in a secluded corridor later that day. “Stay away from her. Don’t try to be a hero. Or else…”

To Bully’s disappointment, Aay seemed to have no inclination to put up a fight.

They let him go.

Shove! Round three to Bully. 

***

Slimy was restless throughout the day. No one had questioned him all these years. Bully had recklessly exposed his modus operandi, seriously dented his income and shredded his “image”.

No one pricked him and got away. He would have to give it back.

The next day, Slimy went and sat opposite Bully in the crowded canteen. Several heads turned around to watch. Slimy wanted them to.

Bully straightened his posture defiantly. Slimy grinned menacingly. Coolly, he asked Bully, “Did you feel your ass burning when I put low marks for her? Control your passion, kid! What can you do anyway? Don’t be a hero, or else… ” He got up, leaned over the table and got his spit-filled mouth very close to Bully’s confused face, poked a fat finger into his chest, and unleashed a torrent of expletives and tobacco spray.

Bully tried to retaliate, but could not match Slimy for long and went silent.

Everyone saw.

Slimy assumed that Bully got the message, loud and clear. He exited the place with a proud swagger. After a minute, Bully gathered his wits and  wiped his face clean.

***

For the next several weeks, all campus gossips unanimously agreed on one point- DON’T MESS WITH SLIMY.

Dhishoom! Round four to Slimy. 

***

# 6

few months later, on a good day…

Aay was nearing the completion of his internship. He was now posted in Surgery.

Today, Aay was on cloud nine. Moi’s student posting was also in Surgery. She would be attending a two-hour class on piles by the Professor of Surgery. Aay would get to see her for two full hours and drool.

When he reached the lecture hall, Aay’s joy was cut short a little. Slimy was there, too. It was well known that though he understood little of medicine, he listened to as many classes on piles as he could. The Professors used to keep samples of creams used to relieve piles in their cabinets, to be given to poor patients. Frequent disappearances of those creams were attributed to Slimy.

The class started. Aay was already lost in his own world, watching her from a distance.

The professor’s voice seemed to come on and off. “Today’s topic is hemorrhoides and we will look into the practical aspects of managing…”

The minutes passed. Aay was still lost, only disturbed by the Professor’s sudden rise in tone once in a while.

“This is a single-use tube of the cream. Obviously it means you throw it into the dustbin after it is used once”. The Professor was holding the tube up for the rapt class to see, his chest swelling with pride at his attempted joke. Some eager students nodded their heads understandingly. “The cream should be applied around the anus before defecation… to the tube one can attach the applicator, which is a thin, long, tapering nozzle as you see here. One can insert the applicator inside through the anus and squeeze the tube, so that the area as well as the insides are well lubricated…. reduces the strain during defecation, eases the discomfort, reduces chances of bleeding and… ”

Two hours passed. Aay was disappointed that the class got over too soon. He watched as Moi gracefully drifted out of the class.

Aay sat there for a few moments. He pitied himself for being incurably passive. He spent a few more minutes in thought, and rushed out of the room to get on with work.

***

# 7

month later… 

Aay was nearing the completion of his internship.

One day during lunch, the whole canteen was excitedly discussing a “hot” development. The tiff between Bully and Slimy had got out of hand. In order to teach him a lesson, Slimy had decided not to forward Bully’s posting completion certificates for signature from the Head of Department. An enraged Bully had barged into his office that morning. Those who witnessed the scene said Bully had started off with “humble” requests, but Slimy turned abusive first. Things quickly got out of hand with unmentionable expletives getting louder and louder from both sides. Then they grabbed each other’s collars. Bully managed to crash a punch into Slimy’s face. It was difficult to say whether he broke his jaw, because no one could say for sure whether it was blood or tobacco spit that spew out. The crowd managed to prise them apart with great difficulty. A stuporous Slimy was carried away to the casualty. He spent the rest of the morning screaming and cursing there.

Bully was now staring at serious disciplinary action. He would be suspended for at least a few months.

And things did move ahead for him on expected lines.

***

# 8 

Ten years later… 

Aay, Moi and their batch were forgotten in the college now. Bully’s name was legend though, for he had carried out the wish of a large number of medical students a decade ago, and how!

Right now, they were all leading their lives happily, busy in their own practices, with their children and spouses.

***

Aay had a routine day at work today. Tonight he would be taking his family out for a special dinner. It would be ten years to this day today since that historic showdown between Bully and Slimy happened. He rocked back in his chair. His thoughts flew back to the day things changed for each of them.

Immediately after that class in Surgery, Aay had spent a few moments in deep thought. On an impulse, he got up and rushed. To the Professor’s office. It would be empty now, since the Professor would be in the operation theatre. 

When Aay reached, the office door was slightly open. Through the crack, he saw Slimy hurriedly scavenging through the stock of creams that were in the Professor’s glass cabinet. In a few seconds, he found a small carton with “piles” printed on it. Spotting that word was enough for him, for that word was all that he understood and mattered to him. He emptied the carton. There was a tube of cream and an applicator. He re-checked the contents, the word “piles” on the tube as well as the carton, put the tube and the applicator into his pocket, the empty carton into the dustbin, and hurriedly out of the room, oblivious to Aay’s presence in the corridor.

Aay got into the room immediately. He walked to the cabinet. It was not locked. Good. He opened it and easily found another set of the same cream that Slimy had just stolen. He smiled. The plan was on.

Aay took the tube back to his room. He would have to wait till the weekend for privacy.

The next Sunday afternoon, things were calm.

Aay took out the tube and got into a washroom. He carefully emptied its contents into the closet, careful not to crumple the tube. He came back to his room, took out a brand new jar of Leopard balm, and kept it in a tumbler of warm water to liquefy it a bit. After a short wait, he filled a 20 cc syringe with the semi-liquid balm. He then carefully put the syringe to the nozzle of the tube, and pushed gently. When the tube was refilled, it looked almost like new. No one would suspect a thing. He prayed Slimy wasn’t smart enough to notice the tampering.

The next day, when Slimy was out of office, Aay went in, took out the tube, rubbed it all over with a cloth to erase fingerprints (just in case), and placed it in his drawer, along with the applicator, on top of all the files and papers.

For the first time in his life, Aay would discreetly keep his ears open for campus gossip, for any related news.

***

The next week, news spread that Slimy had taken three days off, sick. When he rejoined, his face was puffy. His eyes were red and he looked really, really worried. Scared, rather. It looked as if he had been crying through hell. He walked and sat awkwardly with a bit of discomfort, leaving no one in the campus in doubt as to where and how deep his problem lay. It was clear that this time it was something very serious and unusual. But only Slimy would know what really happened.

The next afternoon, Aay sneaked into his office once again. From his pocket, he took out one of Bully’s cheap love cards to Moi. He placed it on Slimy’s table and walked out.

***

When Slimy entered his office after a while, what he saw on his table threw him into a fit of uncontrollable rage. His scream was reflexive.

It was a card with a message in floral italics:

“My dear,

Is this how the burning fire of passion feels?”

It was signed:
Same with me here, 
Bully.

***

Slimy did everything he could to “teach Bully a lesson”. He refused to get his completion certificate signed citing one reason or another. 

Finally Bully lost patience and confronted Slimy directly in his office. When Slimy accused Bully of having made his life hell, Bully refused to be held responsible. Slimy then took out Bully’s love card and demanded that he admit his crime. A stunned Bully refused. Things worsened. Expletives. Fisticuffs. The punch. The crowd separating them. In the melee, Bully managed to wrest out the card from Slimy’s clenched fist.

Bully was not bothered about the action that would be taken on him by the college authorities. After all, he was from an influential family, of a particularly advantageous caste, and rich. There was a good chance that he could get away with only minor scratches.

But first, he had to see Moi.

Moi was shocked at Bully’s behaviour. She never imagined he would be so aggressive and physical. He demanded to know what she had done to Slimy, to him, and why she had done so. She, too, refused to be held responsible for the mess. Driven by disbelief and blind rage, Bully hit her and left her to cry for a week.

Bully and Moi broke off the following week. They went their separate ways in life.

***

The dust settled over the next few months. Over the next few years, they would all get married to people their parents chose for them. Moi would go on to specialise in Family Medicine (what she called “a beautiful specialty for beautiful people”), Bully would be a Hospital administrator, and Aay would specialise in Radiology.

It was heard that Slimy was very careful while making students’ marksheets for internal exams for the next couple of years. Once convinced that there was no one to challenge his actions among the next generation of students, he eased into his filthy old ways.

***

# 9 

The present moment

It was dinner time in the resort that Aay had promised to take his family to. He was relaxing in a cozily cushioned cane chair. A few feet away, his wife was playing ball with their beautiful daughters, now aged 7 and 4. It made him feel so happy to see them.

The waiter came to take the order.

“I’ll start off with a soup”, said Aay. “Some French fries for the kids”. He raised his voice and called out to his wife, “And what would you like to order, Moi?”

*** 

Final Round: Aay wins by knock-out.
“The story of a slime”

 

Posted in General, Humor/Satire | 4 Comments

Satire: Indian Cricket Team Banned from Using Fairness Creams to Avoid Series Whitewash

Taking a decisive measure to avoid a heart-breaking series whitewash, Team India Director Ravi Shastri has banned Indian cricketers from using fairness-oriented creams or even appearing in their ads.

“We conducted an internal investigation into the reasons that have led to our impending whitewash in this series, in spite of the Sharmas, Kohlis and co. putting up tremendous and inspiring performances. The answer, obviously, lies in the bowling. Our team psychologist has come up with this brilliant theory after in-depth statistical analysis of why India never got a durable fast bowler after Kapil and Srinath. As per his theory, Manoj Prabhakar was among the first prominent Indian cricketers to turn up with a heavy smattering of sunscreen on his face. We all know which way he steadily spiraled  and ultimately had his career white-washed. We are not sure whether this theory makes sense or not, but we are taking no chances. This time, we’ll literally do just what the doctor has ordered” he thundered.

This correspondent caught up with vice-captain Virat Kohli for his views. It was difficult to judge whether he was just behaving normally or was in delirium, since he was screaming out expletives non-stop, only pausing to breathe in once in two minutes.

“MC$&Q^*$&^Q……. BC#!*$#…….!! All fairness creams and sunscreens profess that your confidence and career shoots up by using them. I do appear in those ads, but tell me, does anyone with brains take them seriously? Yet our bowlers have been using them for years. I suspect poor Stuart Binny had even tried eating a spoonful a day when applying it didn’t work. No wonder we get pasted. Rohit stopped bothering about his looks and creams after he got married, and now he’s hitting centuries. The psychologist’s theory seems to be spot-on!” he screamed.

The most cerebral among contemporary commentators, the legendary VVS Laxman, agreed with the sunscreen theory, but not with the bad-luck-based reasoning behind it. “You see, it seems more of a scientific reason to it. Fairness creams and sunscreens prevent the UV rays of the sunlight from falling on the skin. This makes the skin unable to produce sufficient vitamin-D. Vitamin-D is vital for calcium to work properly in the body. Thus, such creams may be adversely affecting the bone and muscle strength of our fast bowlers. This may be one of the reasons for their diminishing pace once they start playing for the senior team, and frequent injuries, and short careers. If you look more closely, IPL matches are played mostly at night, where they don’t have to use such creams, and their pace picks up consistently into the high 140’s. Additionally, the whole IPL season is always injury-free”, Laxman reasoned.

Meanwhile, whispers are rising about MS Dhoni. A faction of Indian cricketers, known for their superstitions, , were spotted extremely worried, huddled in a discussion. One of them turned around and revealed: “We’ve taken the day off practice to discuss the repercussions of our captain appearing in that T-20 World Cup ad with a totally 100% ghostly white-washed lady. With him refusing to wear his talismanic long hair, chances are looking paler for us in this year’s T-20 World cup. Let’s hope that lady luck will be with us, just like she was once with the legendary Joginder Sharma.

Posted in Humor/Satire | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

(Satire) 2013: Govt Launches “One Doctor in Every Family” scheme.

Asanshol, 29th Feb 2013:

In a move that stinks of genius, some politicians are coming up with a brilliant idea to tackle all medical-related issues plaguing the country: forcing open a Medical College in every district. Not to let go of this opportunity to extort votes, a southern, highly progressive state has already made reckless decisive moves to implement this asap.

Mr Ediopathy Godbharose, a health ministry insider, gave us this free-wheeling interview over a couple of pegs.

Q. Sir, we heard that…

(1st peg) Yes, we are launching the ‘One MBBS Doctor in Every Family’ scheme.

You see, the country sorely needs doctors.  Though educated people say that 50,000 doctors are being added to the current mess of lakhs of unemployed doctors each year, we insist that the country will be perpetual medical crises due to shortage of hands. That is because most of the doctors are selfish and are only interested in studying higher and higher and higher and higher, say, till the age of 40 or 45 at least. Can you believe it?! The self-centered chaps prefer to sit and study!

So if we have a Medical College in all the districts, we expect these areas to be robustly staffed, even if the medical colleges and facilities are only on paper.

Q. About the trend of the public attacking doctors in spite of it being no fault of theirs- will opening more medical colleges cure this trend?

(2nd peg) Yes, definitely. The attacks are due to a lack of understanding within the public into what goes into the the making of a doctor and their noble intentions.

With the one-doctor-per-family norm, we expect to nurture this awareness among them. The person undergoing the medical training will sensitise his family to the inhuman rigors that a medical student goes through. Later on, when the family realises that the doctor among them is hopelessly substandard- in spite of the extreme hard work by their own child- their expectations from better doctors will also come down automatically.

This ’empathisation’ will decrease the incidence of doctors being butchered every now and then.

Q. Is there any guarantee this plot will work?

(3rd peg, slurs) Yes, there is proven precedence.

Years ago, we had embarked on a “One-Engineer-per-family” programme. There was a boom in private engineering colleges. The result is, now every family in the country has a mobile phone and a vehicle. Looking ahead, we’re sure they’ll soon develop a way to get  drinking water and two square meals a day.

Similarly, our “one-MBA-per-family” programme has also given us great returns. As a  result of our private centers doling out MBAs, even clerks in banks and cashiers in shopping malls are MBAs now.

I remember when I had dropped out of school after standard 4th, the BPL rate was at a mind-numbing 32.420 percent. Now after 2 decades, the BPL rate is only 31.840 percent.

No one goes hungry because our people know how to sell and buy a full meal for just 5 bucks all over the country.

[Neta-speech mode ON:] “With a Doctor in every family, we will soon see an extremely health-efficient India. No one will get sick. No one will die anymore. In case anyone even sneezes, the doctor from that family will be tried under strict draconian laws. No one will escape the law, unlike political progeny and spoilt Follywood bigshots.

Imagine this- when MBBS doctors will be employed as consultant sweepers and consultant  watchmen, the hygiene and hospitals’ security-related services will be top-notch in no time! Obviously, thousands of jobs will be created. The economy will boom, and fiscal deficit will come down. We will be a super-power (hic)!

Q. Why not open new colleges for alternative medicine?

(4th peg, slurrrs) (Smiles) I’m glad you caught that. That’s where our brilliance really comes in.

Though a few alternative medicine practitioners are respectably true to their pathy, several lobbies from these streams are pushing hard for “rights” to prescribe allopathic medicines after they pass their whatever courses. In any case, several among them are illegally prescribing allopathy medicines only, with zilch idea of what works or their risks.

Simply by legalising their illegal practices, they can mint serve in peace and keep our share coming. And with our decision to open only allopathy colleges, these minor niggles and ego clashes will be totally avoided in the first place. It’s an awesome strategy.

We will take maximum efforts to ensure that prescriptions from all doctors across the country should be uniformly disgusting.

Q. How and where will these doctors do specialisation courses?

(5th peg, sllluuurrrrs) We have started PG courses in almost every Private Medical College.

You see, we’ve kept the Government colleges out of this PG seat mess. The private seats are auctioned off for rates between 1-4 crores. It is an exploding market already. With thousands of more doctors coming up from the Govt side, the demands for our sale-able PG seats is bound to shoot through the roof. The resultant haggling will enhance the income and job-opportunities of our starving politicians who will get higher shares from the business. We already have let loose hundreds of committed brokers all over the country to facilitate  the processes.

Q. Sir, why not train existing doctors in delivering decent, safe primary care?

There’s little money in it. The private PG seats won’t sell. Common man will get cheap healthcare. We’ll lose money  (Angrily) The need of the hour is cardiac surgeons, cardiac surgeons and cardiac surgeons. Not doctors who prevent cardiac deaths. Get your basics right!

Q. Several of the medical colleges across the country being barely staffed and hopelessly defunct . Even the public knows this and avoids them.
(6th peg) (Slurr….rrr…hic….rrs) No comments.

(His well-trained PA takes out a sticker resembling a 1000 currency note, presumably to stick over his boss’s mouth, in case he looks he’ll reveal anything further).

Q. Are the Medical Associations happy with this?
(Last sip) (Slurrrrr……hic, hic, almost dozing off)

They have no choice. Like any well meaning group of individuals would do, most doctors are protesting regarding the quality of teaching and infrastructure in our co-called tin roofed colleges, but thankfully at present, they have no voice.

And for those who make some noise- we are considering various ways to silence them. Its easy to gag Doctors’ freedom of speech!

But soon, with doctors teeming like flies, these bloody nerds will soon be an influential minority vote bank. Then we’ll consider whether they’re worth listening to….

Q. Er..Sir, before you pass out we sign off: Coming back to a previous question- what about the current bunch of doctors without decent work or any pay?

(Snores).

***

And that is how, my dears, major decisions are made!
Jai Ho!:-)

Disclaimer: This is satire. This is an imaginary, cooked up story, based on a few news articles, though the news articles are presumably based on facts. They have been fairly acknowledged in the embedded links. No disrespect intended. Any further resemblance to real life happenings is co-incidental.

Any of the above &%#$ turning out to be true in future may also be considered entirely co-incidental. The author will deny any allegations of being a clairvoyant in case they come up 🙂

Posted in Humor/Satire, Medical Policies, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Satire: New Year Bonanza! Newspapers to be free in 2016, say “we mint enough from ads anyway”.

In a development that smacks of the impending good times, leading newspapers in the country have announced that readers won’t have to pay for them anymore.

“Yes, its true”, revealed Mr Fulpej Adkar, Director (Marketing), The Achche Times of India. “After years of intense efforts and deliberations, our team has worked out the math. Let me explain: We boast a circulation of 2 million. With each paper costing 2 rupees, the revenue generated is Rs 4 million. 4 million sounds huge and fancy, but simply put in common Indian words, it is only 40 lakh rupees. Not so huge- that is the rate for carrying just 4 quarter-page ads in our paper. So if we simply add in 5 more ads a day, we’ll be sitting on higher profits, and our customers can be relieved of the burden of yearly newspaper subscriptions.”

The aam aadmi is upbeat about the ‘free’dom. We caught up with a few commuters in Mumbai’s local trains. Mr. Janbaaz Thakele, a regular, said: “Yes, it’s great! See, almost every newspaper has got a full-page ad on both sides of page 1. When you open it, the humiliating farce that is page 2 is one-fourth of the size of the other pages and is also exclusively dedicated to ads. The actual news only starts by the 3rd page. Because of such foolishness in design, the penultimate page of the newspaper keeps sliding out while holding it wide open. It was getting difficult to manage the pages in our jam-packed commuting conditions. Forget that, even while sitting comfortably in my armchair at home, its difficult to turn the pages without making a mess. With newspapers putting in more ads, page 2 can also be upgraded to a full size ads-only page, thus balancing the dynamics of handling the paper. Our life will be much easier. In any case, we are experts in scavenging for news items hidden among the ads by now. And of course, in these times, the saving of 700-800 rupees a year is a welcome gift”. Mr. Thakele’s fellow train commuters, nearly crushing each other during peak rush hours, nodded their heads in full agreement.

A few news editors were in a philosophical mood when contacted. Mr. Presit Tute, Cheap Chief Editor of a leading tabloid, slurred over his evening pegs: “We were beginning to feel ashamed of our ways. As it is, our definition of news is ‘print anything that sells, authenticity not a must‘. With 87.2586 percent of our tabloid’s area splattered with ads, ranging from quack remedies to astrologers to 1800-I’m-a-lonely-wife-please-call-me numbers, our team was beginning to wonder how long our readers would keep tolerating our sh**. And the suckers readers even paid for it! Its feels good that we’re making an effort to clean us up simply by putting in more ads. Tonight I can sleep well.”

The goodies for 2016 may not end here. Television channels seem to be next in line. “Yeah, it’s amazing that viewers actually pay us for seeing our ads slithering across 25% of their screens 24 X 7, even in addition to the 15-20 minutes per hour of dedicated ad times. Thankfully so far, no one has thought that it should be the viewer who deserves to get paid for enduring such torture. But now that people are getting wiser, we may make our basic services free, too”, said Mr Bigesht Chaloo, CEO, Chee News.

The “free basic media” seems to be the next big hit on social media, with a large number of armchair internet activists hailing the decision and voicing their opinions, using the term #basicshitfreemedia.

***

Jai Ho! 🙂

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2015: A historic, exciting and truly memorable year for Family Medicine in India.

Source: 2015: A historic, exciting and truly memorable year for Family Medicine in India.

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2015: A historic, exciting and truly memorable year for Family Medicine in India.

My dear fellow journeymen,

2015 was an awesome year for FM in India. The year took off with the memorable Kerala state conference in Calicut in the 1st week of Jan itself, followed by an unprecedented number of state Conferences and CMEs, subsequent creation of several state chapters (not simply created, most of them are actually active).

And who can ever forget the truly memorable Karanataka state conference! These meets turned out to be extremely popular; even trend-setting events for those who attended them.

And of course, the National conference in Delhi (FMPC 2015), with the active involvement of the Health Ministry itself, was the icing on the cake of exciting FM events!

Passing rates for the DNB(FM), conducted by the very demanding, strict and uncompromising NBE have been the best in the history of FM (probably any specialty) in 2015. It speaks volumes about the increasing numbers of accomplished guides in the specialty, and of course, students pursuing this commitment-heavy specialty by CHOICE, which, in turn, raised the interest in the subject, translating into better pass rates and career success.

2015 saw the emergence of new and exciting leaders for FM- among practitioners, student leaders and even advocates from conventional specialists, from grassroot practitioners, the general public and surprise, surprise- the usually antagonistic mainstream media!

The networking among FM specialists, both within India, and from Indians to all across the world, is getting wider, the interpersonal bonds and trust getting stronger, reliable and more productive with each month and every conference that is conducted. Every such interaction is almost a milestone in professional and personal growth- with no exaggeration here.

The National Board of Examinations (God Bless them for their noble intentions and support, for no one else in the medical education field really seems to bother about anything other than cash, cash, cash) started regular student and faculty development programmes for FM, offering unconditional support at every step.

The RCGP, WONCA, all have been assisting us in the works.

Things have never been better for FM in India. The buzz, the vibes, every good voice and feel about FM was growing louder and more positive than ever.

In 2016, we are looking up to even higher goals. It promises to be exciting.

Sometime, sooner or later, we hope that FM is able to reach each and every Indian, keeping people healthy, preventing illness, bring down cost of disease very heavily, and protect and prevent people from falling prey to unscrupulous elements within the medical field. The onus is on us.

Sooner rather than later, each and every Indian should be feeling secure and proud of his or her trusted family doctor. Lets hope the Government continues its support- which will surely happen if they are genuinely working in the interest of the people.

Miles to go before we sleep.
But the journey continues to be exciting and promising and satisfying.

Best wishes
Welcome 2016, and be good to us like your predecessor 🙂 And while we are at it, don’t miss the Tamil Nadu state event (CMC Vellore), planned in the middle of this year.

Lets all wish ourselves a great 2016!
Dr Bijayraj R
President-elect, AFPI-Kerala Chapter.

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Satire: Quacks jump on to “rising intolerance” bandwagon, say “its a medical fact”

Asansol, 29th Feb 2015

In a major boost to the “rising intolerance” movement, several quack practitioners  in the country have stood up in support. This correspondent caught up with Dr. Jackup Northy, the wiliest quack in the country . The sexagenarian quack seemed to be in a pensive mood, but he did spill some beans.

“Well, you s-see” said Dr Jackup, amidst stutters and uncharacteristically thoughtful pauses. “I stopped following mainstream news since the last few years. It helps keep me…(pause)… rooted in the 1980’s. My practice is still going strong, though. Recently, I had a young, newly married couple who consulted me with the concern that the husband suffered from ‘rising intolerance’. I was clueless for a moment, but a few questions later, I realized that they actually meant a common medical problem- what those legally qualified doctors call erectile dysfunction. I gave them my usual ‘totally-safe-magic-herbal-remedy-free-of-side-effects’ which is basically…(pause)…crushed Viagra. The poor suckers fell for it and paid a bomb, but are happy now.

“I decided to explore the new fad. My failing eyesight doesn’t allow me to read much now-a-days, but I could make out from today’s newspaper headlines that prominent… (pause)…intellectuals in the medical field such as Mr Amir Khan and social super-intellectuals such as Mr Rahul Gandhi are working relentlessly to create awareness about this oft-neglected, and often fully curable, medical condition. Its heartening to see such… (pause)… bright youngsters with creative ideas coin and use the euphemistic phrase, instead of scary medical jargon. They are so open and bold about such problems these days!

“But I am also a bit amused to read about some couples wanting to permanently move out of our country due to such…er… (pause) private issues. Now that’s taking things a bit too far. I’d rather suggest them to try a short vacation. Maybe, Bang…(pause)… Bang…galore or Bang…(pause)…kok instead.

Ironically, voices of “rising intolerance” have gone silent due to such helpful clarifications and voices of support. This reporter tried to contact several big names who had been vehemently complaining of ‘rising intolerance’ over the last full year. To our surprise, in spite of strong, irrefutable proof and even offers of free help from the real scientific community, every single one of them claimed to have been misquoted, denied having ever uttered the phrase, or anything to do with it.

***
Jai Ho!! 🙂

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