Thursday, 26 February 2015

The Daily Beast

I have a doppelganger.

Someone on The Daily Beast is masquerading as me and using the name "DocBastard" to write a column.  He sounds like me, his opinions seem to be exactly the same as mine, and he even looks like me.

Before anyone mentions anything about it, my editor changed the British English spellings to the American English spellings.  Because she's, you know, American.

So this is my first paying job as a writer.  I'll be a regular contributor over there at DB.  Yes, I'm actually getting paid for it, which is more than I can say for this place, where all I earn is your undying and everlasting adoration.

Heh . . . I have an editor.

30 comments:

  1. My undying and everlasting adoration is priceless.

    Seriously, congrats on the new gig! ;)

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  2. It's about time! Congrats

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  3. The comments... oh, the comments. Why did I read them? I just pulled out half of my hair...

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  4. Congrats Doc! I will be sure to check out your posts.

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  5. Oh so sweet. Congratulations doctor!

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  6. You're a twit if you want people to turn to you on their death's door instead of some continuing education behind how to improve lifestyle on their part.

    and who here is "trying to be cool" ? the author is a total prat - what does googling women have to do with anything.. A garbage first publication good luck with your future career in writing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The only garbage I see here is your grammar :)

      Delete
    2. Oh good, I have a troll. An antivax troll based on your comment on the previous post.

      This should be fun. I hope you stick around and continue commenting.

      Delete
  7. well, congratulations on the new gig.

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  8. Firm erections for everyone!

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    Replies
    1. First time commenter, but may I just say, on behalf of all of us, please stop.

      Delete
    2. I apologise in advance to the anon commenter with the erectile issues, but I must agree.

      Delete
  9. Congratulations. I'm a faithful reader. Your blog has provided much enjoyment and some new insight. I really appreciate your work and I'm happy to see you find a larger audience.

    I read your Daily Beast article and the comments. Here are a few thoughts.

    1. You have no history with that audience. Here, over time, you have shown us that you have compassion, humor, medical expertise and a wry take on human nature. If that article had been the only thing I had ever read, I wouldn't have seen any of that except perhaps medical skill.

    2. I'm very much with you on the vaccine issue, but I don't blame people for being skeptical and scared. We have a long history of being lied to about real dangers. See e.g. tobacco. The medical and pharmaceutical industries produced and actively concealed evidence re thalidomide and vioxx, not to mention the Tuskeegee syphilis experiments. (Leaving out many other possible examples for brevity sake)

    Re vaccines, the alternative schedule appeals to parents who want to vaccinate their kids, but also want to mitigate even a tiny risk that there is something to the allegations. Btw, can you point me to the medical case for mandating first day hepatitis vaccination of infants? I don't think a baby is going to be sharing needles.

    The other issue I had more generally with the tone of the article is that at least in the US, we have real reason to be skeptical of primary care. The family doc/ internist/ general practitioner is more and more frequently an employee of a large organization run by non doctor managers who are there to extract cash. Some of the big players are owned by venture capital firms. With appointments set at 15 minute intervals, and crippling demands on the doctor for documentation for billing, not to mention the additional time suck of negotiating treatment permission from insurance companies, there is little time to investigate the patient's health needs unless they are blatantly obvious. I'm not skeptical of medicine as such, but medicine as practiced under these constraints is hard to trust.

    One appeal of 'alternative approach practitioners' is that they actually take the time to listen to a complex narrative. Being listened to in depth can in itself be healing. Being rushed, often inaccurately categorized, and put down, which happens all too often, is the opposite of healing. If doctors want to win back patients who look to the alternative methods, they need to offer attention and care. That's impossible within many parts of our system. This is tragic, because you and your colleagues really do have life saving and improving methods in your arsenal.

    Anyway, thank you again for your work. I will continue to read here and look for you at Daily Beast.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I would add that, before you finally get to see your provider, you may be treated rudely by schedulers, billing clerks, screeners, nursing assistants, aids and techs who treat you like a drug seeking idiot. Not every patient is stupid, but many minimally trained staff seem to think we should be treated that way.
      Most docs and NPs I have known are good folks....but getting through to them can be frustrating. Thus, Web MD.

      Delete
  10. You need to tell your editor to print and proofread your articles manually since s/he's relying on the red underlines to catch errors. In the last paragraph: "But if you are really interested in being different, try wearing pants on you head."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I must be missing the error. That's exactly what I wrote and how it was intended.

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    2. your head

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    3. Yes, that's what I meant to write.

      Delete
    4. The error the previous poster pointed out is "pants on YOU head," which should be "pants on YOUR head" (emphasis added).

      Delete
    5. Wow, I missed that entirely. At least twice. I shall hang my head in shame.

      Delete
  11. So... after a quick search, I found that specific article only on The Daily Beast. Does that mean you'll be not posting those on this blogspot?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Since I am contracted by TDB, whatever I write for them becomes their intellectual property. I can post a synopsis or the first few paragraphs here as long as it links back over to them. It's all very complicated.

      Delete
  12. It was certainly good, but it was a bit too long and wasn't entertaining as your blog posts (no f bombs, no condescending sarcasm?) I found myself skimming the paragraphs in the middle. There wasn't enough DocBastard in it.

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    Replies
    1. I agree. I used a slightly toned-down level of snark, and that may have dulled the level of wit a touch. As for the length, I suppose I had a lot to say. I had more to add, but I cut it off before I had another War and Peace on my hands.

      I wouldn't expect the same sort of writing there compared to here, at least not in the beginning. TDB readers aren't used to my writing, and based on the comments, several of the readers didn't get me.

      Delete
    2. Have you considered that "oh dang, they didn't 'get' me" may be a very core part of the very problem under discussion. To claim the universal fig leaf of sarcasm as a shield, while accusing anyone of disagreeing of being a "cool kid rebel" is irony of the highest order. Maybe I'm wrong and it is just mere hypocrisy.

      You may claim a style and snark that readers have to get, but humor is used to mask uncomfortable truths, and you seem to really believe the disdain that it masks.In general the cognitive biases towards over confidence widely on view in the medical field peek through your post perhaps more than you realize. Too many friends to often have had their symptoms ignore and misdiagnosed before the doctors finally have to admit the patient actually maybe knew their bodies reactions and were right all along.

      But keep denying germ theory as a field, and going into surgery with filthy hands, while claiming to know best.

      Also, I'd say the last sentence on the TDB post might have something to do with "it" after all.

      Oh, wait, sorry, you might not have "gotten" my post.

      Delete
    3. You are indeed wrong, but for reasons above your ability to comprehend, apparently. Humour and sarcasm are used for numerous reasons, not just to "mask uncomfortable truths". I use it to get a point across, one you obviously didn't get. That doesn't point to a deficiency on my part, since many others got the point precisely. It points towards your inability to "get it".

      The bias is yours here. Your claim that "too many friends to (sic) often have had their symptoms ignore (sic) . . . " clearly demonstrates that your (or your friends') negative experiences are influencing your opinion not only on medicine, but on me.

      I have no idea where you're going with your germ theory comment. Perhaps you'd like to elaborate. I strongly suspect you won't.

      Get it now? No?

      Delete
  13. Congrats to you on (the) TDB gig! I've never gone to their website but if it means reading you twice, I'll become one more customer that they have. More ink to your pen...

    ReplyDelete

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