Monday, October 27th, 2014
“I’M MAD AS HELL AND I’M NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANYMORE!”
That quote is from the film A Thousand Clowns (not originally from the film
Network). If you haven’t ever seen A Thousand Clowns, do it. The lead character Murray (Jason Robards) is beyond a free spirit. At one point, fed up with the craziness of the world, he shouts this mantra from his window into the neighborhood.
Why am I mad as hell?
When I’m a customer, I want to be right.
When I’m a patient, I want the doctor to be right.
I went to a restaurant this week for lunch.
Glad to see lots of open tables but puzzled about the line of people waiting.
They take my name. I wait. We all wait. Standing.
The line moves slowly. My turn along with my friend.
First in line. Six tables open. Guy says we’ll seat you in about 5 minutes.
I ask if we can sit at a table and wait.
He says, ‘No, we don’t want to swamp the chef with orders all at the same time.” I say, “I just want to sit and have water and look at the menu.”
He says, “No, we don’t seat people til the chef is ready.”
We leave. I forgot the business exists for the chef.
Next restaurant, the hostess asks us if we mind waiting while she finishes a phone call? We say, “yes” we mind.
I order a salad. I can’t choose the dressing I want. Salads come with only the one mentioned in the menu. Easier for the kitchen. She brings the wrong salad with its lifelong companion dressing and asks if I mind keeping it because it’s really really good. “No”, I say, “I want my salad with the rigid choice of dressing.”
I go to the doctor to get back results of important tests. Lung tests.
I follow his lead. He chats about my sleep apnea, we share recipes. We talk kids. He is very very nice. I’m getting anxious to hear results. He starts to leave. I say, “No I’m here for test results.” He says, “They never tell me” He gives the results. They are good. He leaves. I grab a nurse and say, “Great news, I don’t have cancer, but I still can’t breathe”. Doctor comes back and examines me and says, “Yep, you have asthma and we need lung tests.” Very nice guy. Very. But who is in charge? Me?
You all know this. I just wanted to gripe. Work is being shifted and unloaded but it has to go somewhere and that’s on the consumer’s shoulders. I understand self-accountability. But don’t proclaim service. Make sure I know I’m in this alone. New definition of customer—that person who makes the seller’s job easier. New definition of health client—exhaustingly vigilant person
protecting self from health care.
I’M MAD AS HELL AND I’M NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANYMORE!!
This is best shouted out an open window.