Why didn’t anybody tell me that the President of the United States of America stealth-groped Angela Merkel? Oh, never mind why. It doesn’t matter. I can’t lounge around in a drugfog for a week and then cry like a baby when it turns out that I’ve completely missed one of the most beautiful and hilarious examples of your patriarchy dollars at work, ever. But then I find out that Bush has vetoed stem cell funding, like some imbecile medieval pope-king, caving in to pressure from the superstitious white male parochiae. And then I find out I got dissed in the Village Voice, and well, if I had any guts left to bust, I’d bust one.
OK. Now that I’ve got that, along with my boobs, off my chest, let us proceed to an observation I’ve made concerning the Hollywood fantasy TV hospital vs. the real thing. It goes like this.
At one point during my convalescence I was unfortunate enough to watch a few minutes of a show called “Grey’s Anatomy.” Like 50% of all American TV shows, “Grey’s Anatomy” is a hospital drama featuring attractive young doctors who divide their time between boinking each other and valiantly struggling to save the lives of patients with whom they have developed strong emotional ties. I noted that, like all TV hospitals, the Grey’s Anatomy halls are clogged like a bathtub drain with earnest MDs scurrying around macking/saving lives/vogueing/coping with white upper-middle-class issues.
What a howler! Real hospitals are desolate, filthy, harshly-lit vaults of pain and urine, almost entirely devoid of effervescent doctorial presence. You’re lucky to catch a glimpse of a nurse twice a day. One is entirely dependent for survival on the kindness of the Clinical Assistants, a class of hospital organism formerly known as ‘orderlies.’ These are the people who perform the grubby crap. They drop by every four hours to take your vitals and empty your various effluent receptacles. They notice that you were incapable of consuming even one bite of your bland diet of ‘beef tips.’ They are the authority to whom you must appeal for a clean gown when your catheter leaks and you’ve been lying in a puddle of pee for 3 hours. They’re what hospitals are really about, but of course they’re all uneducated Latinos, so they wouldn’t make a very popular TV show.