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The picture-in-my-blog-post thing seems to be becoming a bit of a theme. I’ll just ride with it for now…

One thing that keeps me Always Grumpy is being kept in the dark. We spend so much of our times there that it’s no wonder everyone knows what I mean when I say I’m kept like a mushroom! And it’s no surprise that other people feel the same way as I do about it.

But I learned something new last week.

I had gone down to my Dad’s place to help him and my step-Mom clean out his office. You’ll remember from a couple of posts back that I’m Never Doc… and my Dad is Always Doc, just retiring from his full-time medical practice at the youthful age of 82. We spent an hour or so sorting things to keep (and hence cart away now) from things to discard (and hence leave for the junk man). We worked our way through the furniture, fixtures and decades of ornaments and tchotkes from Always Doc’s many decades of practice slowly and carefully, from the reception area and waiting room through the records room and Dad’s office to the examining room.

In this last, all-important room my lesson awaited me. But it was not obvious! Step-Mom and I went in and out of the room, sorting and carting and boxing. I noticed an old lamp in one corner, its business end pointed across the room and held in place by surgical tape. This wasn’t something I wanted to keep, but it made me smile. That’s Always Doc at his best! If something’s still good enough to use, he’ll happily repair it, keep it and give it a new or longer life.

The lamp looked like this:

Do you know what this lamp is for?

I didn’t realize what it was for. If you’ve ever worked in a family doctor’s office, maybe you know. Me, I had to ask my step-Mom, who told me with a smile of her own. We all know it’s sometimes important to shine a light on a dark situation, literally and/or figuratively. This lamp sat innocuously across the room from Always Doc’s examining table for decades, and I bet my Dad turned it on several times a week. It’s aimed directly towards the nether end of the examining table, ready to perform one of the most important tasks of all: putting light where the sun does not shine.

Jonathan Gladstone is alwaysgrumpy at or follow me on Twitter @jbglad59.


One Comment

  1. Good for your dad — he knew what he needed and it’s usefulness didn’t just because it needed repair!


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