[culture] Scenes from an oncology unit

Gentleman with a booming voice is having a loud, lengthy conversation next to us in the surgical oncology waiting room. After a few passive-aggressive dirty looks from me and calendula_witch, I finally go up to the receptionist and ask if this is a cell-phone free zone as most waiting rooms at OHSU are. He’s unsure, and clearly doesn’t want to be drawn in. I return to my seat and the woman with the loud talker looks at me in disgust and says sarcastically, “Really?

Me: “Yes. This is a pretty quiet place, and his voice carries. It’s quite disruptive.”

Her: “Well, he was having a problem at work.”

Me: “Yes, I know. I heard all of it. But there’s an area down by the elevator lobby for cell phones.”

Her: “He’s quite ill, you know.” (This she tells me in an oncology unit. Ahem.)

Me: “What do you think I’m doing here?”

It’s that weird po-mo etiquette that says objecting to someone’s intrusive cell phone conversation is the height of rudeness, but doesn’t see the intrusive conversation as a problem. She was most put out at my objection.

(The guy was quite apologetic and very nice about it, btw.)

3 thoughts on “[culture] Scenes from an oncology unit

  1. Alyx Dellamonica says:

    Okay, that is a weird coincidence. I spent an hour waiting for immunotherapy today, all while thinking STFU thoughts at two blowhards who were bellowing at each other about the state of Publick Edumacation in B.C.

  2. Jan says:

    Don’t you just love Mercury retrograde (almost done now)

  3. pelican says:

    “Why do you think I’m here?”

    Excellent, and only appropriate, response. Sorry that the admin staff chickened out and didn’t put an end to it.

    Best wishes for tomorrow!

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