I went to a dermatologist on Friday to check on a birthmark: benign. Dr. Danesh, I found, was very amiable. His striking young assistant, Vincent, was also very nice. Although I only met with the doctor for less than three minutes, I felt like going back and getting a full check-up. I felt like he cared. That’s something I didn’t feel when I went to Dr. Lii, the family physician who referred me to Danesh in the first place. Too bad Danesh is just a specialist.
While I was waiting to be called, there was an older couple, somewhat overweight, ahead of me with their granddaughter. She was petite and adorable – quite a contrast from her grandparents. She spoke with the cute lisp that most three year-olds have, “I’m hungry… wanna quacker… gwapes!” So the grandmother was reading to her when the grandpop went in for his visit. Vincent asked whether they’d like to come in. The girl was happy being read to, but when her grandmother stood up to go inside, she started wailing! “No, no, the doctor’s here to see grandpa!” She consoled. The girl wouldn’t listen to any reason. She knew. Or, at least she thought she knew… she was afraid of the doctor from her previous visits. Memories of needles, a stranger asking difficult questions, and probing in places where a schoolboy would get socked if he tried. The waiting room was full. Everyone laughed at the girl’s “conditioned reaction,” including me. I laughed at a little girl’s genuine terror. Isn’t that horrible?
So, I got my first paycheck. Not bad. The one next week will be even bigger, since I worked fourteen hours of overtime. It will be at least $640 after taxes. Not bad, except I had to work all seven days of the week!
Two-thirds of my earnings will be going straight into the piggybank. The goal is to save ten grand before I head off to China. My expenditures tend to be low, since I don’t have to pay rent, and my parents feed me. So, the hundred or so bucks leftover every week is discretionary income. My mom would like me to take her shopping. Wouldn’t that be nice?
Back to Countrywide, I found out Tuesday that Jonathan did 17 on the first day of work compared to my fifteen. I was going easy, so I thought I could trump the next day. I finished twenty. On Wednesday I got twenty-four. On Thursday, I only made twenty-three. I thought I could keep up with the numbers, but I’ve found it difficult. It’s tiring to go so fast. I need to pace myself. So, I’ve slowed down some. I’m still #1 in the group, but only by three or five files instead of two to three times the number they’ve completed. (I get the feeling that my peers would like to see me fall flat on my face – physically and figuratively.)
L is really busy. She’s seriously campaigning for class president. Apparently, the position lasts for the whole period that they’re in school. So, in two weeks of intensive campaigning, the elected officials will be the class’ officials for all four years. Pretty prestigious position to put into one’s resume. L doesn’t think she’ll win, but she wants to run to prevent some people from winning. Maybe she has a case of Ralph Nader during the Clinton-Dole faceoff of ’94? Unlike being a nation’s president, being class president offers not much in power. So, there is not much more to the position other than prestige and a popularity contest. He or she would represent the class, but what can she do other than that? Any budgetary powers? None. Any legislative powers? None. Judiciary or executive? None. Just voice. Used properly, I guess, having a voice and a hundred or so students to back it can be quite powerful. The question is, how often do a bunch of pharmacist students want to get up and protest about something? It’s another run-of-the-mill popularity contest. I’ve never been good at those. So, I don’t put too much value in them. But, if L really wants to win (and somehow I think her doubts is preventing it), then good luck to her. I just hope she isn’t too bummed if she doesn’t win.
In California, Bill Simon (a Republican) is trying to unseat current Govenor Gray Davis (a Democrat). I tend to be fiscally conservative and socially liberal. Simon’s platform, (as much as I could understand since he tends to be as vague as a typical politician), is too socialy conservative for me. I don’t mind my tax dollars being spent on education. And I dislike tax cuts since they benefit the more well-off than anyone else. If any needs money, its the elderly, the disadvantaged and marginalized Californians.
Prop 47 is going to give California schools $2.1 billion. It’s going to cost us taxpayers, excluding principal, $2.3 billion over 30 years. Nice profit for bankers… but its for the schools, so I’m all for it.