A Bit Derpy With the Herpie

| Lakewood, WA, USA | Health & Body, Ignoring & Inattentive

(I’ve been having breathing problems and suspect I may have pneumonia. I set up an appointment with a new doctor, hoping to get a referral for a chest X-ray. I am in my late teens at the time and have never had a sexual or romantic partner. The doctor comes into the exam room, pulls up a chair, and sits uncomfortably close to me.)

Doctor: “Are you sexually active?”

Me: “No…”

Doctor: “Have you ever been tested for herpes?”

Me: *a little surprised* “No… I’ve never been sexually active. I’ve just been having some breathing problems and chest pain lately, and I was hoping I could—”

Doctor: “So you’ve never had a partner who was infected with herpes?”

Me: “Um, no, ma’am. I’ve never had sex.”

Doctor: “Have you kissed anyone who had herpes?”

Me: *shyly* “I’ve never kissed anybody, period.”

Doctor: “Are you sure?”

Me: “Very.”

Doctor: *slowly standing up, going through my file as she speaks* “Well, you know, herpes is a very easy virus to contract. Most young people your age don’t realize how serious it can be. And it’s on the rise now, did you know that?”

Me: “No… I didn’t.”

Doctor: “Most people don’t! So you’re sure you’ve never had herpes?”

Me: “I’m sure. Can we talk about my breathing problem?”

Doctor: “Sure.”

(She goes about a routine exam, listens to my lungs, etc. After a moment she types something up in her computer, then comes back to sit right in front of me.)

Doctor: “All right, I’m sending in a referral for you to have a chest x-ray. Your lungs are a little buggy, but the x-ray will confirm whether or not there’s any infection.”

Me: “Great. Thank—”

Doctor: “I think I should refer you for an STD screening, too.”

Me: “That’s really not necessary. I’ve never had sex.”

Doctor: *not really listening at this point* “Are you sure? Herpes is a very easy virus to contract. And if you have sex with someone who’s infected, there’s really no way to protect yourself. I mean…” *she stands up, begins making absurd hand gestures* “…you’d basically need something like a big wet suit, with a tiny hole cut out here…” *she gestures to her groin* “so the penis can get in, and then maybe, just MAYBE, you’d be able to keep the herpes out. But even that’s no guarantee. It’s a big problem. It’s very serious. I think you should be screened.”

Me: *kind of stunned* “No, that’s not necessary. No. I don’t have herpes, ma’am.”

Doctor: “Are you sure? Even if the penis barely penetrates—”

Me: “I’m a lesbian.”

Doctor: “Lesbians can get herpes, too, let me tell you! Even with a wet suit!”

Me: “I haven’t had sex, ma’am. I don’t need a screening. I don’t have herpes!”

Doctor: “You’re sure?!”

Me: “YES!”

(She begrudgingly drops it, writes up my referral, and sends me out to the lobby where my dad is waiting. We get back in the car to head home when he turns to me to ask how the appointment went.)

Dad: “Do you like your new doctor?”

Me: “Um. She’s kind of strange.”

Dad: “How so?”

Me: “I think she’s under the impression that everyone has herpes. She wouldn’t stop talking about herpes.”

Dad: *after a beat of silence* “We’ll find you a new doctor.”


Seven Copies For Seven People

| Chicago, IL, USA | Bosses & Owners

(This is the 80s, and my first real job in an office.)

Boss: “Please make me 7 copies of this document.”

(I go and do that.)

Boss: “Great, now please fax them to these 7 people.”

Me: “What do you want me to do with these after I fax them? Should I file them in each recipient’s file? These are not people we would normally have files on…”

Boss: “No, just throw them away. I just needed them faxed to those people.”

Me: “Then why didn’t I just fax the original to each of them?”

Boss: “…That was dumb of me, wasn’t it?”


Drawing Blood For The Rokeg Blood Pie

, | Huntsville, AL, USA | Geeks Rule, Health & Body

(I’m a Junior in high school and waiting to have my blood taken.)

Nurse: *as she’s sanitizing my arm, she looks up and sees the head doctor* “Aw, man… I hate it when he’s here. He always looks over your shoulder when you’re trying to work!”

Me: *twisting around to look in his direction*

Nurse: “He’s the bald man that looks like a Klingon.” *shocked look* “Did I say that out loud?”

Me: *dying of laughter* “Yes… Yes, you did!”


Office Pest

| England, UK | Coworkers, Food & Drink, Health & Body

(A while ago we had a new coworker start in another department. Occasionally, he and I happen to take lunch at the same time and we go to eat at the same place.)

Coworker: *as I sip a [Soda] while walking* “You know that stuff will kill you. It’s full of aspartame –” *pronouncing it wrong* “– which gives you tumours and cancer.”

Me: “Yuh huh.”

(Note: this was regular Soda which uses actual sugar.)

Coworker: “It’s true! It’s evil stuff, and all supported by the government.” *inhales deeply on his cigarette*

Me: “And what about that filthy thing in your mouth? That reeks, by the way.”

Coworker: “This is different; I choose to do this to myself.”

Me: “Riiight…”

(He ducks into a shop to buy some cheap pastries, then heads toward some benches, still going on about aspartame, and proceeds to break up his pastry and throw it to the pigeons.)

Me: “Uh… did you just buy that to feed the pigeons? They’re a pest, you know.”

Coworker: “Yeah, I can’t stand them. That’s why I’m feeding them.”

Me: “Run that by me again?”

Coworker: “Smart, see? I only feed the weak crippled ones so they survive and dilute the gene pool.”

Me: *bewildered* “You realise with the amount of rubbish and food that gets tossed on the ground they’re all likely going to survive anyway?”

Coworker: “Huh… probably…” *continues throwing pastry to the pigeons*

(Later, back in the office, he challenges me to look into aspartame so I find an official report on its effects declaring it safe in small doses. After a few minutes he comes into my office.)

Coworker: “Pfff, government approved. Don’t trust anything they tell you. I’ll find you some real evidence.”

(Shortly afterwards I receive an email containing a document outlining the effects on rats, and he comes back to watch my response.)

Me: “Well, of course they’d get tumours. They fed them 1,000 times the maximum human dose. You feed rats anything in that dose and it’ll kill them.”

Coworker: *shakes his head and walks off, shouting* “It’s all a conspiracy, man! You listen to their lies if you want but I know the truth!”

(He was later fired for turning up late and leaving early without notice, showing up for work stoned, and not showing up at all. NOTE: The debate on aspartame is ongoing but the occasional drink won’t kill you like he was suggesting)


Selfishness In Bloom

| Winnipeg, MB, Canada | Coworkers, Crazy Requests, Love/Romance

(When my then-boyfriend, now-husband were dating, he sent me a beautiful bouquet of roses for our first Valentine’s Day. They were delivered to my office, and this happened.)

Coworker: “Nice flowers.”

Me: “Thanks!”

Coworker: “You know… [Other Coworker] didn’t get any flowers for Valentine’s Day. She hinted and hinted, but her husband didn’t send her any.”

Me: “Oh. That’s too bad.”

Coworker: “So…” *gives me expectant look*

Me: “Yes…?”

Coworker: “So, you should give her some of yours.”

Me: “What? I’m not going to do that.”

Coworker: “Why not? You’ve got so many! You won’t miss them, and they’ll make her happy.”

Me: “Because they’re MY flowers. If you want her to have some, buy her some yourself.”

Coworker: “I can’t believe you’re being so selfish!”