"I tutor Arabic language, Doctor" I answer his question about my profession. He says couple of sentences in Arabic and I'm impressed for a second.
"Let me check your knees and elbows" he says "Okay, no sensitive touch points, how do you sleep?" I say I sleep on my back and I put couple of pillows under my knees. He concludes that it's the mattress. I say to him "Doctor, I assure you, it's not the mattress. in the last three months I went overseas, I slept at my friends' place, and unless I take the medicine, the tingling and numbness in my limbs don't allow me to fall asleep regardless of the mattress".
"How old are you?" to which I answer "38". "See?" he responds with a face expression that I don't know what to make out of. "See what?" I ask. He says "Well, you haven't been 38 before, right?" He sees my "surprised" face expression and he yells at himself "Bad doctor, bad doctor" while he's slapping one hand with the other. He tells me a story about an 80 year-old woman and how he told her "Sweetheart, you haven't been 80 before, so you know, your body does or does not do certain things at this age".
I am shocked, I guess he's trying to be funny. I try to force a smile while I say "I'm 38, not 80 and even if I were 80, I would still like to either fall asleep when I go to bed or at least know exactly what's wrong".
"Do you have a significant other or someone you sleep with? I mean someone who sleeps next to you?"
"Excuse me? I don't see the relevance here"
"Oh, I'm just saying, how annoying that would be for them too, since you have to move your legs and arms to get rid of the tingling". I don't comment. He winks at me and says "It pays off to be single sometimes." I want to take his hand and slap his face instead of his other hand and tell him "You're a Bad doctor who makes assumptions". But I keep my thoughts to myself instead.
- I will ask you to change the position of the way you sleep, and also do an MRI to your neck and STDs.
- STDs! why?
- Oh, I just don't want to leave anything out
- Ummm, okay, but STDs! seriously?
- Hehe, I was once having a conversation with an old lady (Oh great, here comes the old lady again) and I asked her to do some STD tests, to which she answered (and he is now imitating her voice, I'll let you imagine that) But doctor, my husband has been dead for 15 years and I have always been faithful to him, I never had any sexual activity after him. Well sweetheart, I hate to tell you, it's not you whom I'm concerned about her sexual activities, it's your deceased husband whom I'm questioning his faithfulness to you.
My jaw drops and hit the floor. I mean telling a widow after 15 years that her husband could have been cheating on her, is just wrong. He sees the expression on my face and slaps his hand with the other again saying "Bad doctor, bad doctor". I am beyond uncomfortable now, I'm looking for a way out of this room. I say 'My STD results from 3 months ago are in the computer, if you'd like to check them out, please be my guest, but I'm not doing them again."
"Oh, okay then, no worries. Could I have your card to call you for some Arabic lessons".
"I don't have any on me."
"Okay, next time bring one."
"There won't be next time ..... And I don't teach doctors"
Bad doctor, indeed.