I started this blog in Feb of 2008, which means in Feb of 2012, I will have been writing for 4 years. Wow. When I started this thing, I did so as a way to relieve stress and VENT. Mr Chick was a great soundboard for the difficulties in my day, but I didn’t marry him to for that and he deserves WAY better. My hope in writing was to throw out my thoughts to the 4 winds of the internet in hopes that just maybe, a few people may read it. Perhaps I may make a virtual “friend” who shares some of my frustrations/joys/experiences in the world of retail pharmacy.
I wrote about what I knew: working as a woman in a retail pharmacy in the United States. I make no claim to anything else. I am not particularly politically minded so I don’t tend to write about the “issues” surrounding pharmacy unless I knew them intimately. I also make no claims about being an expert in writing. I have no doubt I had tons of misspellings, capitals where they shouldn’t be and punctuation all in the wrong places. I just don’t care about those things all that much. I had a point to get across and that was my intent. Tense, punctuation, verbiage, etc…whatever…really didn’t matter. So, if I spelled QUEUE , as QUE, ( as one reader pointed out). Sorry about that, but thanks for pointing it out. I did correct it.
When I started writing I really only wanted to achieve two things in my posts: interesting…and/or relevant. I have always had an interest in creative writing but writing for only the sake of writing seemed a waste of time. Thats why I launched a blog. Maybe….just maybe somebody would find it.
I kinda figured that if anybody found my blog it would most likely be people who are ALSO pharmacists. Surprisingly, that turned out to NOT be the case. Based on comments over the years, it seems to be mostly average Janes and Joes out there. In fact, I was incredulous to learn that since March of 2o11, I have had 109,600+ visits to this page. That was when I finally installed a site meter. I was just curious. I know there are a lot of RE-visits to this sites by regular readers, but I was amazed at the overall number. I’d love to know how I was found by all these people. I was also shocked to find I have readers all over the planet, not just the US.
Some people I have found relate to and understand nearly everything I post. Others seems to take exception to nearly everything I write. To THEM I have never understood why they keep reading. Its like going to a restaurant you hate over and over and expecting a different result. The real nasty comments I never posted for public viewing. Anonymity allows for some awful things to be said on the internet and I wasn’t going to perpetuate that slime. I really learned about the hot buttons: subjects that got lots of comments. No.1 hot button: People on pain meds. If I wrote a negative post about a drug seeker, comments came out of the woodwork condemning me for my lack of compassion. Read my post: drug seeker does not equal legitimate pain sufferer… Never has…never will..moving on…………
The profession of pharmacy is rather mundane. I am not going to sugar coat it. I highly doubt that any network would make a reality series about retail pharmacy. Most of the time ( if it was accurately portrayed) pharmacy is a real snoozer in a pressure cooker. Ya stand on your feet for hours at a time, filling prescriptions, checking prescriptions, deciphering scribble aka ” the prescription”, checking drug interactions, managing allergies, answering questions, talking to drs/nurses/med assistants/ etc, answering phones, and dealing with patients/customers who have no idea what goes on behind the scene. …..” ya’ll just put pills into bottles, right?” I mean really, the last time you really saw a pharmacist on TV was what? THE SIMPSONS…Good old Ned Flanders, who eventually quit Pharmacy to open a business for left handed people. Its a stressful, busy, environment..but its rarely newsworthy until somebody screws up and kills someone.
If I wrote about the mundanity of pharmacy ( which I doubt is a real word), then my site meter would probably have stopped moving at 109 instead of 109,000. I am sure that a thousand posts about Mrs Jones who called in her prescription for lisinopril a day in advance, then picked it up without incident wouldn’t be very read-worthy. Therefore……
I wrote about absurdity, the hilarity, the weirdness, the emotional, and the abnormal-ness that occasionally blesses ( or curses) our department.
To some readers, that made me come across as a people hating sarcastic a$$hole who should hang up the white coat and die. Those readers fail to understand my reason to write….to vent at the frustrations. to those people: YOU ARE WRONG.
Joe Q Public is a difficult customer. He doesn’t care about the person ahead of him except that he wants him out of the way. He doesn’t care about the person behind him because, well, he is BEHIND him and JQP was here FIRST. He doesn’t care about the lady in the wait room with the sniveling kid other than the fact the crying irritates him while he is in line. EVERYBODY is JQP to some degree. I however choose to care about them all. I care if the line is long because long lines suck. I care when something isn’ t ready on time because JQP has to wait longer. I care if I am out of short on something because JQP has to make an extra trip. I care that Mrs JQP’s kid is sick because he will make her life miserable until he feels better. I care if the doctor hasn’t called in a prescription for JQP because I would prefer to have it ready. I care about all this stuff because its my job. I care to spend 2 hours after I close finishing up the days work not only because its the nice thing to do, but 50 customer’s rx’s will be done instead of NOT DONE. I care enough to deliver prescriptions to a few people whose own family don’t want to make the trip to pick up their things…and when they do, piss and moan about it. ( one nearly blanched when she was grousing about having to pick up meds for her son. I said ” thats fine,you can leave, I’ll bring it to him, I usually do.” She had no idea I had been delivering to him for over a year. I haven’t seen her since. I guess she abdicated the job to me)
But I dont live in a Prozac induced state of euphoria either. Its a tough job, so writing allowed me to decompress from that pressure.
But, 4 years into it ( and one long blog post later) I am running out of ideas. Writing me-too posts over and over will get old and cease to be interesting and relevant. If the only thing I want to write about is drug-seekers, too-stupid-to-believe customers, and insurance hassles, I could do that forever, but even that gets old. Everybody must run out ideas. TAP is virtually gone, and TAestP has pretty much left the building too. Ole Apothecary quit his blog and most of the writers who were prolific when I started have either abandoned their blogs or rarely write. Some have stepped up in their absence. RedHeaded Pharmacist is my favorite, writing interesting and relevant posts both about retail pharmacy and the profession in general.
So, I am slowing down a bit. Instead of writing 7-20 posts a month, I’ll write one when I feel something is particularly interesting/ funny/or out of this world. I hope to keep a pace of 3-4 per month. Maybe the new year will bring more and interesting ideas. Maybe you have your own.
I appreciate your readership. I’m not going anywhere. Lets just say PC is moving to part-time…always a lofty goal for the overworked..right?