Grand Rounds: What's on the Menu?
The bells on the door of the diner near my office jangled as I walked in.
"Hey Kerri," said Lisa, the waitress who knows my morning coffee order by heart. "Here for lunch today?"
"Yeah, I'm looking for a little snack here at the Grand Rounds Cafe." I took a seat. "What's on the menu?"
Lisa handed me a menu. "We've got some great options this afternoon. These are the house favorites today. And did you hear about that girl who was mauled by the dog?"
"That's over at HealthLine. Employers are paying people to keep their health in top shape. And if you look right here, we have a side dish about traveling in diabetes style from Shoot Up or Put Up. More diabetes tidbits at the ACP Internist. Look closer, Kerri. We've got A Hero You Can Count (Carbs) On at My Favourite Number, JDRF T-Shirts at Candy Hearts, and a diabetes packing list at Wilson's Wanderings. You're into diabetes, right?"
"I am. I have it and I work in the diabetes field. But why do you keep adding blog names to these menu items? It's weirding me out. I just want some food."
"Honey, this is the Grand Rounds Cafe. We're all about medical blogs today. So shut up and order." She flipped open her pad and put her pen at the ready.
"Man, you are pushy today! But speaking of diabetes, no metformin on the menu today? I heard from Dr. Shock that it can reduce cardiovascular disease for my type 2 buddies."
Lisa clicked her pen. "Nope. Thanks to Rachel's Diabetes Tales, we've decided to take it off the menu."
"Geez. Okay, well I'll take a vegetarian route this afternoon. How about a nice spinach salad with mushrooms and bacon?"
"Goin' all veggie on us? Teen Health 411 says vegetarian could be the new eating disorder for those teenyboppers. And the bacon? Pffft. I know you read that Berci at Scienceroll. Swine flu, anyone?"
I threw down my menu. "Lisa! Stop with the blog name insertions! You're confusing the hell out of me!"
She snapped her gum in retort. "How exactly will people know whose blog is whose unless I say it? Don't forget where you are, missy. This is the Grand ..."
"... Rounds Cafe. I know. It slipped my mind for a sec there. I'm sorry."
"It's okay. I know you like me ... you really like me. Like Medical Marginalia wrote about her doctor. Not like Leslie and her emotionally unavailable doctor at her blog, Getting Closer to Myself." Lisa winked as she wrote my order down and then wandered back to the kitchen.
"Gotta demand the best! Like Duncan Cross!" I yelled back. Two can play at this game.
While I waited at the table, I thumbed through a few discarded papers left by previous patrons. I caught a great article about the Land of the Screwed in the latest edition of A Happy Hospitalist. I also got sucked into an article about drinking your way to sobriety at InsureBlog. I found another terrific article at Nuts for Healthare about evidence based medicine. Doc Gurley offered up a piece on brown fat (which I couldn't stop reading, even though it was a little graphic for lunch time).
I even found an article at SharpBrains about the creation of a cognitive health track at an upcoming blog conference. The reading material kept on coming, as if it were part of some big blog carnival about the best of medblogging. At Nurse Handover's blog, I mean newspaper, I stumbled upon a post remembering the New Zealand and Australian nurses on ANZAC day.
So many health articles, all conveniently left at my lunch table!
A glossy copy of Emergiblog gave me the latest on Nurse Jackie. Notes of an Anesthesiologist told a tale of two disagreeing specialists. A Happy Hospitalist gave a less-than-happy assessment of the economy and healthcare. A Paper Mask picked up the Wellsphere torch lit by other medbloggers and asked more questions. And tucked under the salt shaker was an article from Kennedy's Tumor about the possible cloning of Russian tennis players.
"Whoa." I was overwhelmed with information. I rounded out my reading with an article from the Health Business Blog about the Boston Marathon, just in time to see Lisa returning with my lunch order.
"Here you go. One spinach salad, and I brought you a diet iced tea, too."
"Thanks, Lisa," I said as I unscrewed the bottle, then massaged my aching wrist."
"that still bothering you? Did you check out those exercises to avoid pain at the computer? I read about it on How to Cope with Pain."
"Nah. I'm better off creating a powerful physical space to combat this injury. I learned about that at Chronic Babe." I smiled a bit. "See? I can blog-name drop, too."
"Well aren't you fancy, Miss Kerri?"
"I am. I'm even eating this healthy ol' spinach salad as prep for pre-pregnancy. You read that article on A Chronic Dose, right? About pregnancy and chronic illness?"
"Of course I read it. I'm a blog-addicted waitress here at the Grand Rounds Cafe. But I know you'll be fine. You have a good partner, which is important. I read about partners who are jerks over at In Sickness and in Health."
"True. I'll keep myself as healthy as possible. I don't want to end up having, or becoming, a tubby tot like I read about on Reality Rounds."
"You can also just recycle, which keeps the earth fit. According to The Fitness Fixer."
I stopped eating. "Lisa, that one was just sad. You threw that out there with barely a decent segue. Is the Grand Rounds Cafe all about dropping link love all over the place? Or can we actually tell a story here?"
She stopped and gave me a knowing look. "Kerri, where else can you find a smattering of information about uninsured women fighting cervical cancer? Yes, the Colorado Health Insurance Insider. How about straight talk on medication mindfulness? That's right - MedScape. Where else will you find surgeons admitting they get in it for the chicks? Only at other things amazni. But here, Kerri. Here at the Grand Rounds Cafe, you can get all this stuff in one place. It's the best of medblogging. And coffee."
"Wow, Lisa. That's quite a speech. I'm impressed."
"Yeah. I'm impressive." The bell on the diner door jangled again and a new customer strolled in. "Alright, kid. Eat your salad and I'll bring you a nice plate of Teochiu. Courtesy of The Cockroach Catcher."
Lisa walked away and I took another bite of salad. Then the man in the booth behind me spoke up.
"Hey. Excuse me. Hi, my name is Steve and I'm late. But I have an article for Grand Rounds. Can you add it?"
I was just about done with my lunch. But he had a lot of heart, this guy.
"No problem, my friend. I'll add you and your Adventures of a Funky Heart to the menu here."
I finished my lunch and left money on the table.
'No problem, hun!"
(Grand Rounds is served up fresh next week at Nursing Handover!)