The Thinking 


September 21, 2017

I’LL be having surgery tomorrow on my broken wrist. The radius bone was knocked out of place and will be put back with a neat metal plate. The surgeon said the procedure is one of his “favorite operations” and his young assistant said, “Yeah, it’s a whole lot of fun.” He wasn’t joking. I guess I’m glad there are people who get a kick out of this kind of thing.

 — Comments —

A reader writes:

You know ‘fun’ is the only important thing anymore…sigh.

Tim writes:

Fun? Fun for whom?

Dan R. writes:

Good luck on your surgery today. While I was surprised to read of the assistant’s use of the word “fun” to describe the procedure, I thought of what it might mean from the doctor’s perspective. Or think, on the other hand, if he had just said it’s a gruesome procedure! I see the comment as reflecting a view that it’s nasty break but with a novel solution that has a high success rate. “Fun” in that sense becomes a sloppy, but very contemporary way to describe the satisfaction that usually results for both doctor and patient. While it may not have been the best thing to say to a patient, I’d like to think the comment bodes well for you.

Laura writes:


That’s exactly what they meant. I was just poking fun at them. I was not offended. As they explained it, the procedure is satisfying — and yes, kind of fun — for them because it is so reliable and has such a high success rate. A doctor wants to solve problems, not create them.

The surgeon also said I was a good candidate for it. I didn’t scream or cry when they moved my broken arm around. “You’re very chilled,” he said.

I don’t know…. Maybe I should have screamed a bit?

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