Monday, June 30, 2014

The Smiling Assassin

One of bosses at work is known as the Smiling Assassin. Not the most original nickname, I'll grant you. But it's very apt. He will stare you down, and take you apart piece by piece, while grinning affably from ear to ear, as if he's your best friend in the world. 

Contrast this with one of the other bosses, the Inquisitive Assassin. He just keeps asking you question after question. What do you mean by this? What did the patient say about that? What other things might you consider? What's the evidence for that management plan of yours? Where exactly did you get your degree from anyway?

Then there's the Frowning Assassin. She will also show no mercy, but instead has a big scowl on her face the whole time. She's either perpetually disgusted at what you have to say, or very hard of hearing. 

Still, she's easier to deal with than the Surprised Assassin. Every time I speak to him about a patient, he reacts by jumping up, mouth wide open, eyebrows lifted, hands waving in the air like a jack-in-the-box. It's very unnerving, especially when he maintains that expression and pose while telling you why every thing you have said and done for the last three years was wrong. 

Once you've faced him down, you then might have to deal with the Weeping Assassin. He just sits there sobbing, presumably reflecting with a broken heart on the dreadful fate of the poor patients that we are trying to manage as we struggle along in our ineptitude. 

The last of the bunch is the Thoughtful Assassin. He sits there, rubbing his chin in contemplation, giving nothing away, just taking it all in. Then, when you've said everything you have to say, he kills you. Actually kills you dead. His favourite method is to wait until you turn away, then he stabs you in the back of your calf muscle with a poisoned umbrella. For the more senior registrars, he will use a more complex plan, as they are naturally wary from seeing so many colleagues fall along the way. For example, recently he obtained advance information on an incoming patient transfer from a regional hospital, and planted an explosive device in the handset of the telephone in the doctors' office, keyed to go off when the pager number of the relevant surgical registrar on duty is dialled. Kaboom. Whereas with the interns, he usually doesn't even let them finish their first sentence. He just has an accomplice in a nearby building pick them off with a sniper rifle. 

The Thoughtful Assassin is on duty tomorrow. I think I might call in sick. 



3 comments:

Anonymous said...


Dear PTR,

What do all the other Assassins at your (appalling sounding) work call you?

Have you taken a cue from the Ramones and opted to be Joey Assassin? Or have you opted to be Fonzie Assassin? Or perhaps Smithers Assassin?

PTR said...

I've decided not to take cues from the Ramones ever since they all dropped dead - otherwise Joey Assassin would have been pretty snappy actually.

Perhaps I should make this the subject of my first reader poll in, like, totally, 4 eva.

K Fisher said...

Pithy and imaginative commentary on modern human interactions. Wicked, excellent fun.