Who doesn’t love a good party? I just try to be sure I get invited to my fair share. What makes a great time is a good crowd of happy-go-lucky people in a good mood, yummy snacks, an assortment of beverages, and music that pleases the crowd. You can keep it simple as parties go, no need to cater and fuss. People can bring food: the famous pot luck. You get a lot of interesting, often ethnic food, that way. You never know what will appear in the mystery pot. Depending upon the age of the guests, the food will be edible, gourmet, or sensational. I think it is fun to find out so when I hear it is pot luck, I don’t shy away.
A recent party of note that I attended and enjoyed was for a friend who had just finished his medical residency. This is a pretty big step in life for a doctor that merits celebration. Not only did I contribute my share of food and drink, but I wanted to buy a nice gift for the occasion. So what does one give to a medical professional on his way up the hospital ladder? Obviously, he’d already bought all of the essential medical school supplies, so I had to think harder. I suppose almost anything will do. You can chose from a stethoscope, a blood pressure monitor (like the portable wrist type that is easy to carry about and use), and a backpack worthy of the new career. I like this idea and possibly filling it with some medical supplies like tongue depressors, Q-tips, moist tissues, bandages and tape, a pen light with a battery, and assorted waterproof carrying cases in case something spilled inside. There would be no iodine. Can you imagine that colorful mess? I also had the idea of a gift certificate for a set of scrubs (his old ones were more than retired since the residency). Shoe covers and a surgeon’s bandana would complete the ensemble.
I fussed over which gifts for some time before the actual date of the party and waited until I heard what other people were bringing. That would narrow my focus and help avoid duplication. I wanted to be the most original with my gift since he is a good friend, and I didn’t mind if it had more than a pinch of humor. I might put in the backpack the book “Laughter is the Best Medicine,” an anthology from Reader’s Digest of hilarious medical jokes. There are lots of funny prints that doctors can put up in their offices and tons of cartoons that can be mounted and framed. I had lots of possibilities. I really had to narrow it down. I ended up with several small gifts neatly ensconced in the backpack. I could add others later for his next career graduation. Don’t medical students have two years of residency anyway? I enjoyed the process of selection and was more than willing to go through it again the next time around. It would only be one year later anyway.