…feel like you been behind bars? Covid’s done?! Summer convention: Colleen’s family has been coming to the beach forever. Decades and decades. I am new to the mix. Fun?! There is a strange dynamic. The older generation is gone now. This is Colleen’s family – her siblings and her daughter and grand kids – mixed in with her favorite cousin. There are always the missing persons, who could not be present. And, there are complex group dynamics in play. If you look closely at the ‘bee sting’ shot you can see who’s constipated – Bruce. (From here, the text was heavily edited to protect the innocent.) Ha? Eh? Me? Don’t burn your bridges – nuke ’em.
Neurosurgeons are collectively super-conservative and stuffy. At our national convention a well known and well regarded colleague got up from the head table at the annual banquet. He pronounced the group to be staid and boring. And, then he proceeded to hang a spoon from his nose. (Bruce was president of his state medical society?) I have taken this to heart. Don’t ever think yourself too important. Stay humble and keep a sense of humor about you. Get a grip! Laugh, live, love. We are all here for a short time.
Correct etiquette is to say nothing. No one’s precious feelings will be hurt – to which I say, speak. I certainly have and there are those who wish I had not. Stories spin, the truth dies with you. It was never in my nature be quiet and proper. I never embraced the “big lie.” At least my point of view is not still a mystery.
Here is a trick that is easy to learn but maybe hard to do for some people. Historically it was taught to me at a Halloween banquet of our national organization, the Congress of Neurological Surgeons several decades ago. Since the banquet was on Halloween it was themed a costume ball. Henry Bartkowski and I wanted to participate in the theme but had not brought along anything of a costume. So we decided to attend as streakers. We slipped into the men’s room and removed our pants. Then dressed in the rest of our suit and tie, we pulled on our trench coats and attended bare legged. We were stopped at reception but showed our tickets and were admitted. You would have to understand that the more serious members of our organization came in ballroom period costumes from another century. Henry and I must have missed that memo.
On the dais was Roberto Heros and halfway through dinner he stood to make some extemporaneous remarks. “I have attended many of these banquets over the years. It has been my impression that they are entirely too stodgy.” He then promptly hung a spoon off his nose. The crowd applauded – some more enthusiastically than others. You may easily guess who’s side Henry and I were on.
Which brings me to the wedding I shot with my Canon G3. By this time old friends had all been exposed to my affection for humor. And naturally, Alex and Kathy joined in the spirit of the wedding celebration. I believe Alex had been drinking a bit. Kathy’s nose did not have the requisite anatomical configuration to achieve her goal without cheating. Look closely and you can try it at home or at a banquet. It’s your call.