I am feeling grumpy and miserable today because of CANCER.

I told my receptionist that our slow times are August and from Thanksgiving to New Year's. Everyone is running around trying to pack in all the summer stuff and holiday stuff and they do not want to come to the doctor. Then in September and January they all come in: "I've been sick for a month!" Yeah, yeah, and now you want me to wave a magic wand.

But....not happening. Call from friend yesterday over in Seattle: the biopsy showed that his cancer is back and big and they took him to surgery and now they are waiting for the pathology and talking chemo again. Third recurrence, I think. An 85 year old patient that I really liked died last Monday, in hospice, esophageal cancer. Another friend has a test next week and a woman is over in Seattle for a big surgery, a big tumor. We don't know yet if it is benign or malignant. One breast biopsy came out ok, so that's one in five. I think we have one appointment left between now and December 24th and I did see a person in the afternoon on Tuesday. And my stupid furnace at home died after 37 years and so it's chilly. We have baseboard electric in the downstairs, so we are not freezing. It's just annoying, though not unexpected. Everything falls apart eventually.

I am not EVER seeing mild coughs and colds. Nope: three with pertussis, a systemic strep A, two chronic hepatitis C and one chronic hepatitis B. And if they have a cough, they are coming in when they've had it for 6-8 weeks or more. People are really sick and influenza has not even hit yet, though the map is starting to change color: http://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/usmap.htm. Get your flu vaccine. And it takes two weeks to take effect, so get it now, before everyone flies around for the holidays and spreads it all over.....