Archives for posts with tag: money

I’m an internal medicine doctor, which means I see adult patients in Baltimore. Today I saw one of my favorite patients. She has chronic pain and a particular gastrointestinal syndrome which leads to frequent hospitalizations. Both make it very difficult, and really — in practicality — impossible for her to work. Her disability is taking a while to come through, because “chronic pain” and “back pain” are too often not considered as “real disease” by the powers that be. She can’t afford many of her prescriptions because she lacks an income. She might get evicted any day.

I realized today what medical intervention would help her the most.

You know what prescription she needs?

Money. She needs money.

Our lot is to lack little
and prod our sleepy guilt.
We count our money, ready
to bristle at our greed.
Do we have smaller bills?
Is stagnant cash our bile?

A mailing list I subscribe to sent out the latest in a number of requests that go like this: “My grandfather wrote a book, and I’m sure my family and many other people would love to hear how he [taught an ass to read Aleinu/survived his brother’s wedding/asked his relatives for money/started a thriving underworld concern]. Would anyone like to help us in this project?”

Did you notice what didn’t get mentioned there? Money. I don’t translate for money any more, but let me point out that professional translators – including those who specialize in family letters or personal memoirs – do a better job than amateurs. If your grandfather expected anyone to read his memoirs at all, he would rather they be translated by someone who knows what they’re doing. 

Similarly, if you want your carbenes synthesized, spleen removed, spacecraft designed, script read, or bread baked, you are better off going to a professional. They will probably not do this work for free.