The Obscure Starbucks & The Security Guy

I am at a University library. I just got done with the section on Cardiovascular Drugs (Pharmacology) on Lippincott. The USMLEWorld QBank on Pharmacology (Cardiovascular) awaits me soon after I type in what I wanted to share today.

Before I headed out here, I stopped by at the neighborhood grocery store to get some lunch. Sinfully deep fried chicken, buttery rich mashed potatoes, refreshing coleslaw, and a diet Dr. Pepper. Ah, nourishment for the Monday study. This grocery had a rather comfortable general seating/cafe/diner area upstairs with a Starbucks somewhat hidden in a corner which also has an outdoor sitting. I skipped the overpriced latte today and obtained my caffeine dose from the can of soda I got. As I was in the middle of my drink, I sat on the patio under the wave of the sunny warmth for a short while and did a head start with my reading for the day.

I finished a chapter and opened another, I thought I’d continue on till I finish my drink and get ready to proceed to the library for the rest of it. As I was learning Chapter 20, a security guy comes along and sits on the next table and wrote on his paper on a clipboard. I continued with my mumbling (to myself while reading) of the Drugs Affecting Blood to myself and committing to memory. And finally, I downed the last drop of sugar-caffeine-carbon water, folded my chapters (I tear out my book chapters) and fanned myself before I stood to go. And the man in a security uniform in the next table started talking to me. He asked me what I was studying for. I’d rather be brief in these cafe’ conversations. I said, “I’m studying for some licensures.” Then he said, “Great! Nursing?” I answered, “Medicine.” He replied, “You can do it! Yes you can!” What followed was a wonderful snippet of his mother’s life. His mother was a Nurse. “My mother was a R.N. for 38 years! She had me when she was 15 and she quit school. My father then broke up with her. She worked as a Nursing Assistant for so many years before that. Then she met a man who became my step father and he asked her one day if she was tired of earning pennies and if she wants to do something more. After that she enrolled in a Nursing school. She walked through that examination just like that! She did it! And you can too!” He sounded like a subdued minister on the pulpit. It was surreal. He went on, “You’re gonna be doctor?” I nodded in reply, smiled, and said, “Sometimes, I worry.” (Heck, it just felt good saying that. My brain is probably frying under the sweltering heat. But I was truly a bit worried. I mean, who wouldn’t for a big test like this?) Then he said, “Oh! Don’t you be worried! You can do it! I know you can do it! Worry is something you don’t want to do. I do that before too. I sit by myself and worry. Tell yourself you can do it and you can. By worrying you’ll just cloud your mind and mess up on the day you take your test. Don’t worry and you’ll just walk through that test I’m telling you! You can do it, sister! There are worse things than that test. You’ve gotten over some bigger things than that! (pause) Haven’t you?” I said, “Yes.” So he went on again, “Well there you go! And that is why you can do this, sister! You’ll walk through that test and you’ll do fine. You’re gonna get there.” More nods and smiles from me. And a nice remembrance about prayer from the man with a post script about Star Trek’s Nurse Chapel and Captain Kirk. After all that I said my thanks to him for that moment of inspiration. And that truly lightened up my day. It was wonderful. I then packed my stuff and went on with my day feeling lighter and less of the self absorption that is the MLE. 😉

Okay, this is the part where I insert my pretentiously dramatic black and white photograph. I don’t have one from today but I found one taken from some weeks ago.



And this is the part where I have to end this post and get on with my studying.