Thatll Happen in the Year 2000
ÓStu Silverstein, MD 1999
This is a Monumental Summer calling for Monumental Changes. It is the last summer of the Millennium and the last summer of the Clinton Presidency, although we who live close to New York will be hearing a lot more from the Clintons as they move their belongings up to New York. (Dont forget to pack the club!) (Cant wait to see Bill tell the guy cleaning his windshield with his sleeve that he feels his pain.) Bill may not like New York State since there are laws against Interns working longer than 24 hours, but Hillary will love it; most New Yorkers are too busy pulling gum off their shoes to notice her shredding documents into the East River. However somebody should remind her that wearing a Yankee hat just wouldnt cut it in the rest of the state, such as in places like Buffalo, where they dont particularly care for those of us who drop the Rs from words like Carpetbagga.
We are also seeing wholesale changes in Medicine. When will the Doctors form a Union? Thatll happen in the year 2000, is what we were told. Just in time for the celebration, the AMA announced they are forming a Doctors Union, a kinder gentler Union, since they promise to never actually call a strike. Good idea. It wouldnt be good PR to have someone cross a picket line and have their legs broken and repaired by the same person, or have some Doctor bragging to a Plumber at the Union Hall about the time he rearranged a celebritys face and billed and collected for the services rendered.
On a personal note, I turn 40. I always knew I would be entering my 40th year around the year 2000. Which meant that I would reach middle age at the turn of the century, which always seemed to be in the distant future. Anything thatll happen in the year 2000 was always too far in the future to pay any mind to. Until that time I could remain a kid and resist adulthood.
Basketball and Hockey are kids games and I have always remained faithful to these games and my blue-collar roots. Yeah, Ill play Golf in the year 2000 is what I always said. Even the prince song 1999 from the early 80s had a futuristic ring to it. Of course he is now the artist formerly known as Prince (My keyboard doesnt have the symbol for his name yet.) Clearly entering the year 2000 and my 40th year, will require wholesale changes in order to avoid feeling stagnant (AKA Mid Life Crisis.) For one thing, I am changing my name from Stu Silverstein to the Pediatrician formerly known as Prince. (I still have several months to come up with a symbol) and I will have to finally concede that I am actually an adult and defer to inevitable changes.
I decided that it was finally time to take up Golf. First thing I noticed was that this time around there were none of the little extras that helped me maintain my focus the last time I was on a Golf course: the windmill, the Clowns mouth and the free game on your Birthday. Golf was supposed to be a relaxed laid back game. I did not realize that there was pressure to finish up to allow the 300,000 members to get to your hole. They even have these guys driving by, pressuring you to move on. I didnt mind a little polite pressure, but was the Laser Gun really necessary? I did play hockey for several years and there were some cross over skills--I managed to hit one ball over a large water trap into the green. When I proudly headed over (actually arrogantly waddled over) to play the ball, I noticed I had actually hit a divot (a clump of grass covered dirt for the initiated) into the green. The actual ball was still sitting safely on the tee. No way to get out of that with dignity. I was then politely told it was proper etiquette to replace the divots to maintain the green. Problem was, everyone didnt share in this, and there were divots all over the place. Clearly this was not a game for the Obsessive Compulsive. I had to find the divot that matched the hole in the green I created. I even brought in an immunologist and had it cross-matched, if thats what it took. The same went for the Balls that I hit into the woods. I had to find the ball that I personally hit. Sure, I came back with a 23-gallon garbage bag full of other balls, but they were not my balls (pardon the metaphor). Taking 2 hours at one hole to do this did not sit well with the Golf Police and thats when they raced by and chalked my backside. After that, the rest of the game was simple (although I plan more time on the driving range with the Divot proof Astro turf.)
Now that I have played Golf, I feel ready to face my 40's. Now it is time to turn my attention to another passion. I am actively working as a volunteer for the Elizabeth Dole Campaign. No, I am not disclosing my political views--I actually know nothing about her views on anything of importance. As a Comedian and humorist I just want to see Bob Dole as First Lady -- the jokes would just write themselves and that would leave more time to spend on the Golf course. It could happen. I can still hear my social studies teacher, Mr. Lichenstein, say "if you want to see a woman elected president in this country, you'll have to wait until the year 2000."
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