2850: Doctor's Office
Title text: "The police told me I can't be a doctor, but whenever they show up I just go into the Google Maps settings page I found and change the house to 'Police Headquarters' and then they have to do what I say."
In this comic, Beret Guy has discovered how to add public labels to locations on Google Maps. He has used the tool to label his house as a physician's office, and then proceeded to put on a white lab coat and impersonate a physician, making this another comic with one of his special businesses.
As Cueball arrives for a medical consultation, Beret Guy proceeds to do what he does best -- try to sound like a professional through absurdist, oddball dialogue:
|Beret Guy||Normal Phrasing||Notes|
|"Welcome to the doctor!"||"Welcome to my clinic."||Most real outpatient clinics in the US have desk staff that welcome patients, not the physicians themselves. Doctors don't sit behind a desk waiting for patients to arrive.|
|"We're like librarians, but for your bones and blood."||A real doctor wouldn't proactively define their profession to a new patient. If they did so, they might say: "We are trained medical professionals who diagnose and treat illness, provide healthcare advice, and help maintain overall health in our patients."||"Bones and blood" is just one focus of medical education, covering topics like their anatomy and physiology, pathology of related diseases, principles of hematology and orthopedics, clinical diagnosis, and treatment strategies. "Librarian" is not an apt analogy for this knowledge.|
|"Uh-oh! This beeper says you're too hot."||"It seems your temperature is elevated according to this thermometer."|
|"You should eat some of these little snacks that make you colder."||"I recommend you take some of these fever-reducing medications."||Beret Guy has the medicine already in his hand, suggesting he has only one remedy for whatever condition the patient presents with. Also, in US outpatient care settings it's usually nurses who administer medicine, not doctors, and in either case an order would usually have to be written first. This depends on the medication; in some cases the doctor will have been provided with free samples by the manufacturer, for example.|
|"We can make holes in you, but you have to fill out this form first."||"We need to perform a procedure that requires an incision, or use a syringe and needle to either give you an injection or take a blood sample. But before we proceed, you'll need to provide consent by filling out this form."||An incision for a febrile (high temp) patient is not unheard of; it might be needed to address conditions such as abscess drainage, acute appendicitis, an infected wound or gallbladder, or other infections requiring surgical intervention. Injections of antibiotics might also be appropriate to treat a bacterial infection causing a fever, and an injection of an anti-inflammatory could relieve a fever. Taking a blood sample to investigate the cause of an illness is common. However, it would be unusual and clinically suspect to proceed immediately to any of these based solely on a high temperature reading, without any further diagnostics -- even such simple diagnostics as talking with the patient.|
In the third panel, Beret Guy then hands Cueball what's supposed to be a medical consent form, but is in fact a New York Times crossword puzzle for a Monday on a clipboard. Monday NYT crosswords are the easiest of the week; New York Times crosswords get more challenging over the week, with Saturday being hardest (Sunday's grid is larger, but has about the same difficulty as Thursday). Beret Guy amusingly misinterprets Cueball's hesitance as being about the difficulty of the crossword.
In the fourth panel, Cueball finally questions whether Beret Guy's claim is accurate, and the facts of the situation are revealed - while Beret Guy wheels in a device labeled "MRI" (for "magnetic resonance imaging"). He wonders aloud what the MRI is for and excitedly predicts that it is loud.
- Most MRI machines are huge and cannot be wheeled in by one person on a dolly. They're typically housed within dedicated rooms and require specialized infrastructure to support their weight, shield their powerful magnetic fields, and maintain their functionality. So either:
- this is just one piece of an MRI machine
- it's mislabeled
- it's a small MRI of the kind used to scan only one part of the body at a time, e.g. an ankle or knee; this is called a "bedside low-field MRI" and has a weak magnetic field
- "MRI" stands for something else in this case.
- Beret Guy is exercising one of his strange powers.
- And MRI machines are indeed very loud, known for producing banging sounds and other noises, often reaching up to 100 decibels, due to the rapid switching of their magnetic field gradients during scans. To protect their hearing and reduce discomfort, patients are typically provided with earplugs or headphones.
In the title text, Beret Guy acknowledges that the police repeatedly turn up to look into his 'clinic', but each time he heads off their investigations by returning to Google Maps and relabelling his house "Police Headquarters", thus (by implication) making himself Chief of Police to whose authority the officers must submit - which he may also believe removes evidence for any charges of "impersonating a physician". If this works as claimed, it's another of the strange powers of Beret Guy. But this strategy is unlikely to work in real life; suggesting a Google Maps edit can can take several days to be approved by Google Maps editors, and "Police Headquarters" is not a category selection open to everyday users.
- [Beret Guy is sitting at a desk, wearing a lab coat. Cueball is walking in from the right as Beret Guy stretches an arm out towards him in greeting.]
- Beret Guy: Welcome to the doctor!
- Beret Guy: We're like librarians, but for your bones and blood.
- [In a frame-less panel Beret Guy is standing in front of Cueball while holding a device in his hand, which are attached with a coiling wire to a thermometer in Cueball's mouth. He reads something of the device while holding a pill bottle in the other hand.]
- Beret Guy: Uh-oh! This beeper says you're too hot.
- Beret Guy: You should eat some of these little snacks that make you colder.
- [Zoom in on the two persons where Beret Guy is holding a pen up towards Cueball who is holding a clipboard with a newspaper page stuck to it. Cueball is looking down at the page, which has a black picture in the top left corner and lots of unreadable lines across the rest of the page.]
- Beret Guy: We can make holes in you, but you have to fill out this form first.
- Cueball: This is a New York Times crossword.
- Beret Guy: Don't worry, it's a Monday, so it's not too hard.
- [Cueball is watching as Beret Guy drags in a machine labeled "MRI" on a dolly.]
- Cueball: This is a doctor's office, right?
- Beret Guy: Yeah! It used to be my house, but I found the setting on Google Maps to change it.
- Beret Guy: Hey, wanna help find out what this box does? I bet it's loud!
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