You’d best be movin’ on.

I went over to Newport Center to the doctor to get fluids removed for the scienticians. On the way there I saw a car pull on to Coast Highway in front of me. Beat-up old early 80s Buick or something, one of those huge two-door American mistakes. There were a couple of pieces of furniture haphazardly roped to the roof and a frazzled looking couple of people inside. Tramp Family. They radiated disorganization, poverty, and sadness.

I thought as they went by that they were unusual for the shininess of that part of town. Almost anywhere else in America you wouldn’t even notice them unless the furniture fell off, but they were in the heart of the Wealth Star.

Went in, got poked with a needle, peed in a cup. As I left I saw that two Newport cop cars had pulled them over and they were doing the shame squat on the curb while an officer talked to them. Police around here don’t miss much.

Seeing pharmaceutical reps always reminds me how fucked-up that part of medicine is. I put chemicals into my face every day that are aggressively marketed to physicians by stewardessy young women with too much makeup on.

6 thoughts on “You’d best be movin’ on.

  1. tangential anecdote
    My favorite bit of pharma-marketing schwag I picked up during my mom’s nursing career was for a birth control pill. The item? A deck of playing cards.
    Folks I’m not sure this promotion is ‘on-message’…

    1. Okay, I see it
      So the marketing people are like this, right?
      They’re all “Well, everyone likes to play cards. And sometimes people play strip poker, right? And, like, when someone gets all naked, some people play so that person is still in but has to, like, do things if they lose more. So people get the cards and they’re playing, and someone’s naked, and they lose, and then comes the HEY WAIT A MINUTE GUY I DON’T WANT A KID and BAM they see our product name. PERFECT.”
      And the other guy is all “Good job. Let’s go get drunk.”

      1. Makes perfect sense to me.
        Maybe one was a woman, and they went and played strip poker afterwards. Or maybe the whole idea came FROM a game of strip poker. Or maybe….
        I got nuthin.

  2. I worked for a doctor’s office years ago. I never had to buy lunch because we’d have a different pharmaceutical rep in each afternoon to schmooze and they always brought food.

    1. Mmm, yeah. That was my first introduction to Indian food, actually. In fact, now that I think about it, pharmaceutical giveaways kept me in pens and paper all throughout high school. I just sort of took it for granted, because with both my parents employed at a hospital, we had tons and tons of random swag around the house.
      The actual representatives were very weird people.

  3. I used to love pharmaceutical rep lunches. They always brought good stuff. Some of my favorite gifts I got while being a nurse was
    1. The prop up Viagra calculator
    2. Lamisil (Foot fungus) cookies
    3. Claritin slinkys (I never understood that one)
    I noticed that most reps are young, moderately intelligent women looking to attract a wealthy doctor to marry and have babies with. The doctor I worked for married a rep and was always exceptionally hard on male reps. It was kind of sad- the girl reps would come in and he would smile and sign the paper. The guy reps would come in and he would argue with them about the chemical properties of their products, or the price, or the availability or whatever. One reason I’m not a nurse anymore.

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