Monday was a pretty frantic afternoon here, and Mary had to leave 15 minutes early to meet with her son's teacher. Since I was done with patients, and to procrastinate on dictations, I pulled out the old machine and installed the new, shiny, credit card gadget.
I tested it (it works) and on the way home tossed the old machine in the environmentally-friendly electronic recycling dumpster at Local Electronics Store.
So Tuesday morning Mary comes in, and runs back to my office. She looked frantic.
Mary: "Where's the old machine?!"
Dr. Grumpy: "I installed the new one last night."
Mary: "WHERE'S THE OLD MACHINE?!!!"
Dr. Grumpy: "I put it in the recycling dumpster down the street."
Mary: "I DIDN'T BATCH OUT AND CLEAR IT LAST NIGHT! I WAS IN A HURRY AND FIGURED I'D DO IT THIS MORNING!!!"
Dr. Grumpy: "Calm down, I mean, how much could be in it? 10 or 20 bucks?"
Dr. Grumpy: "WHAT?!!!"
Mary: "You had a few cash-pay patients yesterday, and..."
Dr. Grumpy: "Is my first one here yet?"
I grabbed my coat and yelled to Pissy's staff we'd be back in a few minutes. Mary and I ran to my car, and drove over to the dumpster.
Someone had left the lid open overnight, and so there was snow on the pile of computer monitors, old hard drives, iPods, and cell phones. In conduct unbecoming a neurologist, I climbed into the dumpster and frantically dug through the snow (forgot my gloves at the office, too). Several downtown homeless people stopped to watch, and one kindly yelled that there weren't any cans in there.
I found the machine, tossed it to Mary, climbed out, and we sped back to the office.
While I was with the first patient Mary transmitted billing from the old doodad and wiped its memory.
My patient asked why I didn't have my usual Diet Coke on my desk. I told her I didn't need it.