Monday, February 11, 2008
i r surgeon
in a recent post i touched on hierarchy in theater. it is necessary, but unfortunately it also adds to the notorious reputation of surgeons.
i have worked with arrogant bombastic surgeons who have blown their top during operations and shouted at and blamed everyone except themselves. i have even gotten angry with them, but i always held my tongue. you see even if i didn't respect them, i respected the institution that is theater.
in theater there can be only one voice of authority and that is the voice of the surgeon. often surgeons don't understand this. they think they are in charge because it is their right or because they are so cool or some other deficient logic. i always imagine a governator voice saying:
"i r surgeon! you must comply!"
but that is not what it is about. in the end it all boils down to the patient. everything that is done is done for the benefit of the patient. the cleaner in the back who gets the instruments ready does it for the patient. the sister who crisply palms instruments to the surgeon on his demand does it for the patient, not because he is so cool (although if he is a surgeon he is probably cool).
when the surgeon demands silence it is because his knife is poised precariously above the ivc and he needs to focus all his attention. when the surgeon demands silence, it is not for him, but for the patient. and for the patient, he had better get his silence.
there is also the aspect of respect, not so much for who he is but what he is. but once again, many surgeons misunderstand this. respect is a two way street. i believe i as a surgeon can't expect respect from the sister or the anaesthetist unless i respect them for what they are. even the assistant i will always respect.
so in conclusion, i am not the type of surgeon who says "i r surgeon! you must comply!" but when i'm in theater i do expect a very high level of excellence from everyone there. the hierarchy must be maintained.