A retrospective look at 3 years, 200+ entries, and a whole lot of booze & tears

Once in a while I’ll do these retrospective posts after reading some of the old entries that I have made.  Think of it as a “Final Thoughts” like Jerry Springer does (only this is FAR from my final thought).  This isn’t a space filler so the site will have new content for you to read when I’m short on rants *ahem* but some deep thoughts from yours truly.

I have painted a colorful picture of Pharmacy.  I have exposed all of the crap, the drama, and the daily pain that pharmacy schools pretend don’t exist or your pharmacist cant talk about while in the store.  Despite how much of an asshole you think I am, or wonder how or why I’m even a pharmacist, you too have gotten a clear idea of what goes on behind that counter.  You have realized that we are more than just pill counters and the ignorant bitches of doctors.  Other pharmacists realize that they are not alone in the sea of stupidity with sparse slowly-sinking lifeboats littered about that we all tightly clench onto.

But what really makes doing this whole blogging thing worth while (along with keeping my sanity, god knows its not the ad revenue check – $1 menu here I come) is that some of you out there will look at your pharmacist with a new light.  I hope its a positive light (and not think that we’re all a bunch of raging assholes).  I hope you’ll be more understanding when things don’t go correctly or smoothly and once in a while give us a thanks (or a box of candy, we love candy.  Booze also works well too).

I’ve been reading the Raging Server (http://www.ragingserver.com), and doing so has given me a whole new respect to Waiters/Waitresses/Waitripeople.  They deal with the same shit that I deal with, so I tip better because of it.  I wish other people in other professions would write what their day is /really/ like so we can get an understanding of how their jobs are similar to ours and would give us just a tiny bit more restraint before we blow up at them for doing something that we don’t like.

Just a thought.  Fuck Perdue and Liberty Medical.

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24 Comments

  1. Josh says:

    I completely agree, I suppose that I never gave much though to what my pharmacist actually does. I was always polite and easy to deal with. However, I have; over the past 2 years developed a rather complicated condition, and consequently visit my favorite people in the white coats at least once a week. I would like to say thank you to all of the pharmacists out there. You do me a service, and one you cant . I’m careful about my medications and don’t ingest anything I don’t have a basic grasp of. I can only imagine all of those people out there who don’t have a clue. Again thanks. Your profession deserves the credit for being on the actual front line.

  2. Rick says:

    Today, you made me laugh. As a pharmer with a Mom that was a server for 50 years it’s true that we all need an understanding of what other folks go though during their respective days. Please please please let there not me a drug rep blog. I may gag.

  3. http://openid.aol.com/PrePharmDStudent says:

    Ok TAP
    You may be a raging A-hole (wiser people than I will have to determine that)- BUT – I have learned the following things from reading your column:
    1. Put the cell phone down when going to the pharmacy counter.
    2. Use the automated refill call-in line!
    3. If I have any questions about my meds- interactions, dosings or “can I take X with Y?” – PLEASE ask the pharmacist – when the Pharm asks “So, do you have any questions?”. They have a ton of education and are probably pretty happy to answer a med-related question.
    4. Respect the time of the pharmacist and his/her techs.
    5. And finally – if there’s a problem with my insurance (haven’t been there yet, thank goodness! But when it happens -) talk *politely* with the pharmacist to try to get it resolved. And for me not to be afraid to call the insurance weinees on my own – hey, it’s my insurance plan, right?
    Because of your page, I now see my pharmacist in a whole new light.
    Thanks, TAP!

  4. Big chickie says:

    I know you won’t post it cause your mad about some shit I wrote you @@ Boo hoo…. But I will admit it, you are right, I do treat my pharmacists different. I do have more respect for them and more patience with them

  5. one_angry_tech says:

    We appreciate it dude, and yeah.. fuck Liberty Medical.. someone tried to get their test strips at our pharamcy the other day.. yeah. no.

  6. Sean says:

    Do you have diaBEEETUS? Are you on Medicare? FUCK YOU LIBERTY!!!

  7. Mark says:

    Hey TAP,
    I’d just like to say that the moment I stumbled across your blog, I realized that the problems I had were not faced by myself alone.
    And it’s a good feeling…..suffering gets lighter the more it’s shared around.
    Keep on kicking ass, man!

  8. James says:

    I am totally digging your rants/experiences, but I have only been visiting for three days soo.
    I hope it isn’t all bad, I am going to college as a Pre-Pharm major in August and hope it gets at least somewhat better(for yours and my sake.) But what the hell, I have been in retail for a year already(Circuit City Sales) and want to kill the people that come into the store who demand the best for the cheapest and bitch about any add-on whatsoever.

  9. the little tech that does..... says:

    I love your stuff. Keep tellin’ it like it is!

  10. jen says:

    FWIW, your posts have definitely changed my assumptions about the pharmacy counter . . . . Not that I’m a raging b**** to start with, but I do find it easier to accept a delay if I have an idea *why* there’s a delay . . .

  11. Jim Howard says:

    Blogs like yours and WaiterRant make me really appreciate my job as computer programmer. I can go for days and never talk to a single human!

  12. kim says:

    Hi TAP,
    I love my pharmacist. Although she does work at the dreaded Walgreens, she’s not an autobot or an asshole. She even makes my husband’s compounds without bitching or sending him to you. :)
    I am on 9 different meds for my Lupus and back problems. I never call in for early refills, I never lose my scripts, I never have my scripts stolen (they’re locked up in a lock box at my house) and I have never raised my voice at my pharmacist. I like her and I think she likes me. I come in every month, just once a month, with my nine scripts, and I come back to pick them up the next day. I try to be a nice person.
    Thanks to you I realize when I first moved here and came into the pharmacy with a script for #120 Vicoprofen and #90 60mg Morphine ER from my old doctor in my old state, I understand why my new pharmacist looked at me the way she did. We even laugh about it now. I’ve told her about your site. I asked her about glucometers and if the ones she looks at are always covered in biohazard and she laughed knowingly.
    Anyway, thank you for your blog. As a regular at my pharmacy, I have seen some of what you’ve described. My favorite was the 90 pound woman with 2 scripts from the ER, an antibiotic and some tylenol 3. She couldn’t afford both of them, so I won’t make you guess which she picked. The huge abscess on her arm sure looked like it could have used an antibiotic…but whatever.
    :) Again thanks.

  13. rph3664 says:

    I worked in restaurants for 15 years before I became a pharmacist, and not long ago, a woman I know who assistant-managed a Steak & Shake asked me, “How do you know so much about fast food? I thought you were a pharmacist.”
    I replied, “I am, but I haven’t always been, and the jobs are not as different as you might think.”
    But the pay’s a heckuva lot better!

  14. Retail Rph says:

    That bit about being in the sea of stupidity with the slowly-sinking lifeboats really got to me, been reading your blog for a few mos now & hello I am the one with the bright yellow swimmies on & fending off circling sharks with bottle of vodka & cranberry. Ahoy there matey ha ha!
    Here I am after another understaffed day at work, drinking myself into sweet sweet oblivion, Eminem raging my Itunes, trying not to think about the Rx’s I rushed through too fast — trying to forget that the schedule for tomorrow is even worse than today’s. Man alive. Pharmacy careers are maybe just a magnet for those of us with underlying mental/social issues. Whatever, it pays real good. & they don’t seem to mind if you show up with a hangover, as long as you show up. Or not, even.

  15. …and, please, NEVER tap your fingers on the counter while waiting for a prescription. Sit ye’ down, and wait like a lady or a gentleman (if you consider yourself one of either). One tap of each finger adds five minutes to the time you will be waiting.

  16. Lipstick says:

    Congrats! I love your blog and am always amused. I am totally impressed with how you write about work. I couldn’t do it…I would stay fired up all the time.

  17. phunnypharm says:

    As I was counseling the gazillionth person in a row at the drive-up and thinking I should wear a colorful paper “McDrugs” hat I thought of TAP and realized that I’m not alone. Crazy, tired, cranky, but not alone in the insanity of retail phcy…keep up the good work.

  18. nurse-guy says:

    TAP
    Thanks for all you do. I

  19. Shalom (R.Ph.) says:

    @OldApothecary: They only tap their fingers? I should be so lucky. Around here, they tap their credit card, or worse, their medicaid card. They must think it’s like cracking a whip at a recalcitrant horse or something. I have had fed-up techs snap, “That’s not a door, stop knocking on it!”
    And back in the R*te A*d days, I hung a sign once that read “Notice to customers. If you wait at the counter jingling your keys at me, your prescription will take 10 minutes longer.” Unfortunately due to my wanting to not be fired, I had to put the sign where the customers couldn’t see it, but it made *me* feel better…

  20. nobody says:

    I’d write about my profession, but people would simply rant back that I’m an overpaid fucking babysitter.

  21. nobody says:

    p.s. Some of us already knew what life as a pharm boy was like–pharms have gfs, bfs, family, friends,…

  22. whyamihere says:

    Hey, TAP: Just got out & working for a corpo grocery pharmacy & one of my friends told me about your site. Have been browsing for a couple of days & I love it. I read the post about DB & the comments on “you should be in a different profession b/c you need to have compassion to be a pharmacist.” Gag me with a rubber spoon! How can I have compassion when druggies are lyin’ to me all the time! With this much traffic, I doubt you keep up with all the comments, but thanks for the catharsis… BTW, was a server in college & now I have to check out the ragingserver site…

  23. Hey TAP:
    After Laughing my ass off reading your blog, I realized what a bitch I’d been to my pharmacist a couple of times–sorry Safeway Dude! Won’t happen again!
    And…you totally inspired me. Check out The Irate Principal Blog–hopefully I’ll make you laugh too!
    Keep up the raggin’ and the ragin’!
    By the way, I too was a server through college. Raging Server was great too!
    TIP (http://irateprincipal.blogspot.com)

  24. Random says:

    Love the blog… I’ve been contemplating ranting a bit myself, but I don’t have enough time to write on my normal life, much less the rest.
    @TIP: would love to read your blog, I’m an assistant principal and figure that we’d be able to swap a few stories.

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