Monday, June 16, 2008

Ghost Writer, don't blame me.

I had a great weekend.
Father's Day has come and gone and I did't even get a nap.
But back to the daily grind (wait, that is funny).
I went to the FNDC and have a whole bunch of stuff to write about but I wanted to give you the second of two blogs by a ghost writer.
AGD annual meeting in 4 weeks. I can't wait. Look are we going to have that BBQ at my house or not?
I look forward to meeting some of you.
Lastly, I watched the movie, Gone Baby Gone this weekend. I thought there were too many F-words and some tough stuff (like kidnapping of a 5 year old) but if you can get by all of that, it was very good.
But back to this blog.

In the spirit of my last blog, which was actually written months ago I’ll tell you that I’ve tried a few efforts to market the practice.

One of my patients is a wedding consultant who we encouraged to urge her clients to whiten teeth with us. Her incentive was $20 per whitening treatment. We special printed over 100 sheets for her to put into a binder she gives all of her clients.
The results have been dismal. We started in January and have zero patients from this effort.

Then, we sponsored a hole at a golf tournament. I took off an afternoon from teeth and sat under a tent giving away practice t-shirts, beer, sodas, bottled waters, peanuts, floss, toothbrushes, pamphlets, etc.
I knew a third of the golfers from being associated with the group. It’s been two months. Zero patients.

Ok, back to the future or back to now. I’m running off at the laptop again and a few events converged on Friday that gave me pause for reflection.

1) My wife is midway through her third pregnancy. We have two girls, ages 5 and 7.
At lunchtime on Friday we were going to learn the sex of our next kid. Long story short, it’s a boy!!!
I would have gladly accepted another girl. I’ve been there and done that and could do it again. But man, a boy!

2) Later in the afternoon as I’m picking up something for my father in law for Father’s Day I’m checking different radio stations and come across Sean Hannity speaking of Tim Russert in the past tense. Immediately I call my wife to check the news on TV and sure enough he’s collapsed and they were unable to revive him.

3) That evening I attended an alumni meeting for my dental school. I went to Maryland. I live in central Florida where I feel a million miles away from the life I knew in Baltimore. I look back fondly on those 4 years and feel I’ll never lose the affection I have for many of my classmates. Not to sound corny but they are like brothers to me although I only see them once a year at best.

I met with a group of much older dentists from my alma mater. Let me put it this way; I’m from the class of 1999. The next youngest guy graduated in the 60s.
A charismatic man by the name of Dr. Joseph Cappuccio spoke of the challenges and importance of maintaining a strong alumni presence. At the same time he expressed his disappointment in the general apathy and the change in mindset of younger dentists who are motivated more by the financial rewards of our profession than anything else.

Dr. Cappuccio was generalizing of course on what is an obvious trend in our culture.
I suppose his speech upset me and motivated me to become more active beyond my local study clubs and dental society.

We are all footnotes in a long drawn out story that is unfolding in our universe. I watched throughout the weekend as they honored the memory of Tim Russert. It seems he understood his role as a father and a son. He cherished both and seemed to get the importance of what his Dad had done for him. He was passing that on to his own son in a way that has caused me to reflect about what I should be doing in my relationship with my son in the years to come.

My own Dad passed away in 2005. I don’t believe a day goes by that my actions aren’t influenced in some way by the way he brought me up. Those of us who don’t have our Dad’s around anymore can only strive to live a life they hope their father’s would be proud of. Our Father’s Days are weird and can seem somewhat empty.

Ok, let me wrap this up before I bring everyone down even more.

It’s important to appreciate what your dental school did for you. They weren’t obligated to educate YOU. They took you in and spit out a dentist after 4 (you fill in the blank with your adjective of choice) years. What else would you be doing with your days or your life that could have such an impact everyday?

Being a Dad is an awesome responsibility and privilege.

We should be in awe of the enormous sacrifices made for us by our fathers to put us wherever we are now.

Finally, “Think of your forefathers! Think of your posterity!” maybe John Adams might have said this once?

I thought it was going to be all on marketing. But it just goes to show you that every dentist has lots going on in his or her life.
Just when you think dentistry is important, a good father and news guy drops dead at like 55 years old. It puts teeth a little down on the priority scale.
Thanks ghost writer.
See you Wednesday,

No comments:


PLEASE NOTE: When commenting on this blog, you are affirming that any and all statements, and parts thereof, that you post on “The Daily Grind” (the blog) are your own.

The statements expressed on this blog to include the bloggers postings do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD), nor do they imply endorsement by the AGD.