Monday, September 19, 2011

517. My New Top-Secret Job

I started my new top-secret job recently. I can’t tell you exactly what it is, but I am at liberty to reveal that I work in a medical facility. I noticed on my very first day that pretty much all the medical-type people are wearing scrubs, and even though my particular job would not typically be classified as “medicalish,” I decided to take a chance and ask my supervisor if it would be okay if I wore scrubs, too.

My supervisor thought about my request for an appropriate amount of time (two seconds, possibly three) then said decisively, “I don’t care one way or another.”

That means I get to wear scrubs!

Have you ever worn scrubs? They’re like pajamas!

I immediately went out and bought a couple of sets. I was ultra-worried that the uniform people at the Uniform Selling Place would ask for my non-existent medicalish ID badge before letting me walk into the store and try on anything. Nope. I thought the clerk would say, “Ma’am? I need a notarized letter from your boss and a copy of your last three paychecks verifying that you do, indeed, work in a medical kind of place.” She didn’t. Instead, she said, “We take Visa, Mastercard, American Express, personal checks with a valid driver’s license, and layaway.”

I’m not sure why she mentioned the layaway part. Have you priced scrubs lately? I spent more on a grande triple latte Frappuccino this morning than I paid for the scrubs.

The Husband was irritated when I got home from the Uniform Selling Place.  He took one look at the bulging shopping bag and said, “Oh, God, what sort of scheme is it this time?”

“I told you, I was picking up my new uniform.”

“Uniform? Ha! Uniform makes it sound like that’s what they wanted you to wear. You casually mention to your supervisor that you want to wear scrubs and they say whatever, and next thing you know—more random clothes clogging up your closet.”

“These are not random clothes. These are my scrubs.” I said the word scrubs like one might say diamond tiara if one were, say, Princess Kate Middleton.

Sure enough, the other parents at the bus-stop noticed my officially officialish medicalia attire right away.

“Halloween is not for a few more weeks, right?” I heard one bus-stop mom whisper to another.

“This is not a costume,” I corrected. (Working in the medical building doing important non-medical things had apparently enhanced my hearing.) “I work in a medical facility.”

I could tell by the rapt expression on her face she was waiting for me to elaborate. She wanted me to say something like, “I am secretly a podiatrist,” or “I perform open-heart surgery on my days off from the high-end kitchen store,” or “I am studying to be a manicurist at a fancy day spa.”

Instead, I gave her an enigmatic smile, a smile that said, Hon, you can fill in the blanks for yourself.

A new level of respect surrounded me at the bus-stop, a level that reverberated, “MOV is obviously super-duper-magruper smart, because she works at some sort of medical kind of office, and she wears scrubs!”

I braced myself for the questions that I knew would follow, questions like, “MOV, Tyler’s had a nasty cough for over a week, do you think it’s bronchitis?” or “Could you give me a second opinion on this suspicious mole on my ankle?” or “Does this mean you won’t be driving the soccer carpool on Thursday afternoons anymore?”

Even though I was armed with answers to those questions (yes, no, yes), they knew better than to use up all their questions the very first time they saw me in uniform. They decided to pace themselves and save most (okay: all) of their questions for another day.

I spent the better part of 20 minutes lovingly ironing my precious scrubs this evening so they would be spectacularly medically beauteous for tomorrow morning.

“You know you can just toss those in the dryer on high and all the wrinkles will come out on their own?” inquired The Husband helpfully right when I was finishing up. “I thought that is why you bought them: the minimal care required.”

The Husband does know me well. I like things with minimal care required, things like invisible dogs and second homes that don’t exist but The Husband and I talk about as if they do (“Oh, sorry, I’d love to help out on that school volunteer project fundraiser, but we’ll actually be at our second home in Portugal that week.”) But he forgot one crucial detail: Looking smart trumps minimal care.

I just went online and ordered a new accessory I figure I can wear every day with my scrubs: a stethoscope.



  1. When I worked at a veterinary hospital I also wore scrubs. And was fully qualified to answer questions about worms, anal sacs and fecal samples. I was known as the "Fecal Queen" as I was able to talk numerous owners into getting their puppy's precious poopy checked for parasites. It is a title not many can hold... I understand the responsibility that comes with the wearing of scrubs. Wear them well, my friend, wear them well.

  2. Lori E (uh, "Fecal Queen"),

    Who knew there was such a things as "upselling" when it comes to doggy poopy. I will now be suspicious when I take my beloved cat to the vet and they try to convince me to get her toenails painted yet again for "health reasons." I now will shake my head and say, "Is that absolutely necessary? I don't want to fall for your $322 vanity/ upselling schemes this time!"

    And thank you, also, Lori E, for the passing of the baton, or in this case, the elastic/ drawstring waistband. I will do my best to uphold the high standards implied with the wearing of the scrubs.


  3. First, congratulations for your new secret job.
    I had to check on Wikipedia to see what scrubs really are. Beware of backpackers! (see Wikipedia on scrubs..)
    With such low maintenance outfit you'll still have plenty of time to write, good for us!

    Viel spaß,

  4. Please tell me that you aren't wearing Crocs with your new uniform? I hate the Crocs.

  5. or white antistatic Birkenstocks?

  6. Oh yeah. Antistatic. Forget antiseptic and anesthesia and something else. Antistatic is the new thing so you don't zap your patient.

    -Aspiring Falconer Motaki

  7. As a person who has worn scrubs for many years as a requirement (and was always jealous of people who worked in real clothes) -- when you HAVE to wear them it means you have a very busy, constantly on the move, and likely to get all sorts of human byproducts on them type of job -- kinda takes the "fun" out of it. Also -- when you realize that men and women kinda look the same in them?!...... Anyway, enjoy wearing your "pajamas" and good luck at new job.

  8. I too am a scrub wearing person...I don't like that we all look the same...but I LOVE the comfort. (I don't even have to launder mine) So I get really cool and crazy socks to be different.
    Question is: have you delved into scrub jackets too?

  9. I love Princess Catherine and scrubs! Both of which couldn't be any further from my world. Congrats! They have some pretty swishy scrubs out there these days MOV. Have you gotten your new clogs yet???

  10. MOV, I have had a long and secret longing to wear scrubs to work. It's highly frowned upon for a teacher, so it will have to remain a distant dream.

    I'm so glad to hear you're enjoying your super top secret new medicalish job. Will you ever tell us what you're doing?

  11. Bytheway, MOV-ee... i have a secret. a game that would be perfect for you. you can build things. whatever you want to build. out of dozens of different materials. try it out. just our little secret.
    -Ninja Motaki

  12. And, in other news, MOV, I nominated you for a Versatile Blogger award today. Stop on over and share the love!

    Things like this seem to be going around lately.

  13. MOV: pls get the ones from Grey's Anatomy. Then you will look smart AND impress the women at the bus stop even more. Perhaps they will ask you for future info on Meredith and Derek, and you can be all "oh, I'm not at liberty to comment on that until I talk with SHONDA about it first". It can only enhance your credibility.

    Also, the only acceptable shoes to wear with scrubs are DANSKO clogs.

  14. ok, where do I begin?

    Véronique, thank you for the well wishes on the new job!

    Motaki, Falconer?!? this is new........

    Anonymous, I know in my heart you are right. I am in the honeymoon stage with my scrubs. I used to feel that way about my flight attendant (sky godess?) uniform and suitcase (!), and then one day all of a sudden I thought, bleh! polyester uniform!

    Lunch Lady, way too soon for scrub jackets. will keep you posted!

    Patty, yikes, clogs. had not even thought of that. they look comfy too, will I ever put on normal clothes again after taking the Comfort Cruise in this attire? I hesitate to tell you I bought........... KEDS tennies because I had no idea what I was supposed to wear on my feet! I almost forgot to buy anything for my feet and went to work in just socks.

    bluespeckledpup, I will tell you what my job is. soon. but not today. soon! promise.

    motaki, my skitterish spam-phobic computer will not let me open your link. since I had to pay 200 bucks to scrub (pardon the pun) my computer at xmas, am reluctant to re-live that nightmare. I am sure it is a cool game, and I am a loser who is missing out! =O

    bluespeckledpup, I am honored. Although I do not know what versatile means. I looked it up and all I could find was stuff about Versace and stuff about tile (specifically kitchen and bathroom tile). This leads me to assume that you want to give me an award for tiling someone's kitchen while wearing Versace. I am not sure how you found out about that, but I appreciate the accolades, and your shout-out blog is coming soon (next week or so, need some time to make brilliance happen). thank you!!! (although my blog follower count has DROPPED since you listed me, does this mean people are seeing me tile kitchens in Versace on You-tube and realizing I am bad at it and de-following me?!?)

    amy, I sooooo tried on the Grey's Anatomy ones and even mentioned something about SHONDA (to try to get a discount), lo and behold, the pants of the scrubs ride low on my, uh, bottom. In other news, I might be applying for a plumber job soon. Glad to know about the DANSKO clogs, I feel like a bit of a slob now with my impostor wanna-be KEDS.

    love to all!!!!!!!!!!


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