Pill Pushers: A Cut above the Rest

My sister and her family have come all the way from Arizona to visit Canada and lounge around in lovely weather.

The day they got here was hot, hot, hot outside.  We grilled dinner on our back deck, ate corn on the cob, and pretty much lived it up in a drunk-on-summertime stupor.

That night, we were awoken at 4:30 a.m. by the second loudest crack of thunder I’ve heard in the last 22 years.  It was pouring rain, and we haven’t seen the sun since.

It’s chilly outside; our plans to spend hours lounging by the pool have been thwarted to the max.  Instead, we’re bundling up in our warmest clothes, making hamburger soup for dinner, and drinking hot cocoa in place of lemonade.  Hot chocolate, in August?  I never would have thought.  Winter is coming, winter is coming!  Stupid August.

Anyway, the Arizonans were so unprepared for the extreme change in weather, they didn’t even pack sweaters for themselves.  (“We should’ve known,” they joke, “that we can’t come to Canada and not bring our parkas.  How stupid.” Now they’ll never want to come back for a visit.)

Consequently, three out of five members of this household are hacking up their lungs.  We’ve all got colds in this House of Sickness, and we’ve made no less than three trips to the pharmacy in as many days.

I like going to the pharmacy, actually.  While I lived in Belgium, I learned that nine times out of ten, people there go to the pharmacist for medical advice before even thinking about talking to a doctor.  I had a few opportunities in Belgium to try it myself, and found I quite liked the one-on-one personal experience.  Since I’ve grown up (in the loosest sense of the word) and moved to Canada, I’ve gotten into the habit of consulting with local pharmacists any time Poor Kyle and I are in need of medical attention.

Pharmacist Ten bucks says this man is not a real pharmacist at all, but some man paid to look like one just because of that distinguished-looking dimple in his chin.  Image from here.

Have you ever asked a pharmacist about his or her medical recommendations?  If not, I suggest you try it the next time you’re ailing.  You’ll never see people drop what they’re doing so fast, just to answer a simple question.  Those pharmacists, they love doling out advice.  It makes them feel valued, I think.

I feel sorry for pharmacists.  I mean, really?  You couldn’t hold out just a few more years in college to become a real physician? It’s like being a CIA agent, but with a cubicle.  And no gun.  And pharmacists, they know it; they know that they were just one step away from being the real deal, but for whatever reason—lack of funds, aversion to blood—they couldn’t quite make the cut to Doctor.

Well, I shouldn’t be snippy about it.  I like pharmacists.  Every pharmacist I’ve ever talked to has known—off the top of their heads, no less—exactly what aspects of which medicines will help combat various symptoms.  They’re brilliant people, and their career choices are none of my dadgummed business.

Brilliant, I say.  And I have an appointment with one first thing tomorrow morning.

About Camille

I'm Camille. I have a butt-chin. I live in Canada. I was born in Arizona. I like Diet Dr. Pepper. Hello. You can find me on Twitter @archiveslives, Facebook at facebook.com/archivesofourlives, instagram at ArchivesLives, and elsewhere.
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13 Responses to Pill Pushers: A Cut above the Rest

  1. Bert says:

    This is so true…..they basically are like doctors…only problem is that they dont have the degree to write out prescriptions…they tell you that it sounds like you have a sinus infection but you have to go to your doctor to get a prescription..if only they stayed in school longer….
    And as for this weather we are having…..WHAT THE HECK!! It cause of the mormon farmers praying and fasting for rain..i blame them….i wanted to go swimming…BAH!!!!!

  2. Molly says:

    hey, I think I know that guy posing as a Pharmacist! Gotta love a husband in the video industry! lol.

    but yeah, recently I made my blog private, so if you wanna keep reading, send me an email (or reply to this comment to my email address provided).

    I am too much of a pansy to deal with all the criticism. One day when you are a parent you will realize that the only form of Kryptonite to a womans soul is assaulting her parenting. So I am hiding w/my tail between my legs. :)

    xoxo.. hope your sniffles heal up quick.

  3. Geneva says:

    I agree that they are incredible! They actually go to four years of grad school just like doctors. The pay is good, but who would ever want to do it? Stuck in a box all day with grumpy old people demanding their drugs. Or annoying twenty somethings who are floored by the price of medications and decide they don’t want the carefully counted pills after all. Not that I’ve ever done that.

  4. A pharmacist once gave my mom Blood Pressure medicine instead of her prescription for a sinus infection.

    Good thing my mom caught it…or she could have kicked the bucket.

  5. DeAnna says:

    Some Pharmacist’s are awesome, especially small town ones. Unfortunately I have had a few that I just wanted to smack. The one was a Wal-mart pharmacist who thought that my bladder issues caused by child birth really weren’t that big a deal & could be solved by his advice. Silly man didn’t seem to care that I had seen a specialist who had determined I needed surgery and not an increase in my hygiene practices to solve the issue. Hopefully you feel better quick!

  6. Lindsey says:

    I never thought to ask a pharmacist’s opinion/recommendation on something. Next time I’m sick I WILL!!! This is good.

    And it’s funny, but earlier this week when i was at the pharmacy i was thinking that job could be interesting… Haha.

  7. Jeff says:

    Having personally worked for three years in a pharmacy, I have the utmost respect for them and what they do. I also have the same stance as Geneva…that’s why I discontinued my pursuit of a pharmacy career. I don’t think I have the patience for the patients. :)

    But I do have a beef with Camille’s statements in the paragraph with, “You couldn’t hold out just a few more years in college to become a real physician?” Pharmacists are in a completely different program than doctors. It’s not a matter of years…it’s that they choose to be pharmacists. If doctors are just pharmacists with more education…then why are you promoting pharmacists ABOVE doctors? :) The comparison to a CIA agent in a cubicle is also inaccurate. They’re doing exactly what their job is and what their career was always aiming at. And when it comes to drugs I was once told that doctors only take one pharmaceutical course during their schooling. I can’t cite a reference, and it sounds like a sketchy fact, so take it with a healthy sized grain of salt. But do remember that pharmacists deal with drugs all day everyday. They do continuing education studies. Drugs are their business. Naturally they are going to know more about the drugs than the doctors…and yes, I’m expecting flak for that comment.

    Now for the plug. I worked at the Costco pharmacy in Lethbridge. Highly recommend consulting with the pharmacists there. Ray, Mary, and Don are all very knowledgeable and I always consult with them before I’d consult with a doctor. If you’re there, tell them Jeff says Hi and that he put in a good word!

    P.S. Hope this didn’t come across as a comment against Camille, because it most definitely is not.

  8. niki says:

    Sorry about your colds, but hot cocoa and rain sounds truly delightful, especially in comparison to this scorching 115 degree weather!

    If I ever have any extra cash lying around, I shall use it to come visit you. Whadda ya say? I’ve always wanted to see Canada!

    Speaking of Canada, did you know Michael Buble'(whom I absolutely adore) is from there?

  9. jami says:

    I love pharmacists…you hit it right on the head. They will drop everything to help you find what you need.

  10. Pingback: Archives of Our Lives » Shattered Dreams of Corn-on-the-Cob

  11. Hannah says:

    Sorry your all sick! It rained the first night we were in Canada and I loved it! One thing I did notice about Canada and Utah is (because we went to one both places) is their Pharmacists are very nice and easy to talk to, none like here in Mesa. I also want to ask them questions but they make me feel dumb for not already knowing the answer so I just don’t ask! Another reason why I want to move to Canada. I almost had Billy talked into in while we were there.

  12. RatalieNose says:

    My sister is a pharmacy tech and the pharmacists she works with make bank.

  13. Mike says:

    Thank you. I’m a pharmacist from Arizona. This was a very interesting conversation. I like to hear what non-healthcare professionals think about us… even the bad. :-)

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