This is the last blog
of 2013.  See you on the other side of

Happy New Year 2015


Leonard Zwelling

         It’s the time for wrapping up 2013 and making resolutions
for 2014. Not for me.

         I am past that.

         Here’s what I would like to say this time next year in
December of 2014 in the usual Letterman Top Ten format:

10. Oprah Winfrey beat out
Barbara Walters in a competition voted on by the people using cell phones (normal charges may apply) to interview the now
deceased Nelson Mandela, Ronald Reagan and Francisco Franco using the skills of
a modern medium Oprah met on the set of her latest film project. None of them
had anything new to say. Including Barbara Walters.

9. John Boehner had a special
“de-tanning” skin treatment to bleach his way to a normal complexion as part of
the GOP’s latest strategy to make tanning salon bans the cornerstone of its
cancer prevention strategy aimed at attracting liberals to their side of the
ballot. In response the Tea Party chartered a Gulfstream and  took Christmas Break 2014 basking in the sun on
a topless beach in the south of France.

8. Healthcare,gov still does
not work properly but  hackers in Finland
have been able to link the HHS site to any ATM so that Americans can pay the
penalty with a debit card. Or is it a tax? This is for those who don’t have
health insurance despite trying to buy it on healthcare.gov and who were either
locked out of the site or the site could not identify them despite linking their
entered data with the NSA cell phone data base that supposedly wasn’t spying on

7. The GOP captures the
Senate and holds the House thereby guaranteeing a completely inanimate DC for
another two years. No one notices. Fewer care.

6. Hillary Clinton still has
not decided whether or not she will run for President in 2016 for fear that
appearing on a debate podium with Chris Christie may make the two of them look
like a zero next to a decimal point. You decide which is which.

5. A new movement among
practicing physicians has grown quickly. Rather than having patients go abroad
for medical tourism to save money, the doctors are running foreign tours (“Have
insurance, will travel”) with groups of their current patients. The docs and
patients are using the more modern medical facilities and hospitals in Thailand
and Korea to do surgery, including plastic surgery. Everyone gets a vacation break
and at least the docs get their tickets paid for which is worth more than they
would make seeing Medicaid patients here at home. The only hitch is the plastic
surgery is so good the Americans no longer resemble their passport photos and
have had to run the gauntlet of the Customs Service when returning.

4. MD Anderson has joined
Sloan-Kettering and other major cancer centers in sharing genomic data and
patient information in defiance of HIPAA. This is the academic medicine
equivalent of civil disobedience. This is an effort to characterize and
categorize all human malignancies at the genetic level. They have hired Edward
Snowden to handle the data crunching and Bernie Madoff to interpret the data
for each patient. By giving the FDA a cut of the proceeds from the anticipated
intellectual property, the academic centers got the agency to agree that
genetic testing is no longer a medical device but a tool of espionage. Homeland
Security is not amused.

3. The Board of Ob-Gyn has
now approved of their members caring for male patients as long as these men
learn to say “I’m lost, I’m wrong and I’m sorry” and pledge to watch at least
one hour of daytime TV for six weeks after any surgery. Those men with low T go
to the head of the line.

2. Michelle Obama has
declared her intention to contest Condoleeza Rice to be the next Commissioner
of the NFL. The First Lady’s platform is based on the banning of all tackling,
body contact and all helmets in professional football and resorting to snatching
carrots and cucumbers from the belts of opposing runners as the means to stop
an offensive play. In lieu of helmets, Ms. Obama is commissioning the design of
a new Green Beret with a cauliflower cluster signifying vegetables rather than
valor. The Super Bowl will be renamed the Salad Bowl and an all vegan version
of the NFL Cookbook will be published the week of the 2015 Salad Bowl as a
means to raise funds for the greening of the Kalahari Desert. The game will be
won by the newly renamed Chicago Polar Bears. No French fries are sold at the
game. Only brown rice.

And 1. Ron DePinho and Dan
Fontaine are the only two occupants of the Executive Suite of the Pickens
Building. Entrance to the floor is only via a special clearance process with
security manned by former TSA agents who have Uzis at their sides. Small robotic
versions of DePinho and Fontaine have been seen doing walkabouts in the clinics
and the faculty members have renamed them Mini-Mean 1 and 2.

         Don’t you wish this would happen? Don’t you know that what
will happen will be even weirder?

         Happy New Year, y’all!

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