Wednesday, September 30, 2009


A little piece of my latest excel data entry session.

The annual meeting for the American Academy of Ophthalmology is coming up in a month. Every year, around 15,000 ophthalmologist from all over the world descend on a city to learn from the luminaries in the field and to show that same city how to really party. You can't swing a stick without hitting a man in a tweed coat telling a hilarious story about his latest antics involving ocular coherence tomography interpretation. "So I said...what of it? Why don't we just reverse the polarity if she can't keep her forehead against the headrest!!!" (huge guffaws from all around)

The AAO meeting has different meaning for me this year. Dr. Durrie (the man I moved here to work with) is one of those luminaries that people are coming to hear. It means that for six days, he will not stop giving presentations, holding meetings, or presiding over board meetings. It also means that for the last few weeks, I have been filling in excel spreadsheets, creating power point presentations, and coordinating with meeting, well, coordinators. It is hundreds of hours of work. It is tedious to the extreme. But it is part of the process.

I've got to take a moment to sit back and enjoy the fact that I get the privilege of creating power points and compiling analyses that people are flying half way around the world to see. I was one of those people two years ago. It is really easy for me to get downcast when I'm not actively in surgery or with patients in clinic, but this is all part of the process. There is a lot of tedium on the way to doing great things. Everyone I've ever talked to that did anything worthwhile says the same thing. And I bet they all thought their work was pretty uninspiring at the time, too.

1 comment:

  1. Well said Joel! I'm going to help Ryan remember this when he is Chief next year.