Tag Archives: wisdom

M & M

A little background: Many years ago (1980) I worked in Manhattan at Blue Cross Blue Shield. At that time, I was a medical claims examiner/correspondent. I was crazy about this gorgeous young man who sat diagonally across from me on the other side of the floor. I had the feeling he was attracted to me too, but he was too shy to do anything about it. My friend I worked with used to say, “He’s just slow on the uptake.” I realized I had to take matters into my own hands. So, one day while at work, I wrote this little fantasy story about the 19th floor and our boss, Barbara. I left this hand-written story on his desk and waited until he returned. I could see his desk from mine and was gratified that he was laughing. The story is a bit dated (CRT – This was the computer that we all used in the middle of the floor), but I think it still holds up. We ended up getting married eventually. Although we are no longer together, we are still friendly.

BCBS Story – 1980

Once upon a time, in the far reaches of the universe, there existed a large corporation named Blue Cross Blue Shield.
In the vast expanse of the 19th floor, a queen emerged named Barbara. Queen Barbara would sit on her throne for hours at a time issuing her imperial orders to her royal court.
In a small section of the floor, there resided a conscientious young man named Mark, better known as M. Now M was a very hard worker who carried out the Queen’s orders to a tee. Whenever she needed something done, she knew she could count on M to follow through.
On the other side of the floor, sat a not-so-conscientious worker named Marilyn, also known as M. Because of the similarities in their names, people often confused the two. The only difference was that one M had a mustache and the other one didn’t.
But, lo and behold, one day M shaved off his mustache and the office was in turmoil. No one could tell them apart.
Queen Barbara was beside herself. She would call for her bowl, call for her pipe, call for her fiddlers three, and call for M. But being unable to distinguish between the two Ms, she became totally confused, often to the point of disorientation.
One day she bellowed from her office, “M, please come here; I need your assistance!” Well, as usual, both Ms came into the office, causing a total look of confusion to come over the Queen’s face. With this, she ran screaming from her office, never to be heard from again.
Now the diligent workers of this vast organization were without guidance. They desperately needed someone they could look up to and trust; someone with the wisdom of a King, yet the understanding of the commoners—someone with a vast knowledge of Special Service and surgical-medical contracts—someone who could be hard yet soft at the same time and could mingle with the lower echelon of the Corporation. Who better than M? But which M was it? Was it M or M?
Since it was totally impossible to tell them apart, the loyal subjects voted to make both Ms King and Queen of the 19th floor, and to have them share the throne.
As the years passed, and people came and went, the two Ms continued to rule wisely but firmly. Their popularity never dwindled. So, if you ever find yourself trapped in a maze of uncertainty about surgical-medical contracts, the CRT, or life in general, visit the humble office on the 19th floor where the sign reads: M & M

Letting Go

Letting go of old letters or in my case, old journals is not always easy. I’ve been trying to decide what direction I want to take with my Blog. I met with someone from my writer’s group last week and I mentioned that I make no money on my Blog, probably because it is about what I WANT to write and not what everyone wants to read. He said (and I’m sure he didn’t mean to upset me) that if I were going to just write for myself, I might as well just write in a diary (or journal). While I was out running/walking the other day a light bulb went off in my head—write what you know. OK, I know a lot, and I DO write about it, but I’m not “successful” in the way I want to be. Then I thought, “OK, why not take those gut-wrenching, insane, journals you used to keep (just to keep me sane) when I was out there”. That sounded like the answer—yes, people could relate to that and this will keep their interest. All my recent writing and journaling is done on my computer, but years ago, everything was hand-written in notebooks. So, I pulled them out from the top of my closet and started reading. Wow, what a revelation—some of it is so crazy and ridiculous that I literally want to just chuck it. I found myself saying, “Oh, pleeeeeese!” There is something to be said for looking back fondly at old times, but my old times were horrible and I do not even recognize the person I was then. They say “youth is wasted on the young” and I believe it. What a waste my life was and thank God I matured. It is almost as if these heart-felt words penned by me (when I was 18 through about 30) were from a different person, and they were in a way. There is no resemblance from that pathetic, lost soul that I was then to the woman that I have become. Yes, lots of those feelings are still the same, but the way I handle life has changed. It is called maturity and wisdom; and I’d like to believe that I have acquired some amount of both throughout the years. In some ways it is helpful to re-read these journals because it shows the transformation that has taken place, and it keeps my “memory green” as they say. I had to ask myself if I really wanted to revisit those years and the answer is a resounding NO. The question is if I want to throw the books away or keep them for my grandchildren to discover. I’m leaning toward the former. I could not have even considered that a few years ago and that is evidence of personal growth. I have had lots of hard times in recent years from extreme physical debilitation to unbelievable heartache with my child, but I could never imagine myself using the same coping mechanisms that I employed back then. Life is life and I still “journal” for my own sanity, but I have changed and I now know I am ready to let the past go.