Cards not just for Christmastime

By Kevin Wilson: CNJ columnist

If you’re good at waiting, the doctor’s office is your heaven.

First off, there’s a room just for waiting. Then you go to the patient room, where you wait some more (you’re called the patient because that’s exactly what you have to be).

And you take your pants off, then wait some more (by the way, I’m not allowed to go into that dentist’s office again). Then you wait for your insurance adjustments to go through. By the time it’s all over, I just want to sit back down in the waiting room, because I feel like I need to wait a while to drive home. I won’t even get into waiting to eat, waiting for prescriptions or waiting for reimbursement.

At the very least, the doctors offices I go to have methods to make the waiting easier. From the motivational poster of the kitten hanging on to the various desktop toys to the brochures on dealing with diseases, it’s all there.

My favorite are the brochures, because of the contrived effort to get stock photos of every race, creed and color on a bookmark-sized brochure about a disease that none of those models could possibly have. I think we should just settle it once and for all and make Wayne Brady, William Shatner, Lucy Liu and Shakira our go-to stock photo group — now that’s a group I’d like to see on my brochure or in a Waffle House sometime.

But visiting during Christmastime is the most special, because I get to see the Christmas cards sent to the office, whether it’s to the office or one of the employees.

There’s always the one that will be posted on awkwardfamilyphotos.com within the week. Or the one where everybody’s wearing the same shirt. Or the one where each child is pictured separately because the family couldn’t get the entire group to behave at once. Or, naturally the one where the kid never behaves.

(When I have kids, I will remember two things about holiday cards. First, I’ll tell the kids in my stern parent voice that this will be a permanent photographic record and they don’t want to make a face that I can bring up as a weapon to embarrass them with in their teenage years. Second, I’ll remember they will completely ignore this advice.)

The problem is, I have no Christmas cards of my own to send. I have no wife, no kids, no pets and no girlfriend (though asking a girl to pose with me for a Christmas card is far from the worst idea I’ve ever had). What would I take a picture of, me on the couch watching Maury Povich? And while I’ve traveled to some cities that offer much more than Maury Povich could, they’re still not exotic hot spots for my photo background.

By this point, you’re probably thinking I’d like Christmas cards gone. In the words of Lee Corso … not so fast, my friend. I’d like to see the process expanded. Send Valentine’s Day cards to show how in love you are (or that you’re available). Send a July 4 card to show people how much you ate to celebrate our country’s history. Send a Labor Day card, showing you doing nothing. Send a Halloween card to show off your costume. And, of course, send a Thanksgiving card to show people how much you ate to celebrate our country’s history.

So get your digital cameras out, and choose some photo borders. Because there’s always a holiday coming up. No reason to keep everybody waiting until December.