Pectoriloquy |

Workplace Wellness FREE TO VIEW

Maureen Jane Miller, MD, MPH
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Editor’s Note:The author writes, “‘Workplace Wellness,’ or personal competition as market competition, was inspired by my year as a master’s student in occupational and environmental health.” Maureen Miller, MD, MPH, is a resident in anatomic and clinical pathology at NYU Langone Medical Center. Her public health research has focused on environmental origins of chronic disease in low-income urban populations. She is the founding editor of Rap Genius, a popular website specializing in the annotation of literary texts and song lyrics.

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians. See online for more details.

Chest. 2015;147(1):276-277. doi:10.1378/chest.14-1669
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  In the days after white earbuds left
  fashion I was put in a bit of a bind:
  How best to communicate to the public that I do not
  want to talk when I am on the elevator?
  With the largesse of the new noisecancelers
  I can keep the switch lit while the battery on my phone dies
  and in this position you mock-harrumph while I hiss-air-boom.
  Kidding: you are not paying attention at all.
  Except when we’re running.
  When are we not, after all?
  After work, you ask after my Bose, how they are canceling.
  We are on a run, and it has been weeks,
  in that it has been, like, three and a half weeks,
  since I last ran into you.
  You were, you texted through my phone,
  just so busy reading about how busy you are all the time.
And this run we go on
to have the luxury to have the sincere pleasure
to warm again to one another
via a stadium go-around)
is a curt jog cum sprint along the I don’t know.
I forget what that body of water is called.
  The first ten would be warm were it
  not for my exercise-induced asthma
  so I claim, for time, a snort through my lying turbinates
  knock-knock albuterol and samidzat pseudoephedrine
  coughing up guaifenesin with whatever scrape-able noxious something
  clear as tin (allergies!) and voice plaqued
  I am unable to contain my contempt without the use of a spacer.
  Slight little thing!
  You, who call yourself chub,
  I can’t believe you can even talk while you’re working out.
  At times it seems you live to offend,
  dicking around with your metrics.
  To stick a Bovie on me
  is to do your 20 curls, 10 mountain-climbers, 800-meter run
  except that times we can scale.
  And I know our friend on our same app
  she is keeping a running feed.
  And patch or no patch
  it takes a thrum in the blood to remain at 115.
  Who can replace my bronchioles’ cytokine grab-ass?
  It is just me joining the half-an-hour earlier group.




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