Identity Crisis, Tell me about yourself, Multiple choices

December 2, 2012

Live from New York, last Saturday Night, I lost my passport at a dance club. My only form of photo ID. My best souvenir of a year living and traveling in Asia. It vanished somewhere between the entrance and the women’s restroom. The music was decent, and the dancing was good. The security guards, bartenders, and coat check lady were all sympathetic, but no one had seen a US passport. I left the club with no proof of my name, age, or nationality.

Under normal circumstances, life without photo identification isn’t so hard. What’s in a name? Who cares about my nationality — I’m a citizen of the world, and aren’t we all? Plus, isn’t age nothing but a number? (Not when you’re buying wine at the store on Franklin. Oh well.) But, I have an exam this month. It requires proof that I am who I say I am. So. I panicked and went to the DMV armed with my birth certificate (which the doctor never signed), a utility bill, and a social security card. I didn’t need any of them. Just my signature. Who knew the DMV has digital records of my last drivers license. They even believed it was me with my new haircut. I left with a temporary license to drive, which I won’t use to drive, and then I headed to school. Student health flagged me for not having a tetanus booster, or for that matter a PPD… I guess, in theory, I could have picked up TB in Vietnam. But, let’s be honest, who doesn’t have TB nowadays. Am I right?

Two hours later I had a sore shoulder from a TDAP shot, and an email in my inbox. Someone found my passport! He googled me! He contacted the Luce Scholars program and asked them to give me his information! By the afternoon, I was in a gym in Manhattan with a bottle of champaign for the personal trainer who frequents the same dance clubs I do. A HUGE thank you to Anwar, both for giving me my passport, and restoring my faith in the kindness of strangers.

Monday continued on an upward trajectory — I met up with a friend from Vietnam for drinks and indian food. shoutout to Joanie! You are the bomb, and I am praying that you, Andy, and the girls find a way to teleport to New York.

The rest of the week was an interview marathon: 1) A hospital on the upper east side, full of celebrity sitings. Could this pop-culture-idiot end up doing pap smears for  rockstars? 2) A hospital on Long Island, full of surgical opportunities. Could  I be proficient on a surgical robot, and also a thick Long Island accent? 3) A hospital in North Philly. Could I go back to the motherland of brotherly love? Also, shout out to Morgan for housing me. Cher and Di live on! And, an additional shoutout to Angie for carpooling with me all over the east coast.

Now,it’s sunday again. I’m overdue in writing thank you cards. And, now that my photo ID is safe and sound, I have to keep studying my multiple choice patients.

Oh, it’s December, by the way. A Christmas tree has been erected in the apartment lobby. I bought a Menorah. It’s cold. Here’s a song, lovely reader, to celebrate:

 

 

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