Monday, November 15, 2010

Doctor Theatre

There's a phrase amongst actors: Doctor Theatre.

What it means is that if you're feeling really ill, and you have to be on stage that night, you will make a miraculous recovery just in time for the play, will play the role fine - - and then feel really ill again afterwards.

I have this with teaching. It's a strange phenomenon.

At the moment I have a cold. Hardly surprising as I have been associating with lots and lots of student doctors and colds whizz round student communities like a National Germ-Sharing Scheme.

I tend to get colds in two types: the Feeling-Ill type and the Sneezing-and-Runny-Nose type.

This is the Feeling-Ill type and I'm really not enjoying it. But I can override it where necessary. I just carried on working in our office this morning - - but was still aware of the cold, and generally sniffed pathetically from time to time and felt sorry for myself.

This afternoon, as I approached my group of student doctors, I felt terrible. Oh, woe is me, I thought, I am ILL in BLOCK CAPITALS.

Then the session started and every single symptom disappeared for the whole afternoon. The session went well, the students were great, I loved it all.

At the end all the students left the room and suddenly - - - the block capitals were back! OH I FEEL ILL! How can I drag myself back to the dreary multi-storey car park, in the dark and the cold, to my car? Sighhhhhh. O Cruel World (etc).

I'm feeling pretty ill this evening too. I'll work in our office again tomorrow morning, and I bet I'll feel ill during it - but I bet I'll be fine for my teaching group tomorrow afternoon.

It's a weird thing. It's something to do with "performance" in front of other people, I think, that concentrates the mind wonderfully and causes it to ignore the body's grumbles. Doctor Theatre and Doctor Teaching are forces to be reckoned with.


Blogger Silverback said...

Sorry you're not FEELING WELL. Oh my, I've come down with capitalisation now too ;-)

Damn you, TYPHOID Daphne !

11:15 pm  
Blogger rhymeswithplague said...

"act as if" is a good prescription in every situation...

1:29 pm  
Blogger Ailbhe said...

I've had it in almost every job. It was bad for my long-term health.

12:29 pm  

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