Emily Yoffe on being a Human Guinea Pig.

Real-time discussions with Slate writers.
July 5 2007 5:19 PM

Oh, No She Didn't!

Emily Yoffe talks with readers about being a Human Guinea Pig.

Emily Yoffe was online at Washingtonpost.com on Thursday, July 5, to discuss her adventures as Slate's Human Guinea Pig, the latest of which involved being examined by medical students. An unedited transcript of the chat follows.

(Continued from Page 4)

The people who are trained to be genital/urinary standardized patients really do instruct the young doctors in how to perform the exam, what hurts, when to press harder etc. What an amazing job!

_______________________

Kingstowne, Va.: Can I receive free treatment by volunteering to be a patient?

Hmmm... on second thought....

Advertisement

Emily Yoffe: Go with that "second thought"

_______________________

Clinton, N.Y.: I love you, Emily Yoffe! You always bring to light the funny, telling detail and your Dear Prudence advice is fab.

Suggestion for a Human Guinea Pig gig: Do a cooking class, not at CIA or the like, but at a Y, or some such more modest operation. I am a nervous wreck in the kitchen, and have always wondered whether a course would make me any more competent or confident.

Emily Yoffe: Thank you so much. I'm also one of those freaked out cooks. I'm so glad I don't have an open kitchen, that way my guests don't see me bleeding and crying on their food.

I think going to a really serious cooking school would be a fun Guinea Pig.

_______________________

New York, N.Y.: Have you ever considered backup singer for jingles? Every time I hear an add with a jingle that involves multiple singers I can't help but to imagine them in the recording studio singing these cheesy/odd lines.

For example the loan ad for 8-6-6-66-Faster, "You've got the Green Light." And these are good singers. Are they professional backups, karaoke flies, American Idol rejects? I'd like you to find out. Thanks.

Emily Yoffe: I did make my singing debut at Strathmore Hall for Human Guinea Pig. My editor said listening to it was the aural equivalent of watching the Hindenberg explode.

_______________________

Gaithersburg, Md.: I really enjoy the "Human Guinea Pig" series. I was wondering how the "Dear Prudence" experience is different for you. Certainly the readers seem more ... um ... pointed ... in their opinions.

Emily Yoffe: They are different, but I love the reader feedback from Prudence because people will immediately tell me if they disagree (strenuously) with my advice. I learn a lot from them.

_______________________

A good bedside manner is nice: But I'm much more interested in a knowledgable doctor; I'd gladly sacrafice some social skills for a top notch surgeon. In fact, I don't think one person can be all, so I'd rather have the doctoring skills. I have my own friends on the outside, thanks. What I need is an orthopaedic surgeon, and if he's a little low on the social skills, that's okay, you'd have to have a bit of an ego to be able to cut into people and save lives.

Emily Yoffe: Good point. But I know from (too many) friends who have cancer that it's very disturbing if your oncologist does not make a human connection with you. With your surgeon, during most of your relationship you're unconscious. With other doctors, you want good medicine, absolutely, but feeling your are a real person to your doctor is also important.

_______________________

Emily Yoffe: Thanks everyone for your fascinating questions and good Human Guinea Pig suggestions!

TODAY IN SLATE

Frame Game

Hard Knocks

I was hit by a teacher in an East Texas public school. It taught me nothing.

There Are New Abuse Allegations Against Adrian Peterson

After This Merger, One Company Could Control One-Third of the Planet's Beer Sales

John Oliver Pleads for Scotland to Stay With the U.K.

If You’re Outraged by the NFL, Follow This Satirical Blowhard on Twitter

Jurisprudence

Don’t Expect Adrian Peterson to Go to Prison

In much of America, beating your kids is perfectly legal. 

The Juice

Ford’s Big Gamble

It’s completely transforming America’s best-selling vehicle.

I Tried to Write an Honest Profile of One of Bollywood’s Biggest Stars. It Didn’t Go Well.

Here’s Why College Women Don’t Take Rape Allegations to the Police

The XX Factor
Sept. 15 2014 1:51 PM Here’s Why College Women Don’t Take Rape Allegations to the Police
  News & Politics
Weigel
Sept. 15 2014 8:56 PM The Benghazi Whistleblower Who Might Have Revealed a Massive Scandal on his Poetry Blog
  Business
Moneybox
Sept. 15 2014 7:27 PM Could IUDs Be the Next Great Weapon in the Battle Against Poverty?
  Life
Outward
Sept. 15 2014 4:38 PM What Is Straight Ice Cream?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 15 2014 3:31 PM My Year As an Abortion Doula
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Sept. 15 2014 11:38 AM The Slate Doctor Who Podcast: Episode 4  A spoiler-filled discussion of "Listen."
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 15 2014 8:58 PM Lorde Does an Excellent Cover of Kanye West’s “Flashing Lights”
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 15 2014 4:49 PM Cheetah Robot Is Now Wireless and Gallivanting on MIT’s Campus
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 15 2014 11:00 AM The Comet and the Cosmic Beehive
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 15 2014 9:05 PM Giving Up on Goodell How the NFL lost the trust of its most loyal reporters.