Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Pardon Me If I Do Not Live Up To My Usual Low Standards of Incoherence


wooozle wuuuzle



Charles Murton said...

What airline did you travel, and what was the hostie rating? Hosties are rated on a scale from 0 (National Bulgarian Airlines) to 10 (Singapore Air).

Some of the old boilers you see on Qantas these days would crack a mirror.

alexis said...

I bought a ticket with Singapore shortly after the conferral of my PhD, and in a moment of moral weakness (inspired by tales of seat upgrades) decided to list my title as "Dr". Half way across Asia, a flight attendant leaned towards me, with the dreaded words, "Dr Harlot?" Certain that the next sentence would be "There's a small child at the front of the plane choking on a pencil and we need you to help", I proceeded to explain, loudly, that yes, I was Dr Harlot, only my degree was in literature, not medicine. "But", returned the flight attendant, "are you a vegetarian?"

Charles Murton said...

Practising physicians don't require a doctorate degree-wise. 'Doctor' is a title, not a degree, and was applied to physicians before the first university doctorates were formally awarded.

Most medical practioners in Australia have a M.B. B.S. but no university doctorate. The first doctors were the Roman Catholic church's 'doctors of the church'. Some of them were barely literate, but they earned the title by making some significant contribution to Christian doctrine ('doctrine' comes from the same Latin root of course).

The definitions here are not quite right. A surgeon is not a doctor - that's why they call themselves 'Mister', which has become a kind of inverted snobbery. You can't even get a doctorate in surgery - the degree doesn't exist; not in Australia anyway.

alexis said...

Indeed, and I was peeved to note that while in George Eliot's _Middlemarch_, the up-and-coming physician is a Mr Lydgate, in the otherwise excellent BBC adaptation, he's named Dr Lydgate. A deferral to the ignorance of modern audiences on just this point, I'll warrant.

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