SCENE 32

 

Scene 31 fades out to the sound of the street, hold black screen, slowly fade in sound of swimming pool water hitting the side of the pool as street sounds fade out. Slowly fade in to surface of swimming pool on a sunny Dallas day.  Pan to Richard and Taylor lying down in pool chairs, wearing only swim trunks and sunglasses. Without raising his head, Taylor picks up a beer, sips from it, and replaces it on the poolside cement. The two of them lie there, tanning in silence for a few more moments.

 

Taylor

I'm really getting into fourth year.

 

They lie there for a bit longer, then Richard rises, stretches, and takes off his sunglasses. He stands and dives into the pool. We follow Richard's dive until his feet are submerged, then start fourth year montage music.

 

Cut to Richard at his desk, filling out an application.

 

Cut to Taylor in a suit, getting a headshot picture taken.

 

Cut to Carolyn reading Iserson's book, "Getting Into a Residency: A Guide for Medical Students." [We have a copy]

 

Cut to Richard sitting in an attending's office.

 

Richard

uncomfortable

Dr. Black, I'm hoping you can, um, support my residency application with a favorable letter of reference.

 

Dr. Black stares at Richard for a few moments.

 

dr. black

Favorable letter of reference?

 

richard

Um...

 

dr. black

How about just a letter of reference.

 

Richard jumps on it. He stands up, and shakes Dr. Black's hand.

 

Richard

Sounds good. Thank you Dr. Black.

 

 

Cut to Richard lifting weights with Taylor.

 

Cut to Richard filling out more applications.

 

Cut to Richard, Carolyn and Taylor in a bar.

 

Carolyn

to Richard

I've always thought of you as an internist.

 

Richard

dreading the thought of it

Uch, those patients...

 

Carolyn

How about anesthesia? They don't deal with patients.

 

Richard

You know it's not really the patients, it's the doctors I can't stand. Besides, I didn't come to medical school to learn how to put people to sleep.

 

Carolyn

frustrated, but not overdone

Okay Richard, then why did you come to medical school?

 

Richard contemplates this question for the first time in a few years.

 

Richard

I don't know. For the wrong reasons.

 

Taylor

Hey - the only people pathologists deal with are dead! How about pathology?

 

Richard doesn't even hear the question, he's still thinking about all the wrong reasons he came to med school. Hold Richard, pensive, for a few moments.

 

Cut to Becker interviewing. He's wearing a sharp suit and sitting with his legs crossed, obviously very comfortable in this environment.

 

interviewer 1

Well Becker, your academic record is impressive.

 

The interviewer reviews the papers on his desk, presumably Becker's application, visibly impressed.

 

Interviewer 1

Your board scores in particular set you apart from other applicants.

 

Becker

I agree. I suppose I did manage to squeeze in a few study sessions while I was doing the bench work for my research project on bedside troponin assays, which was published in last month's Journal of Cardiology.

 

Interviewer raises his eyebrows; Becker pulls out a paper from his inside coat pocket.

 

Becker

I know that you've been busy putting the finishing touches on your ARB dosing study protocol, so in case you let that issue slip past you I brought a reprint.

 

Interviewer, smiling, takes the paper.

 

Cut to Richard interviewing. His suit is more than a few sizes too small, and he leans up on his knees, fidgeting, looking down at the ground, visibly uncomfortable. Interviewer looks at Richard for a few moments, silently trying to figure out why he's being a weirdo. He writes on his pad.

 

interviewer 2

How are you today, Richard?

 

Richard does not look up from the ground. He is miserable, and unconsciously sabotaging the interview. He speaks as if he doesn't have complete command of the language.

 

Richard

Fine, thanks.

 

That's all we get. The interviewer looks at him with eyes of pity, and continues to write on his pad.

 

interviewer 2

I see you only applied to transitional programs. Have you not decided on a specialty?

 

Richard fidgets for a bit and finally looks up at the interviewer, who tries to hold Richard's gaze, but Richard looks down again.

 

Richard

Well you know how it goes. The baggage people lost my suit.

 

Pan to Interviewer 2's confused face.

 

Cut to match day celebration. Two exuberant female fourth-years, Josie and Elsie, holding both of the other's hands, trade match day info. Josie's eyes are wide with excitement.

 

josie

Well?

 

Elsie pauses for effect, looking like she's about to explode.

 

elsie

I'm going to Portland!!!!

 

Both girls shriek at the top of their lungs and jump up and down, not letting go of the other's hands. After a few moments of this, Elsie dutifully returns the favor.

 

elsie

What about you?

 

Another pause. Josie is panting with pent-up enthusiasm.

 

josie

Seattle!!!

 

They freak out, again, jumping up and down, exclaiming how they're going to be neighbors and how amazing that is. While this is happening, pan to Richard and Taylor. They're sitting down, talking calmly.

 

Taylor

So what are you going to do?

 

Richard

I don't know. For some reason I feel kinda relieved I didn't match. Maybe I'll take the year off.

 

Fourth year montage music stops, cut to swimming pool and Richard's head emerging from the water at the other end of the pool, as if he dove in and swam the length of the pool underwater. He slowly wades toward the edge of the pool, revealing Carolyn, who is standing in the pool, reading a magazine on the poolside. Richard wades up next to her, friendly-close but not romantic-close.  Carolyn keeps reading. Richard turns around so that he's facing the opposite direction as Carolyn (facing the length of the pool), puts his elbows up on the poolside, and arches his back so as to absorb as much sun as one can while standing in a pool. They both stand in silence, Carolyn reading, Richard sunning.

 

Fade in the sounds of graduation and leave the audience with these sounds and the image of Richard and Carolyn in the pool for a few seconds before cutting to scene 33. Cut to black.