Thursday, October 19th 2017
On my first full day of hospital clowning, I am still bandying about NAME possibilities, including; Dr. Lubbity Dub, Dr. Tinkle, Dr. Daisy and Dr. Deely Bopper. Either way I a safe because not only is there no pressure to pick a forever name, today I am paired to train with two extraordinary and experienced, naturally dignified professionals:
First up: BADGING!
After final clearance from Occ. Health, and and a visit to the Child Life Services HQ, we’re off to “Badging.” I am leaning towards “Dr. Deely Bopper,” which so far is well received, but turns out people don’t necessarily know what that IS.
deely boppers. /ˈdiːlɪˌbɒpəz/ plural noun. 1. a hairband with two balls on springs attached, resembling antennae.
So I’m floating Deely Bopper and BE Bopper. I ask my team mates and they each like one, so it’s a split vote. I ask the incredibly personable officer in the Badging office -a favorite employee of our team- which she likes better and she says, “Dr. Be Bopper,” which I was leaning towards anyways, for reasons including it is a nod in deference to the great “Nurse B.B.,” whose enormous proverbial clown shoes leave an indelible influence on the community, not to mention the opportunity for me to have this job!
Voila. Smile for the camera!
Wait! “Smile” for the camera? Or clown for the ca… **POOF!**
“OK how do you spell that,” asks the man from behind the desk, printing up my badge.
Dr. Bafu interjects, “Is it one word or two?”
Right! I nervously sputter out some letters, and then ask the Badge Man if he’s got it.
“It doesn’t seem that complicated,” he flatly replies.
So apparently my first act as Dr. Be Bopper is to get burned by the Badging Guy.
I may still have everything to learn about clowning for the camera -and everywhere else- but right now I’m. Just. Happy.
Outside Badging we step directly into a frenzy of patients and Papa Razzi parents, gasping with delight and cell phones at the unexpected arrival of clowns! Poor Doc Skeeter is trying to get us going to our packed schedule of rounds when I hear a parent’s voice say, “Are you Jenny?!?” And there it is, a mother with her little girl whose birthday party I performed not long ago. #Amazing.
Finally we’re off to rounds, wherein I can begin pinching myself that this is actually happening. Like a real job and everything. #WOW!
What a beginning!