You: "You from Cali?"
Me: "How'd you guess?"
You: "I hear it, baby."


Me: "I know where you're from."
You: "Yeah?"
Me: "Louisiana. 100%."

You smirked after I said that. Then came a slow wink and a nod.

You: "N'Orleans. All day and all night, baby!"

Me: "I knew for sure when you said 'baaaby.'”
You: "Yeeeeah, baby. It's hard to hide."


You: "But real talk? This funny accent saved my life, baby."

I raised my eyebrows and leaned forward.

Me: "Tell me more."
You: "I came here after Katrina. Ain't have a pot to piss in or a window to throw it out of! And I ain't exaggerating neither, baby. I'm talking the clothes on my back and nothing else."
Me: "Family? Did you have any in Atlanta?"
You: "Nope. None.”
Me: *shaking head* "Whoa."
You: “My family in the country so a lot of 'em didn't have nothing to help. Plus, I’m from the lower 9th, you know? I needed a city. One of them church groups had a bus coming to the ATL & I jumped on it. Ain't had plan the first of what I'd do once I got here."

You laughed.
Me: "Wow. So . . .how did the accent save you?"
You: "Oh. I was in a shelter, right? That first night here. It was so, so terrible. Bugs. Folk yelling and fighting. I had to get up out of there, baby.”

I wasn't offended by you saying “baby.” It wasn't fresh. It was you.
You: “I had about forty dollars and blew it all on a cheap motel room that night. Said I'd get me some rest and then go try to make something happen here in Atlanta. Didn't have one dime when I checked out of that room! Not even a bottle of water on me, baby!"
Me: *listening*
You: "Early that next morning, I saw this man with a delivery truck outside of McDonald's. Walked right up on him and said, 'Brother, I need some help. I need to work. Give me a chance and I'll load everything off this truck faster than you can say shrimp etouffé."
Okay. You didn't really say "shrimp etouffé" (but you have to admit it sounds better for the story.)


You went on to tell me about how the dude at the McDonald's truck said he wasn't the boss but, like me, heard that sing-song accent and asked where you were from.
And you told him "N'Orleans" and then shared your story. And that truck man then took out his cell phone and called up a friend.

"My man got this moving company. Said he could use some good folks to help him."

That's what you told me the guy at McDonald's said to you.

Me: "So the guy hired you?"
You: "He had me meet him a few blocks over and said, 'Look, bruh. I'm gon' have you work today and see how it go. If it go okay, we'll go with tomorrow.' And I shook his hand and said, 'Hell yeah, man.'
Me: *shaking my head* "Wow."
You: “I worked my ass off. Moved that shit off that truck in two seconds flat, baby!"
Me: *laughter*
You: "Been working with him ever since. Got me a house and a car now. And we even got a second truck. Business is good, too. Real, real good."

I wished I had a 'love' button.
Me: *sigh* "That's the best thing I've heard in a long time."
You: *nodding*
Me: "Did you ever see the guy from McDonald's again?"
You: "You know what? Like once or twice. And I told that man he saved my life. Just 'cause he was interested in the way I talked.”

You: “You know? It’s crazy because every time I left home, I used to wish I didn't talk so funny. But now I love my accent 'cause I know it start up conversations, you know? And conversations lead to relationships. And relationships can lead to chances. Feel me?"

Me: "I totally feel you."


You: *speaking softly* "Funny. Sometimes what make us feel like outsiders can be what open doors to us being insiders. Crazy how it all work, ain't it?"

So crazy. Yet so, so cool.

So very cool.
Lessons you taught me:

Take a chance.
Ask for help.
Be yourself.
Stay ready.
And hustle.


Study the books. Read the journals. But never, ever forget where the most meaningful wisdom is. It’s with the patient, man.

All day and all night, baby.



• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Kimberly D. Manning, MD

Kimberly D. Manning, MD Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @gradydoctor

3 Oct
You used to wear bow ties. That's what you told me. Elaborate and patterned--real ones, of course.

"None of that bullshit clip-on mess," you'd told me with a raspy laugh. I squinted one eye, twisted my mouth and did an inward chuckle.
Since you could see that I was amused, you egged me on by raising one eyebrow.

Me: "I'll never see clip on bow ties the same ever again."
You: "SO gonna be judging them from here forward, right?"
Me: "Totally."

We both giggled.
Even though you'd been dealing with a lot for the past few years, I could see beyond your cachectic frame & scary lab results. Your eyes never lost their boyish mischief.


Morning rounds were all business. But I always looped back to you later.

And I'm so glad I did.
Read 14 tweets
29 Sep
#HumanismAlways, Day 7 of 7

Have you ever written a 55 word story? Many of you have. But for those who haven't you should.

Here's how it works:

Think of the story.
Pare it down to 55 words.

Read it.
Read it again.

Then, get it down to 6 words.

This is mine.
55 words:

You used to dress in slim-fit seersucker suits
Elaborate paisley bow ties
and colorful socks

“The mall was my runway,” you said.
Back then, it was.

But not anymore.

I sat with you and held your hand
Until I could see beyond your illness

I envisioned Anna Wintour
The flashing cameras

And you

Being fierce
Read 4 tweets
29 Sep
Today’s #BSTMode inspired by @JHospMedicine #TWDFNR was 🔥!! Our first ever @EmoryDeptofMed + @MSMEDU hybrid version—woot!!

Today’s BSTs

Nour B., Emory PGY3
Krystal M., MSM PGY2
Joey S., Emory PGY2
Joi H., MSM PGY2

4 awesome talks + Q&A—all in under an hour! Let’s go! 👉🏽
Dr. Krystal Mills of @MSMEDU taught us about trending ammonia levels in hepatic encephalopathy—don’t do it. Shout out to her coach Dr. @TracyVettese of @EmoryDeptofMed. Read this article if you haven’t! 👉🏽
We learned from @dr_jsharp, Emory IM PGY2, that we need to pump the brakes on reflexive antipyretics in patients with a fever. His coach, Dr. Benjamin Renelus, @MSMEDU faculty supported in style! Want to know more? Read this paper. So good! 👉🏽
Read 8 tweets
28 Sep
#HumanismAlways, Day 6

Intern Year

Her: "You okay?"
Me: "Ma'am?"
Her: "Look like you was having a rough time when y'all were in here earlier."
Me: "Oh. That."

She was referring to post call rounds when I was presenting her case to my attending.

It had not gone well.
Her: "I thought you did just fine when you talked to me."
Me: *sagging shoulders*
Her: "But look like you started to come all unraveled when he started with all them questions."
Me: *sigh* "Yeah. It's a lot I don't know."
Her: *smiling* "It's a lot you do know, too."
Me: "I'm glad you think so."

She smiled at me, her wizened eyes twinkling.

Her: "You don't think so?"
Me: *shrug* "I don't know."

It had been a rough post call day. I hadn't gotten any sleep. But I was prepared. Or so I'd thought.

That is, until we started rounding.
Read 11 tweets
27 Sep
#HumanismAlways, Day 5

Him: "Them shoes you wearing. They some a your favorite shoes?"
Me: *looking down* "My shoes?"
Him: "Yeah. Your shoes. They your favorites?"
Me: *squinting eyes and thinking* "Ummm. . . I guess I like them. They're good work shoes for the most part."
Him: "You mean they're good work shoe for YOU."
Me: *puzzled* "Huh?"


Him: "Look here. If them ain't your favorite shoes--hell, your ONLY shoes, then you need to go on and retire 'em."
Me: *looking down at my shoes again* "Sir?"

His lip twitched with amusement.
Him: "Dr. Manning you woke me up 2 different times this week with that damn squeaky shoe! And today you got both of 'em squawking? Unh UH!!"


Him: *pointing* "Them shoes gots to GO. Or you gon' need to kick 'em off for you get on 10A so folk can get some rest."
Read 10 tweets
26 Sep
#HumanismAlways, Day 4


“Wait—let me take off my shoes and jacket before you weigh me.”

The nurse shrugged. But the thing is—I know my weight is up. And I don’t need nothing to make it worse. .

Me: “What is it? I can’t look.”
Her: “231.6 today.”


I’m exhausted. My inbox is exploding and I totally forgot curriculum night was last night.


I clicked through the flow sheet.

Nurse: “What you groaning about?”
Me: “Life. And my pt you just checked in gained 8 lbs in 3 months.”
Nurse: “Weight is complicated.”

If it wasn’t for me needing my medicines? I wouldn’t never come up here. Some doctors treat you like it ain’t in you to be ever healthy.

Especially if you heavy.

It’s like they give up. You can tell. I wish there was a way to just get my prescriptions and leave.
Read 19 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!