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Chapter 26
We took the subway to Columbia. David Borenstein had notreplied to my email. I did not mention this to Rosie whoinvited me to her meeting, if it did not clash with mine.
‘I’ll say you’re a fellow researcher,’ she said. ‘I’d like you to seewhat I do when I’m not mixing drinks.’
Mary Keneally was an associate professor of psychiatry in theMedical Faculty. I had never asked Rosie the topic of her PhD.
It turned out to be Environmental Risks for Early OnsetBipolar Disorder, a serious scientific topic. Rosie’s approachappeared sound and well considered. She and Mary talked forfifty-three minutes, and then we all went for coffee.
‘At heart,’ Mary said to Rosie, ‘you’re a psychiatrist rather thana psychologist. You’ve never thought of transferring toMedicine?’
‘I came from a medical family,’ said Rosie. ‘I sort of rebelled.’
‘Well, when you’ve finished rebelling, we’ve got a great MDprogramme here.’
‘Right,’ said Rosie. ‘Me at Columbia.’
210/290‘Why not? In fact, since you’ve come all this way …’ She madea quick phone call, then smiled. ‘Come and meet the Dean.’
As we walked back to the Medical building, Rosie said to me,‘I hope you’re suitably impressed.’ We arrived at the Dean’soffice and he stepped out to meet us.
‘Don,’ he said. ‘I just got your email. I haven’t had a chanceto reply.’
He turned to Rosie. ‘I’m David Borenstein. And you’re withDon?’
We all had lunch at the faculty club. David told Rosie that hehad supported my O-1 visa application. ‘I didn’t lie,’ he said.
‘Any time Don feels like joining the main game, there’s a jobfor him here.’
Coal-oven pizza is supposedly environmentally unsound, but Itreat statements of this kind with great suspicion. They arefrequently emotionally based rather than scientific and ignore fulllife-cycle costs.
Electricity good, coal bad. But where does the electricity comefrom?
Our pizza at Arturo’s was excellent. World’s Best Pizza.
I was interested in one of the statements Rosie had made atColumbia.
‘I thought you admired your mother. Why wouldn’t you wantto be a doctor?’
‘It wasn’t my mother. My father’s a doctor too. Remember?
That’s what we’re here for.’ She poured the rest of the redwine into her glass.
‘I thought about it. I did the GAMSAT, like I told PeterEnticott. And I did get seventy-four. Suck on that.’ Despite theaggressive words, her expression remained friendly. ‘I thoughtthat doing Medicine would be a sign of some sort of obsessionwith my real father. Like I was following him rather than Phil.
Even I could see that was a bit fucked-up.’
Gene frequently states that psychologists are incompetent atunderstanding themselves. Rosie seemed to have provided goodevidence for that proposition. Why avoid something that shewould enjoy and be good at? And surely three years ofundergraduate education in211/290psychology plus several years of postgrad............
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