by | May 18, 1999 | Detroit Free Press | 0 comments

“Welcome back to the Dr. Laura program, the nation’s No. 1 advice show. I’m Dr. Laura and our next caller is Sergei.”

“Yes, Doctor. Thank you for taking call. I need advice.”

“What’s the problem?”

“My production.”

“Well, don’t be too hard on yourself, Sergei. Not every couple gets pregnant right away.”

“No, no. Not that production. Goals. I have trouble with goals.”

“Hmm. What goals are you seeking?”

“Any goals.”

“You’d take any goals?”

“At this point, yes. Even cheap ones.”

“Listen, Sergei. If you look for cheap, you’ll get cheap. Perhaps you should aim a bit higher.”

“Higher. Yes. You are right. Everyone says to beat Patty, you must go high.”

“Patty is your partner?”

“No. Patty is my tormentor.”

“Well, I’m sure it feels that way at times.”

“It will not feel that way if I score.”

“Sergei, these are the 90s. We don’t say ‘score’ anymore.”

“Ugh. English. Such a difficult language.”

“Anyhow, just remember that Patty is on your side.”

“No. Patty is on other side.”

“Hmm. Here’s an idea. Try and bring Patty onto your side by making Patty part of your goals.”

“Oh, yes, Doctor. If I have my way, Patty will be big part of my goals. In fact, I want Patty to relax and watch all my goals.”

“You’re on the right track now, Sergei.”

“Also, I have other question. Is it OK for American man to date teenager?”

“I’m sorry, only one issue per caller. . .”

No denying the pain

“Our next caller is Ozzie. Welcome to the program, Ozzie.”

“Thanks, Doc.”

“What’s on your mind?”

“Well, I have a really big showdown tonight, and I’m feeling some pain. But I don’t want anyone to know.”

“We all hide our pain in different ways, Ozzie. Some hide it with shyness. Others hide it with false confidence. How are you hiding your pain?”

“With my knee pad.”

“You mean your emotional knee pad.”

“No, I mean my knee pad. It covers the area where I feel my pain.”

“By that you mean your heart.”

“No, my knee.”

“I think you’re in denial.”

“Doc, I know my heart from my knee.”

“All right. What can I do for you?”

“Could you write me a prescription?”

“There are no prescriptions for a broken heart, Ozzie.”


“Knee. Heart. Whatever you want to call your hang-up. The fact is, pain is a part of life. The quicker we accept that, the easier it is to rise again.”

“Hmm. Now that you mention it, rising has been my problem. I go down easy, but I have trouble getting up.”

“Take my advice. Ignore the pain. Rise. Rise!”

“I get you. Be a man….YEAH. Thanks, Doc.”

“You’re welcome. Remember, time heals a broken heart.”


“Whatever…. “

Action plan needed

“Let’s take our last caller. Hello, Scotty, I’m Dr. Laura, and I am my kid’s mom.”

“I’m Scotty. And I am my players’ coach.”

“Good metaphor! What seems to be the trouble, Scotty?”

“It’s the Avalanche.”

“Ah. The emotional avalanche.”

“Well, they are a little feisty-“

“Things are tumbling down on top of you.”

“They’re on top of us, all right. They’re smothering us. I’ve tried every line I can think of.”

“What kind of lines?”

“You name it. My first line. My second line. None of my lines are working.”

“Well, Scotty. Sometimes words are not enough.”

“That’s what I’ve been telling them.”

“You must take action.”


“Face your fears.”


“Work without a net!”

“Well …we need a net. Otherwise we couldn’t score.”

“Scotty, this is 1999. We don’t ‘score’ anymore.”

“Tell me about it. We didn’t score once on Sunday.”


“So we better score tonight. And we better hit somebody.”

“Hit somebody? Real men don’t hit–“

“In front of the referees. You’re right. No dumb penalties. All we have to do is be smart, do what we do best, and things will work out OK, right?”

“Uh …right.”

“We’re the champions. We can do this!”

“Sounds like a plan.”

“Thanks for your help, Doc.”

“You’re welcome, Scotty. I’m Dr. Laura. Now go take on the day.”

“Right after we knock out Forsberg. . .”

MITCH ALBOM can be reached at 1-313-223-4581 or Listen to Mitch’s radio show, “Albom in the Afternoon,” 3-6 p.m. weekdays on WJR-AM


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Mitch Albom writes about running an orphanage in impoverished Port-au-Prince, Haiti, his kids, their hardships, laughs and challenges, and the life lessons he’s learned there every day.

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