* * Anonymous Doc

Thursday, October 15, 2009

I passed a homeless man on the street yesterday. He said he was hungry, asked for money. I happened to have a granola bar in my pocket. I offered it to him.

"No thanks, I'm diabetic," he said.

If I'd wanted to engage, which I didn't, I would have told him I'm a doctor, and starving to death on the street is going to kill him a lot faster than diabetes. More realistically, I expect he wasn't hungry at all, but just wanted the money for alcohol or drugs. Maybe wasn't even homeless.

Not that I was giving panhandlers money before, but my month of ICU rotation made me even more reluctant. Seemed like half the people we saw were homeless folks going through alcohol withdrawal.

"No thanks, I'm diabetic" ? Is he even checking his sugar? Is he seeing a doctor? Is he on medication? I'm skeptical of all of it, unfortunately.


  1. Offered an apple to a local homeless man, poor guy couldn't eat it...had no teeth. Maybe this guy had more issues then alchoholism and diabeates. You need teeth to eat a granola bar!

  2. I just discovered your blog the other day and have been reading your posts consecutively. Love it.

    My 92-year-old, 88 lb. grandmother compulsively watches her sugar intake because she's worried about getting diabetes.