Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!

Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!
Frazzled Marc, half way through my 40s!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Great Mechanic or Doctor? Keep 'Em for Life!

There is the old adage that if you find a great mechanic, keep 'em for life. I think that can apply for doctors as well. After all, each one provides a specific important service, necessary for work and life. Why not frequent the best that there is!  You wouldn't go to a crappy with cold hands and attitude? You also wouldn't go to a bad or untrustworthy mechanic, would you?

There once was a time when I thought changing your oil was just pullin' up the dipstick and then toppin' it off with any old oil:  5W-30, 10W-30, olive oil, vegetable, etc.  Luckily, I started getting schooled by horrified friends and family members about properly taking care of my car. 

One of the best pieces of advice I learned was to shop around for a good mechanic. Rely on the recommendation of friends on who is trustworthy, friendly, and helpful. Ask them questions and if they take the time to go over everything with you (a couple times because you have no clue initially what they are talking about), then keep going back. It may take a couple of mechanics to find that one, but when you do, keep 'em!

When I lived in Berks County, I went to the Pleasantville Garage in Oley, PA.  The owner, Adam Hiller, was the ultimate trustworthy and honest mechanic. I was bummed when I moved realizing that the Pleasantville Garage wasn't a short drive away. You want a mechanic who treats your car like it's their car. You also don't want to get taken 'to the cleaners' with the final bill. Adam was always upfront about the prices and was always more than willing to work with me with the larger bills. Skills, trustworthiness, and customer service. Pleasantville Garage has it all.

Here are a couple links where you can find info on Pleasanteville Garage:
http://www.autorepairmenow.com/pleasantville_garage_oley_PA_S700072820.php
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Pleasantville-Garage/149353165083645

When I moved up to Schuylkill County, I realized I had to change doctors as well. I was going to a family medical office in Douglassville, PA. They were, ahem, OK. I just always sort of felt like a number going in and out of their office. I was never treated badly but sometimes it was as cold as that stethoscope against your back. I think it comes down to good customer service and showing a genuine concern for your patients. No one wants to go back to the doctor who does not put you at ease for your anxiety-ridden concerns.

I was very hesitant in picking out a new doctor. I had a major health concern and needed someone that I would instantly feel comfortable with. You want a doctor that you can open up to and reveal your deepest, craziest health concerns:  "Doctor, am I growing a third arm out from my back?"  "I think I have the Dengue Fever!?"  "I know I shouldn't obsess with WebMD, but they said...." "Ok, really how do I stop getting older?".

You also want a doctor that will give you the time to voice those concerns. I don't wanna feel like part of the herd being shuffled through the gate. I AM NOT A SHEEP! Take the time, lemme ask my ridiculous questions. Try and act like you are interested in my crazy and unsubstantiated health concerns!

After searching and asking around, I learned of a very good doctor through friends named Dr. Phillip Tobash ... but of course, his first appointment was months out. NEVER FAILS. I found another doctor (also recommended by friends) by the name of Dr. Benjamin Darhun. I did some research online and was happy with the reviews I read.

My first visit with Dr. Darhun was the best damn visit I could have hoped for. I opened up to him concerning my health issues and was immediately put at ease. I then got out the list ... no wide-eyed reaction, he calmly stated, "OK, let's see what ya got" with a smile.

Dr. Darhun took the time I needed to go through everything. Every visit has been good if not great. He listened to me, asked questions, and allowed me to follow up his answers without feeling a bit rushed.  I was ultimately diagnosed with a hernia and after surgery, the followup care was exemplary. On a side note, if you happen to need a surgeon for a hernia, Dr. Levente Szalai (say that 5 times fast) was equally incredible. He works out of the St. Joseph Medical Group in Reading, PA.

It is rare these days that you can develop such a good intimate working relationship with your primary doctor. If you do, keep this doctor forever!!!  I am lucky and I know it. If I could I'd have Dr. Szalai perform every surgery I may ever need. I would put the man on speed dial one down below Golden China and Dino's Pizza.  I DO have my priorities.

http://www.healthgrades.com/physician/dr-benjamin-darhun-ybqpn
http://www.healthgrades.com/physician/dr-levente-szalai-yp48y

Ultimately, of course, the decision is yours and yours alone. Like it or not, you develop a personal relationship with your doctor and mechanic. Why settle for mediocrity when it comes to your health or your car? It comes down to who do you trust in the long term. Don't make the decision lightly


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