The following is not FACTUALLY accurate. Details have been changed, things deleted, stuff made up, all to protect identity. But it is 100% absolutely true.
"What is your religious background?" the patient catches me off guard.
I try to make as banal a reply as I can think of and respond with, "Presbyterian."
Said with the zeal of southern Baptist, the patient replies, "Well, just as in your religion you are encouraged to proselytize, I am going to do the same. Do you eat meat? Because if you do, now you know that it is a sin and that when you stand in front of your maker, all the blood of those animals will be on your head."
"Soooooo, obviously you're a vegetarian for moral reasons?" I ask redundantly and stupidly. I'm trying to recover from this question that came out of left field. Hell, it didn't come from left field. It didn't even come from the ballpark.
"I'll have to keep that in mind. Thank you........Now can you please tell me a bit more about your back pain?"