The jangling ring of a bedside telephone pierces the silence of a physician's bedroom at 2:35 AM.
Phil? How are you? Were you asleep?
Hello. This is Dr Warren.
Phil? Phil? Can you hear me? You sound awful! Do you have a cold?
Oh, Ron. No, I don't have a cold. What time is it?
Listen, Phil, you remember Mrs Carlyle, the car dealer's wife: She has an aunt visiting here who has a friend in Mt Pleasant. You know, Mt Pleasant was where the nursing service had their outing, ffrr..., phragh, sss....
Ron, what is the matter? (Lapsing into unfocused somnolence, making a conscious effort to find out who he is, where he is, and what is being said to him.)
Phil, are you sure you don't have a cold? You sound all stuffed up.
Leo A. Gordon. argh... rumph... zzz... A Plea for the Medical Précis. JAMA. 1982;248(11):1300. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03330110014004