Names and Stuffing/Dressing

I realize that my last name is complicated. However, there are still unacceptable things to call me.

I was born with a Polish last name that isn’t quite pronounced the way it’s spelled. It actually used to be far more complicated, but my great grandfather had changed it, assuming that people would still know the basic pronunciation of the Polish language. That essentially means that I was always really good at identifying telemarketers as a kid, since they always said my last name with two syllables instead of three.

For most of my patients, I introduce myself as Dr. So and So, but then normally tell them that they can call me by my first name if a wave of confusion washes over their face. However, I always have to say the “doctor” part the first time I meet someone- in the hospital, everyone and their mother is walking around in a long white coat. There’s also the fact that every patient tends to assume that any female they meet in the hospital is a nurse, and then I get paged incessantly about how the “doctor hasn’t been in to see the patient yet” when I’ve spent 30 minutes already that morning explaining everything.

But, I digress. To the story at hand.

It was the same drill as always, “Hi Mr. Patient, I’m Doctor So and So.”

Each day, this gentleman got more and more casual. At first, I was still Dr. My Last Name. Which then became Dr. Megan. Which became Megan.

Which then transformed into something else entirely.

When I was in the process of discharging my patient, he thanked me for providing him with good medical care during his visit.

Except he said, “Thanks Doctor Babygirl, I had a great time.”

When asked, he couldn’t even understand why this wasn’t appropriate to say.

Multiple Names Stuffing/Dressing

Stuffing/Dressingin my family you don’t dare call this by the wrong name unless you want a lecture

Ingredients (makes 3 cups stuffing)

  • 5 slices wheat bread, toasted
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1/4 c dried cranberries
  • 1/2 c white wine
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 tsp poultry seasoning


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Saute onions and celery in the butter (just do all at once- no need to pre-melt the butter) in a medium saucepan.
  3. In a large bowl, rip up toasted bread into small pieces. Add in celery, onions, butter, and cranberries.
  4. Stir in poultry seasoning (sometimes I go up to 1 1/2 tsp).
  5. Add in wine (start with 1/4 cup and continuing adding as the bread soaks up the wine). If necessary, add more wine to soak wheat bread (you want this to be pretty moist so it doesn’t try out).
  6. Salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Stuff into birds (this makes approximately 3 cups) for stuffing or bake in a casserole dish for 30 minutes, covered with aluminum foil, for dressing.
  8. Serve with gravy.

57 thoughts on “Names and Stuffing/Dressing

  1. Ummmmm… calling you “babygirl” is inappropriate???? 😯

    1. When called Doctor Babygirl by my patients, yes

  2. stuffing…inside the bird…
    dressing…alongside the bird…
    I’m just saying…but, to each his own…

  3. funny post :)–recipe looks terrific, can’t wait to try it!

    1. Thanks! The baking temp can be a bit longer depending on your baking dish, but just check it after 20 minutes or so and see if the stuffing looks drier

      1. Thanks!!

  4. Great read! I understand the name deal 🙂

  5. OK, Dr. So-and-So. I can truly appreciate how people can massacre your last name unless it’s Jones, Smith or Anderson. I get called Mcgray, Magray, & Gary all of the time and my name is simple. Now, I come from a medical family with a physician father and grandfather. Little did they know they were rearing a lawyer. 😮 At the prime age of 56, when they did surgery on my wife, I commented to Dr. Whatever-his name-was that he reminded me of a story about my Dad’s patients when he retired. He referred them all to my closest childhood friend, valedictorian of the class, nephew of my doctor and son of my parents’ doctor. They referred to him as the “Boy Scout on the Hill,” even though his tenure as a Boy Scout was as short as mine, which wasn’t very long. Now, at the age of 58, he and I chuckle over this story and wish we were “Boy Scouts.” Just be glad the patient didn’t call you “Dr. Cutie Pie” or “Dr. Baby Cakes.” Odds are he would have known those names were inappropriate. 😉 Love the recipe for dressing. Glad it didn’t have any sutures or gauze. 😉

    1. Nice medical reference to dressing. I can tell you were raised by doctors 😉

      Try doing a month at the VA. There I did get called “toots” on a regular basis

      1. Our son is a disabled vet so we are at the Dallas VA frequently. It’s an “interesting” place on multiple levels. As an aside, my favorite kitchen tools for Thanksgiving are some suture needles my Dad gave my mom and she passed on to me. They truss a turkey better than anything I have ever found. You just have to be careful because they are sharp beyond belief.

      2. It’s not the young vets that make assumptions…it’s the 80+ year old ones that found in WWII…

        I might use surgical scissors to cut my bangs in between haircuts…

  6. I never get enough of a good dose of laughter and ideas for new creations in the kitchen with your recipes, especially with being a culinary student and all. Always inspiring and fun to read! I also wanted to let you know that you were nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award!

    1. Thanks! In the next life I might go to culinary school 😉

      1. No problem! ^,.,^ Haha, I’m sure the recipes you’ll come up with even then will be stupendous!

      2. Considering I have a wealth of medical school debt to pay back, that culinary school in the next life thing is pretty far away…

      3. One never knows! That’s the beauty of it! But I wish you luck in your career and that you enjoy it all the more in the years to come. Best Wishes!

  7. I grew up in small, Midwestern town with a foreign Asian name that was long and complicated. All the other foreign Asian named doctors went by their shortened first names and never introduced themselves by their last names. I also shortened my name to Chu and no one ever called me by my full name, not even my Grandmother. In college, I had an economics professor named Dr. Mustafa Sawami and he was one of the best professors I’ve ever encountered. Except he thought Chu was a hard name and named me Megan. It was a small school, so some people actually thought that was my name. It was hilarious! Probably would have been less hilarious if I had been renamed Babygirl 🙂

    1. I’m far more partial to Megan, obviously 😉

  8. It will get better. Time will take care of that.

    1. In medicine it’ll be at least 10 years before people might think I’m their doctor…doesn’t help I look too young…

  9. I can’t believe people still think women are nurses not doctors?! Do you live in rural America or something? How annoying for you.

      1. I love Chicago, very fun city!!

  10. God, the crap women doctors have to put up with… Wonder how many male doctors would like being addressed, “Dr. Little Man.” Ken

    1. My best friend’s husband is a male nurse and he gets mistaken for a doctor all the time…

      1. And yes, he even specifies “I am your male nurse” hahahaha

  11. I thought that we had patients who assumed all ladies are nurses here but then looks like they are spread all around the world. Why cannot people I say people for even women do the same.

  12. Love the sound of that stuffing (looks around for something to stuff just so I can make it). I have a sister who’s a dentist and when she was younger she was forever being asked when they would get to ‘see the dentist’. She has her name on the door of the practice now, so one hopes it happens less often, but I bet it still does sometimes. Sometimes I wonder if we really are in the 21st Century!

    Oh, and as for the name thing, you have my sympathy. My first name is short, and completely phonetic to English speakers (which Polish, bless it’s consonant-love, often isn’t). And yet, do you think people can spell it? Sigh. I think it’s only manners to try to get someone’s name right, but many Australians (and Americans, apparently) have tin ears. They just don’t listen.

    1. I have a huge 2 by 3 inch tag on my white coat that says “physician” and this still happens…they get cards with my name listed as their doctor…and it still happens…

      People misspell Megan and it’s simple. I can’t imagine having a more complicated name.

  13. Oh sexism is alive and well! Thank goodness you have a sense of humour. My best friend and I coined a phrase for those times we run into people like this. “Boot to the head!” 🙂 Made us feel better at any rate.

    1. This is at least a regular hospital. I did a month at the VA back in med school and it was far more sexist

  14. Haha, I can relate. I’m Norwegian. My first years abroad I didn’t mind my name being butchered. Bear in mind that ALL my three names are equally confusing, so I don’t really have the option of forsaking one for the other.

    After a few months it started getting annoying. A third or fourth correction following each introduction, and still no one would get it even remotely right. Variations included Evil and Invalid, even Rusty from a race car driver (i’ve been told) named Rusty Ingall (my name is Ingvild fyi. A bit like Ingrid, which EVERYONE knows but it’s still not me).

    Eventually I stopped trying, and resorted to acceptance of a hated English abbreviation of my first name. It doesn’t sound good in any language, and in Norwegian it makes me sound like someones grandpa. I introduce myself to new people by my middle name, Kristine. It makes life a whole lot easier. And no, the “e” is not silent.

    On my first visit back to Norway I couldn’t stop rejoicing in the sound of my own name, correctly pronounced!

    Fun post, thanks 🙂

    1. Ingvild – how do you pronounce this Norwegian name?

      It’s my last name, but I don’t speak Norwegian, and I have no idea. Just curious. (She seems very funny, but I don’t get a word.)

    2. See, even if I went to Poland, my great-grandfather changed the spelling of my last name so it’s even now pronounced differently, so technically my name is never pronounced right unless I go back to the original spelling

    3. I feel your pain! As an American with a first name butchered by most Americans, it hasn’t been easy to live in Norway. I usually just correct people to call me by my nickname, Claire, but I cringe every time someone sees my name in print and tries to phonetically pronounce it as Slair-ruh. But, admittedly, I butcher their names just as much as they butcher mine, so I suppose it’s fair. At least having married a Norwegian no one mispronounces my last name now! 😀

  15. LOL! I understand your pain with last names, being a Polack myself. I’ve got some shirttail relation that I can pronounce, but have to look it up every time I need to spell it. P.S. Love the stories and recipes. Keep it up!

    1. I’ve got a few of those relations myself…I can never remember if it’s jcj or cjc…too many consonants!

  16. just back onto names, i’m also a Megan do you ever get annoyed with many many different ways people try and pronounce it?
    *end rant*

    1. The ugliest spelling I ever saw was “Maygun”.

      Mine was supposed to be Meaghan, but since my last name leads to so many problems, my father told my mother to take pity on me and spell it normally 😉

    1. Thanks! Sadly I’m even done with med school…it was far easier to blog then since I had more time!

  17. Sheesh! The things you doctors endure! I would’ve wanted to snap back with something, but usually clever comebacks get stuck in my “did they really say that?” thoughts 🙂

    1. I’m become truly excellent at biting my tongue…

  18. I feel ya with the last name butchering. I have heard my married name pronounced countless ways, 99% of the time they are wrong. It has all of 5 letters and is constantly spelled incorrectly as well. Though I have had this last name for 9 years, my mother still cannot spell it properly.

  19. I have the same problem with my name!

  20. Another funny story. People say anything. 🙂

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