During residency, one of my junior residents, let’s call him Jimmy, asked me for book recommendations. I told him some good books, and mentioned one book that was absolutely essential for our residency. Our main Sports attending was in love with it and would nag you on that rotation unless you had it. And it was actually a really good book.
Jimmy didn’t buy the book. He took it out from the library and agreed it was a good book, but he didn’t want to buy it. He told me he’d just take it out from the library during rotations where he needed it. He said he didn’t want to actually buy any books during residency when he could get them for free from the library.
OK, yes, residents are not exactly rolling in dough. But Jimmy was married to a hospitalist, who was probably pulling in about $200,000 per year. He had no kids and wasn’t planning on having any for at least a few years. I don’t know his debt situation, but I’m fairly sure he was doing better financially than me and my student husband and baby requiring a nanny. So I was seriously kind of irritated by his refusal to spend $40 on a good book.
What was up with that?
("Wouldn't it be easier to buy your own copy of the Bible?" "Sure, maybe on a librarian's salary.")