- Pimping is generally considered the dark side of Socratic instruction [Reference]
“On the surface, the aim of pimping appears to be Socratic instruction. The deeper motivation, however, is political. Proper pimping inculcates the intern with a profound and abiding respect for his attending physician while ridding the intern of needless self-esteem. Furthermore, after being pimped, he is drained of the desire to ask new questions…” from Brancati FL. The Art of Pimping. JAMA 262(1989):890.
- William Harvey
- William Harvey is believed to have started pimping students as early as 1628. He wrote lamenting his students’ lack of enthusiasm [Reference]
“They know nothing of Natural Philosophy, these pin-heads. Drunkards, sloths, their bellies filled with Mead and Ale. O that I might see them pimped!”
- Eye witness testimony:
“Rounded with Osler today. Riddles house officers with questions. Like a Gatling gun. Welch says students call it ‘pimping.’ Delightful.”- Abraham Flexner”
- Photographic evidence:
- The ‘muffin‘ is a technique that relies on a basic human aversion to seeing other people speak with their mouths full.
- The position of the hand-held muffin should correlate with the product of the likelihood of being targeted by the pimper multiplied by the likelihood of the muffin-holder not knowing the answer.
- If a question is about to be directed at the pimpee, and the pimpee does not know the answer, the muffin should be rapidly inserted into the pimpee’s mouth. [Reference]
- Detsky, clearly a physician of great wisdom, advises the pimpee to “feign choking should the pimper be sufficiently inhuman (usually a surgeon) to still direct a question at a person with a muffin-filled mouth.” If you then resuscitate yourself with a back slap — or even better, a precordial thump — bystanders will applaud you and you will never be pimped again. [Reference]
- A fool-proof method of pimpee defence, developed in New Zealand, that should be used only when all other methods have failed.
- Here is an example of its appropriate use
…and remember kids…pimping can be fun<