He had a smudge on his forehead

I had a patient in with a very dirty forehead. In fact, it looked like someone was playing a joke on him and had put dirt on the forehead rest of our topo/auto-refractor. In fact, it was my second patient in a row that had the same sort of smudge. I nonchalantly pulled out an alcohol prep, wiped the smudge off the surprised patient (a 46-year-old, conservatively dressed male) and said “You had some dirt on your forehead. I just thought I’d wipe it off before we begin.” He had a surprised look on his face then, smiling, replied back “It’s actually ash because it’s Ash Wednesday. In fact, I’m a priest and heading to a Mass right after my exam today.” Dr. Greg Evans, Evans Eyecare, Palm Desert, CA

This article originally appeared in the May 2015 edition of INVISION.