Medicine surrounds us. Like a second atmosphere it's every. where, permeating into everything. Go to work, it's medicine. Come home and read the paper, there's medicine on the front page. Open a magazine, there's illness everywhere. Turn on the television, and a thousand fly on the wall docu-soaps scream out at you. Sleep medicine, breathe medicine, eat medicine. We're a nation truly obsessed, unable to live for the present, and running frantically from the inevitable. So perhaps it's not so surprising that even the most innocuous of things have been caught up in our tangled medical lives. I just never realised until recently how bad the situation had become.
Two weeks ago, cruising south on the M6 motorway, surrounded by a thousand irate drivers and the hiss of a thousand stomach ulcers, I suddenly noticed the number plate ahead of me, and the three letter code TIA. Suspicious, I looked