So, I'm getting ready to see my next patient when I hear my nurse bust out laughing. I ask her what's so funny, and she points to my mental status exam on my last patient. For those of you non-providers, that's the section of my note where I comment on the patient's appearance, behavior, mood, affect, cognition, etc. Often, this is a cursory "Calm, content, cooperative" when the check-in is routine ("Just gimme a refill and I'm good to go!"). Sometimes I will write something unique to help me remember which patient it is, such as "Looks like Wallace Shawn" or some similar attribute.
For this patient, who I saw 11-3-08, I wrote "McCain-Palin button; pleasant nonetheless :)"