Thursday, March 24, 2011

Slipper-y Slope

I just don't tolerate being yelled at, especially on the phone.

Some old guy who had left the department with his wife about 10 minutes before I got there called, all agitated.


In the middle of his rant, I calmly but firmly said, "Sir I need you to stop yelling at me and calm down; I can't help you if you continue to raise your voice because I will be terminating this conversation; do you hear me sir? I need you to lower your voice right now and tell me that you understand"

The Talker rarely hears me use my Command Voice; he raised an eyebrow.
Meanwhile, the agitated old may continues to scream through my Noise Abatement Procedure.

Big sigh. "OK. I'm not yelling. My wife lost her slippers between there and the Mother Ship. I got a call from someone telling me I could pick them up at the front desk. I don't know which front desk, if it's at the hospital, or there, or at the ambulance. Can you find out"

"Sure, give my your phone number and I will try to find out. I can tell you that the slippers are not here (because I put the phone down and looked in the dirty utility room while you were busy trying to blow an aneurysm). I will call you soon"
I took down his number and called the ER at the Mother Ship.

I spoke to Katelyn, who went through the motions and was not very helpful, but she didn't have the slippers either. She said she would look out for them, though.

30 minutes later, I got a phone call from the Missus of Agitated Husband. She very calmly told me the same story. I explained that they were not in my department, nor were they located in the ER downtown. I gave her Katelyn's name and number though, because payback is a bitch.

ANOTHER 30 minutes later, Agitated Husband came to the ER and started yelling at Ellen. As always, trying to protect Ellen, I jumped up and ran around to the front desk; Julie was already on it. She takes no shit from anyone, but does it in a nice way. She told him to sit in the waiting room while she investigated, but he insisted on sitting at her desk.

Now I am all about helping people out, but come on; slippers? What is it with these slippers? What could possibly cause such angst? What the hell, are they the original Ruby Slippers? Diamond encrusted? Made of cats? Mink? Sheesh, take a chill.

By now I was bored with the whole ridiculous scenario so I took $10 out of my wallet, prepared to give it to the guy to buy the wife a new pair of blue fuzzy slippers to replace the old, worn out, filthy, stinky, cat hair laden, piss sodden slippers.

Julie, meanwhile, discovers an important piece of information that both the patient and Agitated Husband neglected to tell me; that the patient was admitted to the hospital as an inpatient FOUR DAYS AGO; her slippers are at the front desk on the 4th floor.

"Oh", says Agitated Husband, now mollified. "I'm not driving down there today".

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Bitch Box...Take a Number

For some reason, our CEO of less than a year thought it was a good idea to have a suggestion board on the hospital intranet web page. It is pretty entertaining; it is actually more of a bitch board. I am not sure what the educational level is of most of the individuals who post, but let's just say the spelling and grammar are not a priority. Neither is respectful, well thought out posting. Mostly it is about whining. I read it every day because eventually, the Clipboard Peeps are going to get tired of disrespectful and frivolous whining and pull the plug. For example:

"During the day the macaroni and cheese is $3.00 for a large scoop and $1.50 for a small scoop. The other evening I only wanted a little, so I took a small scoop. I was charged $3.00. When I pointed out to the cashier that the sign said it was less for a small scoop, she said it was $3.00 no matter how much you took! This is unfair; it should be a consistent price for both lunch and dinner!"

The food services manager replied that it was all a misunderstanding (yeah, a $1.50 misunderstanding in the cashier's pocket), that the evening cashier had been spoken to and that if the individual would present herself to the cafeteria she would get a refund and a free meal voucher. Score! One of the easier problems to solve.

Someone (and I have my suspicions) from our own ER wrote the following:

"I wish that someone would reconsider installing WiFI in our department. We have both outpatients and ER patients, many of whom are here for hours and hours with nothing to do but read a bunch of old National Geographics and watch a dinky old TV. This is unacceptable and crappy customer service. Since we are required to have closed captioning, the TV is so old that the captioning takes up half the screen. Besides that the TV is on an old rickety table that is a danger to young unruly kidz (actual spelling)and you can only see the TV anyway if you are right in front of it"

The response came from one of the undersecretary Suits in Charge of Stupid Shit:
"We appreciate that your facility is something of a unique entity. While we have not budgeted for the installation of WiFi for this fiscal year, you will be getting a new, larger, wall mounted television in the near future". I call that...not exactly compromise, but we do get something. I hope that the Mother Ship day shift won't be missing ESPN on their cafeteria TV much.

Here's another:
"What is the policy on charge pay? It seems that some of the managers give it out, and some don't. If a manager is on during the day and up to her butt (actually written) in paper work or in meetings with no real understanding of what is going on with the floor, she is not actually managing, now is she? The person who is dealing with the day to day, admissions, and generally overseeing of the floor should be compensated for taking on the added responsibility"

Of course the Head Cheese, that is, the Big Stinky Cheese, wanted name, rank and serial number of the complainant. No resolution that I can see, since most of the managers (who haven't been fired) have been looking for ways to cut, cut, cut. Let's cheat nurses out of charge pay, good idea. Excellent leadership.

This was another nugget of awesomeness:
"How many calories are in the large chocolate chip cookies sold in the lobby coffee shop?"


And because nobody has the balls to say they don't like it, this little gem:
" What is the policy on co-workers peddling their own or their children's or grandchildren's fundaisers? I should not be subjigated to the constant baerage (actual spelling on both) of cookies, candles, wrapping paper or lottery tickets when I come to work".

Douchie complainer was referred to current policy, chapter and verse. And advised to grow a pair and just say no.

One individual, having obviously submitted several complaints on the same issue, the new health insurance provider for the company, was not satisfied with the response:

"Why can't you ever give a straight answer insted (actual spelling) of dancing around the issue? It is extremely frustrating!"

Yeah, we feel your pain.

"Last year there was a new policy that clinical managers would be working two clinical shifts per month; in the last 7 months Floor X has not seen Manager X slinging bedpans, giving meds, or doing any actual nursing tasks that are directly related to patient care. In fact, I have never seen our manager actually touch a patient. How do you respond to this" (Name of manager and floor removed by administrator)

Big Stinky Cheese: "All floor managers have been directed to take an active and participatory clinical role two shifts per month; we feel it is an important leadership activity. We have reinforced with all clinical managers that this is a priority".

In response, I would just like to say:
1. Go Greyhound! Don't know if it is just this manager, but I doubt it.
2. "Activity"??!! WTF.

More later.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Today's Last Patient of the Night

When we have been patient-free for the last 2 hours of the shift, the final 10 minutes before we release the crocs into the moat, pull up the drawbridge and lock the castle can be stressful. We lock the various cabinets, restock what needs to be restocked, and watch the camera.

Sure enough, at 10:5o someone pulls into the parking lot.

Sigh. Hopefully it is something quick; the doors may lock at 11 PM, but the empathy shuts off at 10 PM.

It is an annoying child with a really annoying father. The father decides that the most important thing on his agenda upon entering the department is taking a piss. I decide to interview the kid; she appeared to be anywhere between 11 and 13.

Reason for visit: "My ear is swollen".

Hmmm. It appears the kid had gotten her ears pierced 6 days before and had a swollen ear lobe for 2 days. NOW it's an emergency. Not.

The father was back, so the kid I ignored since she had a steady stream of verbal diarrhea going: "What are you going to do? Will you have to take out the earring? What will happen to the hole? Will it hurt? Will I need stitches? Why is the sky blue? Do you have any chocolate?"
This, apparently, is the second time the girl had gotten an infection in a freshly pierced ear lobe.

Annoying child had fat earlobes to begin with, just the kind that don't do well with the standard sized pierced ear studs; what she needed was some kind of hoop. Or much longer studs. Or not to pierce her ears at all.

Cripes already had his jacket on and one foot out the door when I told him he had another patient. "Not abdominal pain....something pretty quick", I said to him as he looked crestfallen after a 16 hour shift.

The first thing this 11 year old did was to PUT HER HANDS OVER BOTH HER EARS. Unacceptable. Annoying father was a big help as you can imagine. Why is it that as we approach closing time the IQ of the patients drops exponentially?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Schedule Crap

I covered the day shift for Mikki for a few hours today. It was me and SIC, who regaled me with the fascinating tale of her husband's Lasek surgery escapades. As if I needed an inducement to take a nap. Hate getting up for the day shift.

There are boatloads of outpatients during the day but not a whole lotta ER patients; they all wait to come in after 3 PM. One young girl with a probable kidney stone was sent to the Mother Ship for a CT scan. The Talker did some fast work. I had time to do some school work for awhile, albeit half-heartedly.

Jane and SIC are friends; they are neighbors and share religious leanings. They spend a lot of time together even though Jane knows SIC walks all over her; takes over during staff meetings; tries to bully Jane into other stuff like, get this, "I think we all need to wear the same color scrubs; like this teal and blue, and always wear a white lab coat!".

Hahahahahaha! No.

I have one advantage over Jane, though; for some reason, SIC is afraid of me, or afraid of riling me up, or afraid of being on the receiving end of one of my rants, or just afraid of not being one of the cool kids. Which she is not. But I am always pleasant and cordial to her, so I don't know why...oh, bull. Of course I know; she just feels inferior, but to be honest, I am not an ER nurse snob when people are doing the work to the best of their ability. And she is very caing and giving. Are you convinced? Didn't think so. No really, she is a good nurse. I would want her to take care of my family members, it's just that she is lacking in the communication department and thinks she is the boss, hence the name. If she was manager, I would quit because it would be unbearable. And that's all I have to say about that.

Anyway, we got to talking about the schedule, Jane and SIC and I. SIC very cautiously approached a notation on the schedule that I had made for Easter; "available". She really wanted it off, and it was a good thing she asked today because I might have made plans by tomorrow.

"Sure, I'll work it for you; I don't mind, and I don't have any plans. Easter really isn't on the agnostic liturgical calendar". I think that bothered her. A little.

The schedule is usually a bone of contention with some. We are a nursing staff numbering about 10. Almost everyone is flexible when it comes to the schedule, with the possible exception of Kerry; she has little kids and a husband who works evenings in their restaurant, so I certainly don't have a problem with that. That said, there is absolutely no need to have the schedule done FOUR MONTHS in advance. Talk about painting yourself into a corner. New Cathy is famous for "getting the new schedule started" even though I told her she is forbidden to do it more than two months in advance. New Cathy isn't afraid of me, apparently, but from another standpoint it really isn't fair that she gets first pick of the evening shift EVERY MONTH. Jane and I are going to have a little discussion about that. I hate to go that route, but I will if I have to; the day shift take turns on a rotating basis putting down their preferred schedule and I am not above insisting on that if I must.

SIC let it slip that Lisa, a day shifter, has started a schedule (that includes the
4th of July, sheesh!) and has kept it in her bag so as not to enrage me; I thought it was both funny and pathetic, so I left her this note:

"Dear Lisa,

You coward! I know that you have the schedule started and are afraid to post it...SEE ME!!!


I was kidding of course, Lisa is a good egg; if we worked together all the time we would constantly be in trouble.

The problem is that the schedule for the 4rh of July would open up a huge can of worms. Four of us want part of the first 2 weeks of July off. My name is second on the list after Mikki, who counts every second of time, every fragment of charge pay, and has a persecution complex. She just always thinks there is a conspiracy in which she is being targeted. It's bullshit, of course. She and I actually worked last July 4th. I really don' t care since I need a lot of the month of June of for various social engagements. I can always use July 4th as a bargaining chip, but Mikki had off Christmas week, a week off in February and is going to a conference in May for which she needs time off.

Me? I took a week off at the beginning of December, one day in February, and have been paying in blood for every Sunday off since last September between Mikki, Sherry and SIC who needs practically the month of April off and which I have accomodated.

I am thinking that I will probably be off July 4th.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Paddy's Day

Southern Cathy and I worked St. Patrick's day last year; it was crazy, crazy busy, of course. We never got dinner, a snack or a chance to go the bathroom. We wanted to go to Kerry's for a pint.

Kerry's restaurant usually has a pretty good St. Patrick's day festival; Irish dancers, a band or two and more Guinness than you can shake a shillelagh at.

Of course we were starving when we got there a little before midnight. Kerry was helping out at the bar as she usually does on that holiday; tradition. We were crushed that the kitchen was closed. But hey, Kerry had a back up for us.

"I'll get you some corned beef pizza, you'll love it! I invented the recipe myself"

Eeeuw, I thought. I would rather she put cheese and sauce on a pizza box. I loathe everything about corned beef; the smell, the texture and the especially the taste. Nana made a boiled dinner twice a year, and I made sure to leave the house for that event (something we talked about just this morning). The odor permeated the house and my clothes for days. And to add insult to injury, the leftovers were turned into unappetizing lumps of mystery-meat-like pattys known as corned beef hash. I'm sure it was delicious in its own way, but I ate it with extreme prejudice and completely covered in ketchup. At the time, it was enough to gag a maggot. Nana loves corned beef; she was headed out with her friends to the pub, anxious to listen to Irish music, drink green beer and of course eat boiled dinner. As I said....eeeuw.

Seriously? Corned beef pizza?

We were so hungry we actually liked it. Everything is better with beer a proper pint. Can't wait to get off work, hope you get some of your own!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

How to Tell a Lie

Candace, the day xray tech had an outpatient whom, she said, "was nasty and had attitude". I guess he had asked her if she "saw" anything on his xray, which normally annoys the crap out of her.

Jane, my boss said, "Why don't you tell him you see plenty, but you won't tell him what?"
Candace didn't think it was funny; apparently there are strict rules on what they can tell patients, and she usually tells them "I am not allowed to read xrays; that is the responsibility of the radiologist". I guess a lot of patients just get douchy about it, and blame the tech; perhaps it is all in the way the rebuff is presented.

I suggested a few things Candace could tell patients who wanted to know if she "saw" anything:
1. "I once saw a solar eclipse"
2. "I saw the Sound of Music in the theater when I was 10"
3. "I saw an image of the Holy Family in a grilled cheese sandwich!"
4. "I see dead people?"

Candace doesn't have much of a sense of humor.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Another Seinfeld ER Moment

So, this guy brings in his 69 year old father with some back pain.

"He fell".

Sonny didn't know anything about his medical history except "High blood pressure, dementia and he got his legs cut off". The only med he knows for sure is oxycodone; for chronic hip and back pain.

The man, I'll call him Buck, has pretty piss-poor short term memory. I get him triaged and into a wheelchair and into the waiting room with sonny to await registration.

Moments later, Ellen comes looking for me.

Ellen: "Did that son leave? This gentleman doesn't even know his address, poor thing. Did he leave a number?".

Me: "Nope. Guess he's gone. No forwarding address, either".

I put Buck into a room and help him get undressed. He has all kinds of information to give me; about how a motor vehicle accident cut off both his legs, but they were able to sew them back on. About how his wife died. About how he doesn't drive anymore. About how he used to be an electrician.

What Buck can't tell me is how he fell or where his useless son went.

Cripes was a little busy tonight. He's been working a lot lately, seems like every other shift I get to work with him. It was a while before he was able to see Buck. By then the useless son has returned

"I had to give the car keys to my fiancee". Really. How...interesting.

Useless son continued to be on his cell phone, in and out of the department. "I had to talk to my fiancee". Really. You actually have a girlfriend?

Shortly thereafter, another call to the fiancee; "I had to tell my fiancee my work schedule". Really. Yawn. Dude, I really don't give a shit.

Useless son doesn't have much of an idea about what actually happened to Dad, which prompted yet another call guessed it..."my fiancee to find out what happened".

What a specimen. "I wonder what happened to my fiancee. I know she's here somewhere. Have you seen my fiancee? Tell my fiancee I'm looking for her. I have lost my fiancee, the poor baby".

Me: Maybe the dingo ate your baby.

Buck was fine except for his useless progeny, who I still can't believe even had a girlfriend, let alone a fiancee. I guess there really is someone for everyone.

Saturday, March 12, 2011


I thought I might share with you this nugget attached to my online classroom:

Tsunami Warning

At this time, although the tsunami conditions are continuing to be monitored, classes will proceed as normal.

Ok. Just to clarify:
1. The events in Japan are horrific and mind boggling; what does that have to do with a school located on the East Coast. Of the United States.
2. It is unlikely that the online environment will be affected, unless they want to blame tsunami on last week's electronic screwing over of a vast number of students due to non-existent "financial problem".


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Nice Day, Nice for Some

A very nice day brings out the kid in people I guess. It also brings out the douche mongers, like this guy:

He dragged himself with a very high degree of drama (missing only the audio, which was "Oh, woe is me!!! Woe is me!!!) into the triage area ever so slowly before plopping into the chair breathlessly. Wife started doing the talking until I shut her up.

"I fell. In Rite Aid parking lot on ICE! Can you believe they don't do anything about ice in the parking lot of a pharmacy where sick and injured patients need to walk?? It's a travesty!!!"

(um, no, I can't imagine. it makes no sense. it is New Hampshire, one of the coldest and snowiest winters on record where there remains no place to put the snow and SHOCKER, here, there is ice. Just so you know, we have had similar falls and insignificant injuries from a number of equally tort-minded, upstanding, non-working, disability-having, suck -the- life-out-of-the-system douchebags such as yourself).

Me: " Yup. Did you take any pain relievers, elevate or use ice?"

DB: "No, we came right over!"

Me: "I see.
And what is it that you've hurt today?"

DB: "My head, shoulder, wrist, elbow, hand, little finger, hip, knee, ankle and foot"

Me: "Did you hit your head?"

DB: "No! it just missed the bumper of the car! But now I have a migraine!"

Me: (completely losing interest). "Well, you've certainly had an eventful last 8 minutes"
(that was sarcasm, but I bet you knew that; he didn't)
help. police. murder.

This was the first patient of the evening and my eyes are already rolling out of my head.

The day shift, Kelly and Lisa, are finishing up what was not a good day with Gil. They think he orders too many tests and gets all up in people's business unnecessarily. Maybe he does, but they're not going to change him so I just go with it, expect to be busy and make a lot of phone calls on his behalf and no schoolwork done. I like the guy; he's smart and funny and totally gets my sense of humor. Things get done; it's not time to panic 'til it's time to panic. I like that.

I'd much rather work with Gil than Parvati who wants to put an IV in every chronic paineur and drug-seeker and give them Dilaudid; that gets really old, really fast. Her cultural "sky is falling" affect sometimes annoys the crap out of me. I frequently wait until she barks 10 orders at me (at least 5 of them conflicting or redundant) and then just list them back. She changes her mind often, but doesn't always share. ALSO WHEN SHE TALKS IT IS LIKE IT IS ALL IN CAPITALS WITH AN EXCLAMATION POINT! I JUST CAN'T GET THAT EXCITED! A FOLEY CATH IN A PATIENT WITH AN 02 SAT OF 85% IS NOT THE PRIORITY!

The other day a lady came in with "atrial fibrillation". At least, that's what she thought it was; "it's never been documented", she said. "Well", I said to her, "it has now." It was supraventricular tachycardia, or SVT

In a couple of minutes Mikki and I had set the patient up with an IV; she was monitored, on O2 and the EKG was in my hand. I walked into the room next door where Parvati was telling the patient about her daughter's wedding and wordlessly handed it to her.

Parvati came in like Chicken Little ("the sky is falling! the sky is falling!").
She had a few words with the patient and did a cursory exam, then told us "LET'S GIVE SOME CARDIZEM!!"
Me: " I have 6mg of Adenosine ready to go unless you prefer Cardizem; perhaps I missed a really fast atrial fib?" (I never believed it for a minute; I know my SVT)

Sigh. I know. She is a little wearing, but kind to the patients. And she does dental blocks, so that is kind of fun. We see fewer dental paineurs when she is on.

Anyway, remember the whiny gone-to-ground douchetard in triage? I parked him at the registration desk, and a young man comes in swathed with what looks like several slings and a couch cushion; he is being lead by his Dad who was wearing ski boots. The nearest ski area is at least 30 minutes away.

I waved them directly into a treatment room, which didn't go over well with the douchetard based on the pained expression he shot me.

Long story short; the kid had a fracture/dislocation of his shoulder. Nice kid, nice family. The dad shook my hand about 90 minutes later on their way out, with pain relief, xrays, reduction and follow-up accomplished; he thanked us for taking care of them so quickly. It was the first of two shoulder fractures and one really nasty tibia fracture, 3 admissions and two transfers.

The tibia fracture was Cripe's fav patent of the night. In answer to the question "How did you hurt yourself"came the following responses:
1. "I fell down the stairs. I had a few beers."
2. "I fell off a stool, I was just sitting on it; I had a couple of six packs".
3. "I was just dancing around to reggae music; I've been drinking all day, I think I killed close to a case".

He was admitted for surgery, poor guy. I felt bad because he was also having some social issues (no, really?) centered around his choice of roommates. Whose name he didn't know. Who refused to leave. And who apparently was not paying him rent (although he WAS paying in beer. Not an ideal arrangement).

So, by now I'm sure you're DYING to know how many fractures the douchetard had sustained, how long in traction, how many days out of work, etc, etc, etc.?

Not. One. But Cripes gave him a single Percocet to make up for his long wait while we took care of the young man's shoulder. Him so good!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Please, Just Read the Sign!

Worked with Cripes last night, always a treat. Stuff gets done, people are seen quickly, and he's a hoot to work with. But still, it was busy not only in the ER, but for all of the outpatient crap as well.

Because of a call-out we only had one secretary to register the boat-load of both out-patients and ER patients. None of which had any actual emergent condition:
Flu-like symptoms, seen yesterday by PCP; not magically better
Sore throat, seen yesterday by PCP; not magically better.
Dental pain
Dental pain
Chronic abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, "I have a bowel obstruction"; 3 visits in last week, one hospital admission, abusing laxatives and enemas, taking oxy's.
And, same guy:
NO evidence of bowel obstruction and refuses CT scan.
On Medicare which won't pay for Zofran which is what he comes in for.
Does NOT want pain meds.
Wants surgery and "can't find" a surgeon.
Talks continuously about surgery and insists, insists, insists it is the last thing he wants. Suspect Munchausen, which we won't be fixing this in the ER.

The sign-in list is for out-patients, not ER patients. Nobody ever reads the signs. At least once (maybe 5 or 6 times if we are really busy and people are inordinately stupid) a day someone signs in when they should be an ER patient.

Mary, trying to be helpful, waded into the mass of humanity in the waiting room to ask if anyone had any xray orders.

She discovered that an ER patient with some completely non-emergent problem (that had now missed their pediatrician's appointment, haha) had been waiting an hour for registration. Mary got right on her high horse, adamant that the signage was not clear.

Me: "Mary, the signs are crystal clear; the douchtards just don't take the time to read them".
Mary: "My daughter signed in and waited and she needed to be seen in the ER"
Me: "Mary, your daughter is an engineer; clearly she didn't read the sign".
Mary: "Yes she did, she thought she was an outpatient".
Me: " It VERY CLEARLY states what comprises outpatient status, lab, x-ray, mammo, etc".
Mary: "Well, it says those things in small letters written beside it"
Me: "This is a pointless argument; I am going to draw circles on this paper and ignore you until you go away".

I wrote up another sign.

If nothing else, it will keep people busy. I don't see any loopholes or inconsistancies, do you?

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sunday Funnies (not)

I am beyond pissed.
I have been shut out of, and apparently withdrawn from, my online course Holistic Professional Nursing (which, stupidly, is recycled public health nursing; same book, same instructor). Without warning. For an alleged financial deficit.

This is my last course. I have been taking courses for almost 4 years and have always paid IN CASH. There is no extra work on the part of the university to scrape money from the government or others who are reluctant to pay their bills; I have not been forced to sell my kidney (yet). I have managed to keep it going. I don't even do FAFSA forms. My financial interview went something like this:

Accountant: How do you intend to pay? Will you be taking out loans, applying for scholarships, reimbursement from an employer, state grant, selling a child or any of your internal organs?

Me: Cash

Accountant: Oh, I see. Do you need a payment plan? We could work out a monthly draw from your checking account or a credit card...

Me: I'll make it simple. You tell me how much I owe per class. Then I'll pay it. Does that work?

I have been paid up in full with a zero balance for two weeks. Since my final course was a bit of an ambush, the course was only partially paid; but it was a weekend, and my payment posted a few days later. That was two weeks ago.

My instructor says I am withdrawn from the roster; she had no notification, but said she would work with me once I straightened it out. Of course, there is NOBODY working weekends anywhere in the college. I can't even get a human being on the phone except for tech support, and they are useless. Even for tech issues. No, they don't know the name of the administrator on call.

I spoke to my advisor on Friday before this happened and she sent the forms for graduation. In June. In Savannah. As I understand it, I must have a zero balance on account before that information can even be sent out to the graduate. Two days later, I am still looking forlornly at my account with a ZERO BALANCE while I mourn my 4.0 course GPA grow anxious about the work I can't do since my instructor ignored the part of my email about forwarding the grading rubric. I just don't want to restart this course at the end of the month because some illiterate hamster pushed the wrong button then went home for the weekend, la la la.

As a sacred cash cow, I certainly expected better treatment.
Someone's gonna get an earful tomorrow.

But today, I am doing something much more fun; the taxes! Yes, just go ahead and kick me while I'm down. Annually, I would rather have hot sharp steel needles poked in both my eyes than do the taxes. I get extraordinarily pissy; Mr. Ednurseasauras generally starts sending out feelers in January to get me used to the idea gradually:
"So....with your schedule, I'm thinking that January nearly gone, and your skating trip and studies, February is not a good month for taxes?" (walking on eggshells)
Me: "Let me get a couple of weeks of this course going, then we can look at them".

Now, the requests become more specific:
"'re off this weekend?"
Me: "Yup. I am taking a salsa dance class with Southern Cathy on Saturday then going to the mall to buy granny underwear"
Mr. Ednurseasauras: "Um, okay, yeah (misses the granny underwear reference). How do you feel about looking at the taxes on Sunday?" (ducks behind the couch with the dog in case I decide to throw my coffee cup)
Me: "Well. Ok, but it will end badly, you know it does. We have to do something fun later to make up for it".
Mr. Ednurseasauras: "OK, sure. Whatever you want"
Me: "I really want to go bowling" (I don't, really. I'm just messing with him)
Mr. Ednurseasauras: "I will get stuff organized then". This requires that reams and reams of paper come out and are stacked in organized piles around the living room. Out comes the file box; Mr. Edn mutters, makes notes, gets up to look for something, comes back with another document, makes a phone call. This goes on for a while. In the meantime, Meet the Press (a show which just really sets my teeth on edge) is on, and Mr. Edn occasionally looks up to follow what's going on. Me? I am surfing the web on my laptop, on Facebook and blogging. There is no schoolwork to do, so I'm doing the academic equivalent of nothing.

Me: (after about an hour) "How are we doing over there?"
Mr. Ednurseasauras: (muttering and shuffling) "Alright"
Me: Sigh. "Should I take the dog out?"
Mr. Ednurseasauras: "I need about another 10 minutes of mutter, mutter, grumble, then I should be done"

Then the fun should begin.

Me: "What's all the ruckus about? Aren't you just organizing stuff?"
Mr. Ednurseasauras: "It's the bank interest, it's not totaled. And if you don't have that marked down on the tax form, the bank interest, it gets shot down. all that for a total of.....(consults calculator), $2.25. Between the two banks"
Me: "Couldn't we just make it up?"
Mr. EDn: "I don't think so".
2 1/2 hours later and the taxes are, mercifully, done. Nobody has died, except maybe Tina out of pure boredom, or even sustained injury from flying coffee cups. Eerily civilized I must say. Even his Massachusetts state taxes which are enormously painful and usually requires an accounting degree to figure out; no wonder Mass. is in such dire straits and the economy sucks so bad. I read Mr. Edn my rantings from earlier and he is mildly amused.
Mr. Edn: "How often do you write stuff about me? What are you typing, everything I say?"
Me: "Hold on....(typing)...'everything I say?'....what?, no, I'm just writing random stuff about how you kicked the file box across the room"
Mr. Edn: "What? I did not! You really do make this stuff up!"
Me: "Just enough to protect the innocent".
Mr. Ednurseasauras ever so lightly kicked the file box.
Me: "OK, well I guess I'll just do something really fun now, like the laundry so the day isn't entirely wasted".

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Not today...but someday

New Cathy and I heard the call go out on the scanner for a 48 year old female; CPR in progress. We waited for the radio transmission from the field, fully expecting that the code would be brought our way.

It came: 3 rounds of drugs, intubated, EJ blown but a working IO.

"We'll be a little bit yet; we are still working on extrication"

What!!??? Extrication!!??? No, it couldn't be. Cathy and I stared at each other in mute horror.

I grabbed the phone and punched in dispatch.

"What's the address of that code??"

Not Elm St.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

He said....What??

Southern Cathy: I can't believe you didn't filet that guy for saying that. I have never seen you so calm when someone is rude to you; are you on new happy pills or something?
Me: Hmm, what? I was taking his blood pressure, I didn't hear a thing. OK, what was it he said then?
Southern Cathy: (turning pale) I, umm... well, what I mean to say is.....well....he said....
Me: Spit it out!
Southern Cathy: He said...."IN ANOTHER MINUTE I'LL BE MAKING LOVE WITH THIS NICE NURSE"! Sorry! I though you heard it, jeesh, if I'd known you hadn't I never would have mentioned it!
Me: Cath, he's 80 fucking years old; at most he would get an over-the-top-of-the-glasses stare. Get a grip.