Friday, July 29, 2011

Creepy Steve

Kerry worked a very unusual evening shift with me, a painful shift since the patients trickled slowly in.  One. By. One.  Drip, drip, drip.  Like a leaky faucet.  Like I said, painful.  Plus Gil was on, which means the word was out on the street to all the drug seekers.  Dental pain, dental pain, dental pain.  Chronic back pain. One guy apparently just didn't feel like going to work and wanted a work note.  And percocet for his trouble.
Gil will give one to go, or a prescription for, like, four tabs.  Which Gil will elaborately write a script for so that it cannot possibly be altered in any way.

Feeding squirrels, I call it.  If you feed them, they will always come back.

With Mary retired, there have been a succession of xray techs.  Some better than others.  We like (and have decided to keep on our weekend) Shane.  Cute, blonde haired and blue eyed and really young. But sweet, and we will enjoy bringing her over to the Dark Side.  Unfortunately, she won't start on the weekends with New Cathy and I until September.  Until then, we have Creepy Steve.

He is really, really creepy.  He talks slowly and deliberately and  enunciates. Every. Single.  Word.  He is painful to listen to plus he is a sidler- he sidles.  He just appears.  Not there, there.  Not there, there.  I hate when people sneak up on me.  Like he's trying to catch me doing something I shouldn't be doing, or looking over my shoulder when I am looking at my email.  Creeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeepy.

And then, there is his interpretation his completed studies.  Especially the extremity films.  It is apparent he can't read xrays for shit, especially shoulders and elbows.  Most xray techs are really good at this, him not so much.  He is wrong at least 75% of the time. 

13 year old with a nothing 2 day old forearm injury; no swelling or bruising and a stupid parent who is in the department with one of her 4 idiot kids at least 3 times a month.  Gil sends him over for an xray even though it is clearly a waste of time and the taxpayers money.  Must keep up those customer satisfaction ratings.

Creepy Steve: (after sidling over next to me while I'm writing) "I'm. Pretty. Sure. This. Is. Broken. At. The. Distal. Radius"
Me: "Really?  Distal radius?  'Cause his pain was proximal especially when he wasn't playing with his phone"
Creepy Steve: "Hmm.  It. Is? It. Looks. Like. A. Buckle. Fracture. To. Me."
Me: "Ok, well Dr. Gil is reading it now.  We'll see.  If you think it is a fracture why don't you go ahead and make a disc so they won't have to wait for it".  We routinely have a disc made of the positive xrays for patients to take with them so they can convenientlybring to their orthopedic doctors.  Digital xray technology makes this possible.
Creepy Steve: "Yes.  I. Will. Do. That. Right. Now."

Predictably, there was no fracture.  But the idiot family got a nice souvenir.

Next patient is someone well known to us who "dislocates" his shoulder about once a month with ridiculous stories about how it happened.  The mechanism of injury never makes any sense.  He hoots and hollers, moans and groans and disrupts the whole place.  He usually "forgets" to stay in character and uses his arm to change position or remove his shirt. He always comes in on a Friday or Saturday. We always do an xray.  It is always negative, but his bad acting will sometimes get him narcotics.  I repeat, his xray is always negative. "I must have put it back in place".  Riiiiiight.

Creepy Steve: "This. Looks. Like. A. Posterior. Dislocation. To. Me. And. Maybe. A. Small. Clavicle. Fracture"
Me: "Oh? Gee, he complains about pain everywhere.  I touched his t shirt that was lying on the bed and kicked his backpack by accident and he screamed.  I suppose it is possible".  Unlikely, in fact I would bet a week's pay on nothing fractured, dislocated or even injured. It wasn't.  Gil gave him one Percocet and kicked him to the curb. 

Creepy Steve occasionally gets it right; he is, oddly, better with chest xrays.  In spite of his creepiness, I try to be nice to him and talk to him since I don't think he has been out of school for long. I have a strict rule not to eat the young 'uns.  The Mother Ship likes to hire people with very little experience since they don't have to pay much.  We have a lot of long-term xray techs who feel as if they will be given the boot at any minute since they scrutinize every move they make and these young techs are cheap and plentiful.  I guess his technique is good, which is a plus since there is nobody on-site to help him if he runs into trouble or has a question. 

He did ask us if we wanted anything from the pizza joint as he was ordering out for dinner.  No, but thanks for asking.  For some reason he ordered two although he was the only one eating them.

Creepy Steve: " I. Like. To. Have. Pizza. At. All. Meals. So. I. Get. Enough. To. Last. The. Week."
Oh. Pizza at EVERY meal?  Really??

I don't think Shane will want pizza at every meal.  Can't wait for her to start on our weekend.