Tuesday, August 29, 2006

A Flock Without Their Fooked-Up Shepherd

I have fairly strong views on polygamy. I don't know why. The practice long-abandoned by the mainstream LDS church, still in practice today by small fundamentalist groups in little pockets of the country. "Fundies" as we like to refer to them. They call themselves Mormons, but I'd like to think of them more as that annoying asshole second-cousin-twice-removed who does more to tarnish the family name, than do anything to contribute.

That, and he's a child molester that has eluded the law so much, you can't help but wonder if anyone is really looking for him.

Okay, so I really have issues with child molesters. Maybe that is why I hate polygamists so much. I'm not saying all polygamists are child molesters, but what kind of sick 50-something year old bastard takes a 13 year old for his 12th wife? This is not sacred. This is pedophilia masked as divine right. The same mentality terrorists use to justify killing innocent people.

Because God wants them to.


So, imagine my extreme pleasure to see that Warren Jeffs was captured in Nevada on some menial traffic stop. Besides being one sick asshat, he also is proven to be the World's Biggest Hypocrite. Many members of his flock live in poverty. That asshole was caught in a 2007 Cadillac Escalade, numerous cell phones, laptops and over $50,000 in cash. Somehow, I don't think Jeffs was suffering through life on the run eating Top Ramen and Hamburger Helper.

If I had my way, this dipshit wouldn't ever see the light of day again, plus have his testicles gnawed off by hamsters...but unfortunately, I don't always get it my way. However, I can only hope he is put away for the rest of his life. Because he was pretty much the sole power of the church (the only one "ordained" to perform marriages, the only decision-maker of the church, etc.), one can only hope that the Fundies sect will sort of crumble like a house of cards. It doesn't sound like Jeffs had a plan of succession in place.

I hope that State Trooper who caught him gets special recognition. Hell, he at least deserves the reward. What a charge that must be...to be responsible for the capture of one of the FBI's Most Wanted.

That's what I call a good day at work.

Early Morning Blather

It's 5:30AM, and I am awake, and showered. I've been awake since around 4am. Lucky for me, I have some work-related training to go to this morning...to learn how to be a good mentor and stuff for new hires/grads. If you ask me, I don't think it's a good idea to give me a new grad to train. I would probably scare them right out of the nursing profession. But hey, I get 8 CEU's for going to this class. And I get paid for it. Which means come Saturday, I will be in overtime.

Last night, the neighborhood was filled with the lights and sirens of 4 fire trucks. Virile firemen in full gear charged into the building across the street. I didn't see any smoke or fire, neither did the other 100 people who stepped outside to watch. After 10 minutes of trying to figure out if I needed to move my car, I got bored and went back inside to read more news.

(On a side note: I had a feeling that Karr guy didn't do it. Sure, he looks creepy in a Chester Molester kind of way, but something just didn't feel right. Meh, he probably did something really naughty in Asia and needed a quick escape back to U.S. before anyone found out. Claiming to be the culprit of a high-profile cold case would be a fairly efficient way of getting that accomplished.)

My stepdad called me last night. I feel guilty because I never call him and I should. Whenever I talk to him, he bears no grudge towards me and my brothers, and he hopes we don't hold any bitter feelings towards him. He is a good man, and all I want for him is to be happy. At any rate, he called because he was called and asked why my mother's Jeep would be impounded. I suggested repo, but she's been making her payments. Baffled, I still wonder what is amiss, especially since I haven't been able to reach her at home or on her cell. Vehicles can be impounded for 597,000 reasons...and none of them good. So, I will try to call her today during breaks and such while I am at my class. It does make me wonder what has happened. I did talk to her Friday, and she never indicated something was wrong...unless she got pulled over for something Monday and hauled off to the clink.

I don't know how you normal day-shift working folks manage to get up this early on a regular basis. Lots of coffee? Do you go to bed at 7pm? Turbo-charged Wheaties breakfast? This is horrible. I suspect I will go have a toaster pastry and finish getting ready for my day.

It's going to be a long day.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Nurse Follies: Getting In to Nursing School

I checked the mail yesterday in my pajamas. Since most of my pajamas already look like scrubs, and vice versa, I don't feel too self-conscious about going out in them. Anyway, I went to check my mail yesterday morning with Sam in tow. A band of Merry Mexicans were hacking and pounding away on my building, taking off the old shingles and putting on new ones.

I'm sure Bloated Single Mom was really pleased about that. It went on for 2 days straight for the entire time there was daylight.

In my mail, I got a couple letters from my alma mater. One was for some sort of alumni banquet that I won't even go to. The other was from the nursing department. Curious, I opened to see what it was.

Apparently, there is some sort of glitch in their computer because it thinks I am still trying to apply to get into nursing school. It outlined that there are over 3000 applicants, and they only take 130-160 students per year depending on how many teachers they have to actually teach them (which is the honest to God reason why there is a nursing shortage...schools just aren't staffed to crank them out fast enough).

The letter went on to blather about how the Nurse Entrance Test will only be given this academic year to those who submitted for eligibility by an April date of this year. Yikes! I can almost hear the screaming of pissed off people who are going to have to wait at least all of 2007 until they take the NET and might not even get to take it until 2008.

Thank goodness I don't have to go through all that circus-hoop jumping anymore. Just even thinking about that whole process of getting accepted into the nursing program, and going to nursing school itself was enough to cause me to break out into hives. I was itching for the remainder of the day.

Nursing school = some form of punishment for something awful I did in a previous life.

At least when I bridge to a BSN, most of it will be online classes. Maybe someday, I can go back and teach in a nursing program. It would be something to do during the week. Or maybe when I am old and can't stomach being a floor nurse anymore. Maybe I can be referred to as one of those old dinosaur nurses who "just don't know what it's like in the real world". Nah, I'd just be an asshole.

The new chair of the nursing program is one of my old clinical instructors. She's an awesome lady, but I remember her most for barfing bad Chinese on another student during clinicals. Everyone got to go home early that day. Hee!

Ahh...the memories. It almost makes me sad I wasn't blogging during nursing school. There were some fun stories.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Vacation Stowaway?

I just read over on the Channel 9 webpage (so I can only assume it actually aired), that a Raytown girl went to Florida for vacation, picked up some shells on the beach, came home, and discovered one of the shells had a hermit crab in it.

Why is this news? Why would a station waste their time covering this story?? I mean, people come back from vacation with crabs all the time.

Kind of hard to pass yourself off as a serious, hard-hitting news network when you run with fluff like this. Sam took a colossal crap in the middle of Petsmart the other night. Where was Larry Moore then???

Monday, August 21, 2006

Apartment Hate: Redux

Did I mention how much I hate apartment life?

Tonight, I cleaned the kitchen, loaded the dishwasher, was all proud of my accomplishment, then settled on the couch to watch a movie. Maybe about 30 minutes into it, I paused for a run to refresh my icy cold Dr. Pepper. Lo and behold, both my kitchen sinks were filled with nasty looking gray water.

I turned on the garbage disposal, the water drains from sink A, and back flows into sink B. I turn off the disposal, and water returns to sink A. I grab the plunger and have a go with it. It only succeeds in churning up disgusting bits of unidentifiable junk. I stop and study the situation, mind brainstorming possible solutions.

I heard the hum of my next door neighbor's garbage disposal being switched on and watched in horror as the water in my sinks increased to the point it was ready to crest and flood the kitchen floor. I panicked and paged the after-hours maintenance man. Fifteen minutes go by before he calls back. Good thing it wasn't an emergency or anything.

After a brief rundown of my problem, Happy Helperton comes over with a plunger in hand, and a white bottle. He pours contents of said white bottle down sink B. It stinks something awful. I peer at the bottle: pure sulfuric acid. Soon, the entire apartment smells like Hell. Literal Hell. I spray some air freshener, which only succeeds on making my apartment smell like Satan's Grandma's house.

The sulfuric acid followed by vigorous plunging is no success. Happy decides he is in way over his head and calls someone else, who comes over to inspect the sink, and then he calls someone else. Among the three of them, none of them sound like an actual plumber.

At least I am not alone in my misery. The neighbor's sink is doing exactly the same thing.

So now it is almost 11:00pm, and I have a parade of smelly guys darting between my apartment, the neighbor's apartment, and the basement to try to figure out what's going on because no one can seem to figure it out. With all these strange people roaming about, Sam is going apeshit. However, he is wearing the bark collar (so we don't disrupt the baby), so all he can do is pantomime. He forgot about the collar, barked a couple times, got zapped, and went and hid under the bed for 15 minutes.

I hadn't really planned on cleaning my carpets this evening, but with all the activity that is going on, no one in this building is going to get any sleep tonight. So, I may as well brandish the Hoover and start some microwave popcorn.

It's going to be a long, long night.

Apartments suck ass.

For those of you who are not new to this blog, I hate apartment living. I loathe it. I despise it. The only thing worse than apartment living...is...well, I don't know what is worse than apartment living.

So, I am really looking forward to having my own house...which will be before the end of the year.

My apartment has met it's expectations...which were very little. All I needed was a place, relatively inexpensive, to keep me warm and dry until I finished college and established myself in my new career. Now that has been accomplished, the apartment has served it's purpose, it's time to move on to greener pastures.

For those of you who are also not new to this blog, you know I have a dog. An American Eskimo named Sam. Sam, while cute, has an annoying bark. I don't want to hear his bark when I am at home, so he wears a bark collar. When I am working, he is without the bark collar. If someone comes snooping around, I want Sam to bark himself senseless. Sam is my theft deterrant. No one has broken into my apartment, so I can guess that he's doing his job.

Funny about the nature of dogs...they bark. So, imagine my complete shock and amazement that my heavy-footed fat neighbor lady who lives upstairs came down first thing this morning to tell me that Sam barks.

"I have a 6-month old baby," she whined, "And your dog barks and wakes the baby and I can't have that."

I waved my hand to dismiss her, muttering something about putting the bark collar on him. I don't know if she expected me to kiss her ass because she just stood there...all bloated, fully dressed, no bra, eye-liner smeared down her faced...looking as though she just did her Walk of Shame.

I can't help feeling bitchy...I just came off of 12 hours of arguing with a patient who insisted she paid my salary, and therefore was entitled to me waiting on her hand and foot. (Subsequently, I told her she wasn't in a hotel, and she could never afford my salary.) Besides, I'm usually an even bigger asshole when I lack sleep.

But I digress.

I sent Single-Mom on her way with assurances that I would put Sam's bark collar on him. I know she has called the management to complain about Sam in the past, I've been in their office when she made the call. Management and myself just rolled our eyes in unison. Dogs bark, and not every owner has a bark collar. If you can't deal with noises from your neighbors, maybe apartment dwelling isn't for you.

She's really going to come unglued when I shampoo my carpets tonight...around 1am. I work nights...my schedule is reverse of what normal people do, which is why I do my grocery shopping at 2am. Let her call the cops. They love the nurse. They might even help me move the couch.

It would be even better if I had a boyfriend/husband (but then if I was married, we wouldn't be renting) then we could have REAL LOUD sex every night. Then if she complained, I could always say that I'm trying to have a baby of my own that I can keep awake with my dog's barking.

I've observed an influx of the Single Mothers in my apartment complex lately. A set of them live right next door to me, Bloated Single Mom lives upstairs. It almost makes me miss the Alcoholics who used to live upstairs before her. At least when they walked around, it didn't sound like my ceiling was going to cave in.

I hate apartment living. When I buy a house, I'm going to have a ginormous housewarming party to celebrate my liberation from apartment dwelling, particularly from this apartment complex.

And everyone is invited...with the exception of Bloated Single Mom. All the noise might wake the baby.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Celebrity Deathmatch: The Nursing Edition

Welcome, ladies and gents, to the first ever Celebrity Deathmatch: Nursing Edition. Okay, so neither contestant is a celebrity, and only of them is a nurse...but why be bothered with trivial details when today's match promises to be a harrowing, nail-biting experience.

And on with the show!

In this corner, standing a robust 5'2", but wearing clogs that add 2 more inches to an already intimidating height. Short blonde hair, and hot pink scrubs...is the voluptuous, the sarcastic, with the ability to bring quivering Respiratory Therapists to their knees: Heather the RN! (wild applause)

And in this corner, towering at 6'4", weighing in...well, we don't know the weight because he broke the scale, a patient who is no stranger to psych meds, who boasts the ability to seduce unsuspecting females with his sheer manliness, presenting: Chester the Molester! (boos from the audience)

Both contestants take their place in the ring. Heather on one side of the desk, Chester on the other. Before the match begins, we had the opportunity to talk to them both to find out just who will win this match, and why.

CDM: Heather, why do you think you will win this match?
Heather: Because I have a high IQ, razor wit, and quick access to hospital security.
CDM: Chester is 3 times your size. Aren't you worried he will squish you?
Heather: No...because I can always outrun him. I can toss some cookies from the galley at him and distract him while I run away to the safety of the Med Room.
CDM: An excellent strategy, indeed!

CDM: And you, Chester, why do you think you will win tonight's match?
Chester: I will use my secret weapon.
CDM: And what would that be?
Chester: I will flash my penis at Heather and she will become so enamored, that she will surrender herself to me and my wills.
CDM: What makes your penis so special?
Chester: It is magical. Why today, two nursing students saw it and they were so intimidated by it, they never came back to my room.

There you have it folks. Two opposing forces at work. Who will come out the victor?


Round One:
Heather sits at the desk across from Chester's room. She appears to be charting on her other patients. Chester comes out of his room and approaches Heather. He is wearing a hospital gown and clutching a sock.

Chester: I have a question.
Heather: What is it?
Chester: Well, I have a friend coming over tonight, and we plan on having sex. So, what is your policy on that.
Heather: Would this be related to the escort services you were calling all day today?
(Wow! A quick sucker-punch from Heather. That short girl sure is sneaky!)
Chester: We don't want to be bothered. So, can you not come in the room because we are having sex?
Heather: This is a hospital, Chester, not a hotel. It's midnight and you need to go back to your room because you are disrupting the other patients.

Heather 1, Chester 0

Chester turns around and drops the sock. He bends over to pick up the sock and the gown parts to reveal a very large, very dimpled ass. Heather throws up in her mouth a little and vows never to eat cottage cheese ever again.

Heather 1, Chester 1

Round 2:
Heather is sitting at the computer entering orders. Chester comes out of his room, pushing his IV pole, still wearing his gown. He meanders down the hall, exposing his ass to the rest of the staff, and offers to show his penis to anyone who asks to see it. Charge nurse appears and orders Chester back to his room. The staff is nauseated. Heather glares at Chester when he smugly returns to his room.

Heather 1, Chester 2

Round 3:
Chester calls from his room announcing that he has pissed all over himself and he needs the tech to personally give him a spongebath. Heather and staff tell him there is nothing wrong with his hands and he is fully capable of giving himself a shower. Chester goes off to the shower, but not before inviting one of the nursing assistants to come and take a shower with him. The staff all tell him no. Heather is still glaring at Chester.

Heather 1, Chester 2, Staff 1

Round 4:
It's morning, and the day staff is in. An Asian nurse is getting report from Heather and appears to have taken his place in this match: a tag-team partner! Chester, not to be ignored, comes out of his room stark-ass-naked. This atrocity is witnessed by Heather, Asian-nurse, 2 residents, and 1 other nurse. The horror is collective.

Heather/Staff 2, Chester 3

"My gown is too big" Chester complains while absently playing with his nipple. In unison, Heather and Asian-nurse demand he return to his room. Heather also barks that he needs to shut his curtain because no one wants to his his naked butt. First year resident turns green.

Heather/Staff 3, Chester 3, Resident -1

Chester comes out of room 5 minutes later with a sheet wrapped around his waist, only the sheet doesn't fully wrap around, and there is an opening right in the front, strategically showcasing his wiener. All the residents retreat.

Heather/Staff 3, Chester 4, Residents -5

Heather stands up and points a finger at Chester and yells, "Get back to you room and cover yourself! If you come out of your room one more time, I will have the police come up here and they will deal with you personally!!"

Chester beats a hasty retreat to his room and closes the door. If one thing trumps his penis, it would be police with tasers.

Heather/Staff 4, Chester 4

Heather and staff ask his primary doctor for discharge orders and get it. Chester will be going home!

Heather/Staff 5, Chester 4

And Heather wins in a come-from-behind victory!! We tried to get a post-match interview with her, but she grumbled something about going home and jabbing sharpened pencils in her eyes before going to bed.

So, tune in next time for Celebrity Deathmatch where we will pit Paris Hilton against the entire medical encyclopedia of sexually transmitted diseases!!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

My Dental Excursion

Today, I went to the dentist to get my teeth cleaned. Now, when I go to get stuff like that done, I just like to lay in the chair, and not talk. Besides, it's hard to talk when you have someone's hands crammed in your mouth, but even so, I just like the silence. I don't care much for idle chit-chat just to pass the time. Same goes for when I get my nails done. I'll talk during hair appointments because Amy usually has something interesting to share. Amy is the only one who has permission to blather. Everyone else can shut their cakehole.

Imagine my disappointment when I got Chatty Kathy as my dental hygienist.

She directed me to my chair. I get the obligatory "how's your summer?" segway, and off she goes. I didn't have to do much talking, she more than covered enough ground for everyone else in the office.

In the hour I was there, there are things I learned...

(Read the following loudly, as fast as you can talk, avoid breathing if possible.)

She's married and has no kids and isn't sure if she wants kids and by the way, she has been super busy because school is starting because all the parents waited until the last minute to bring them in and sometimes they bring in 4-5 kids at one time and their waiting room while not small isn't very big so imagine a medium-sized waiting room full of kids and she just didn't know what she was going to do with all these kids because it was insane. By the way, are you going on vacation? (intelligible response from me) Yeah, she's going camping this weekend with her husband because they like to camp and do it all the time, but prefer to do it in the spring and fall when it is not too hot and this weekend his mother in law is coming along but she really thinks her mother in law is weird so she was able to get out of camping Friday night and only camp Saturday and Sunday. Her husband doesn't like to travel, so she is going to do travel alone because she wants to travel and see the world but her husband doesn't and she knew that when she married him and she figured she would have to find her own travel buddy and by the way, her boss is taking the entire office to Vegas in October for a dental conference and she has never been to Vegas but how often does your boss take you to Vegas and she was doing a really good job saving up for it and her husband is not very happy she is going to abandon him for the weekend because he has been complaining more about it as of late but she really isn't into gambling because if she were, she could do it here in town but instead she is going to spend a lot of time at the pool reading a book because she likes to read and did she mention that her dad bought a timeshare in Hawaii, but not on the main island, but rather on the one that is all lush and tropical and she thought it was the Garden Island and she can't believe her dad bought a timeshare because that wasn't his nature, sure he would go listen to the sale's pitch for the timeshares to get a free meal or something but she couldn't believe that her dad actually paid money for the timeshare but she thought that maybe his new wife had something to do with it and isn't it strange what a new spouse can make someone do? (unintelligible response from me) Can you believe how fast the summer has gone by? She couldn't, but she had two nieces who were starting school and one was starting high school and she was TOTALLY freaking out that everyone else in high school was going to be taller, older, thinner and better looking and what if she couldn't remember the combination on her locker and she couldn't get into the locker and get her books because she needed to make good grades because her aunt bribed for good grades and they go to school in quarters and not semesters but there was one quarter where they didn't get to go shopping because someone had a C in math but they were able to go the next quarter because that C was brought up to a B- and their mother doesn't care about her good their grades are, so she has to bribe them because education is important and she takes them out shopping and when you get these two girls together, they just talk nonstop and you can't ever get a word in edgewise...can you imagine?

I can't imagine. I can't imagine how she managed to get through all that without taking one single breath.

(On a side note, I would like to point out how incredibly painful it was to write that paragraph and not use correct grammar and punctuation. Spellcheck is going to go apeshit when I run it.)

After the cleaning and my ears being talked off, Mr. Dentist comes to inspect the handiwork and they send me on my way, but not before giving me my free toothbrush, toothpaste, and dental floss. I got the ugliest toothbrush ever, but you can't be picky when it's free. I now have a gazillion things of dental floss because I buy a certain kind. So, I'm going to have to figure out how to get rid of all this floss. I wonder if I took it to work and put it with a bowel with a sign that said "free"...if anyone would help themselves.

I'm so incredibly tired now, so I am going to go to bed. I have no pressing engagements, so I should be able to sleep in. I can't wait!

Monday, August 14, 2006

Tomato Season Officially Open!

I stopped by the local farmer's market Saturday morning on my way home from work. I was somewhat taken aback by the sheer number of people there. Fortunately, I drive a PT Cruiser, and therefore can fit into small parking spaces where beady-eyed soccer moms in big SUVs can't go. Bwahahahaha!

To my delight, almost every single vendor had home grown tomatoes in varying size, shape, color, and price. The vendors who were peddling beer bread mix, fudge, preservatives and baked goods could only stand and wish they had tomatoes to sell.

The Tomato Gestapo was even there, eyeballing all the tables, mentally deciding if they were indeed homegrown. Judging. Silently cursing those whose tomatoes didn't meet his high expectations for the red fruit.

Yes, tomatoes are fruit.

I bought a big bag of big red tomatoes, thoughts of the World Famous Kieffer Fresh Garden Salsa dancing in my head. I bought little orange tomatoes. I also felt sorry for the tomato-less vendors and purchased a very large squash, and somewhat smaller melon.

I thought about the 21 tomato plants Paul and I planted back in April, and how it hasn't exactly produced us a bumper crop...then became depressed. Paul is baffled because he always gets good results, so I have come to the conclusion that it's just me. I can't grow tomatoes worth shit...even in someone else's yard. I simply wasn't blessed with a green thumb, and the only thing I can grow proficiently is a pile of dirty laundry.

I'm just going to toss in the garden trowel and plan on buying my tomatoes from Mennonites for the remainder of my days

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Would Jesus Wear a Rolex On His Television Show?

Ever since I finished high school, I have worked night shift. So, I am accustomed to being awake at all hours of the night. That being said, I do pity the patients who can't sleep at night, if only for the fact that television programming after hours leaves a lot to be desired. You have your choice between the "Get Rich With Real Estate" infomercial as hosted by two midget twin brothers in matching suits, various other infomercials claiming to help you drop 50lbs in 1 week, music videos, the Feed the Children commercials in which Sally Struthers threatens to eat the impoverished unless you send in enough money to buy one cup of coffee a day, and most importantly, the early morning televangelists.

Televangelism is sort of like stumbling upon a fishing show. You stop, you stare, you drool on yourself, and you cannot find the strength to change the channel. Back in the 90's, with the fall of the PTL and Tammy Faye's makeup budget, one would think that televangelism would fade into obscurity. Sadly, it didn't.

A lot of times, I catch patients watching this stuff. I'm continually surprised at the lengths some of these televangelists will go to get your dollar. One guy claims that if you contribute to his mortgage, I mean, ministry, God will miraculously deposit millions into your bank account. He even has "followers" who attest that such a miracle occurred. Another guy is soliciting for funds to feed the starving Jewish people in Israel, and if we do so, God will bless us for blessing his children and so on and so forth. On one show, the guy told a woman who was essentially homeless, that she still needed to give because that is what God wanted her to. If I believed what they told me, God would want me to give thousands because I will get a monetary return on my investment, because God wants us to have riches, and Satan wants everyone to be poor. It says so in the Bible!

Actually, I'm pretty confident that the "riches" spoken about in scriptures doesn't involve money.

And don't pay attention to the preacher's wife (who is usually half his age, and not his first wife), who is standing next to him, either crying or wailing out a song (sometimes, it's difficult to discern between the two), covered in diamonds and gold, and their three poodles sitting at their feet.

I know the scriptures warn of false prophets, but I always figured they would be a little more subtle that that.

As long as people keep sending them money, they will continue to siphon off those individuals who buy into it. Out there, I'm sure there is more than one person who has been driven to bankruptcy by televangelist ministries. While it may be easy to look at those people and call them gullible idiots, it's just plain sad.

Yes, there is a special place in hell for televangelists. Right there next to the lawyers...and that evil surgical resident whom I loathe.

There should be laws banning such shows from hospitals. We give these patients powerful drugs, and they might actually be compelled to call and give their credit card numbers while in an altered state. One of my patients already did. Apparently, she gets a calendar for every dollar she sends. She has a lot of calendars.

I have an uncle who used to get drunk on Sundays (well, he got drunk everyday) and watch Jerry Fallwell. He never sent money (because that's money that could be used to buy more beer), but he was inspired to dress in drag and go parading down in the town square in front of the Catholic church.

Silly Nazarenes.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

The Beginnings of a Not-Good Weekend

Okay, so the fact that it is a weekend, and that I have to go to work, is a strong indicator that it's not going to be a good weekend. Staffing is horrible, morale is at an all time low. Nurses are leaving in droves: to other places, to other adventures. The Bosshole, in all the infinite wisdom, didn't forsee the shortage and hire more help. Now, we are at time of the year where no help is to be hired. New Grads are nestling into their new jobs and have yet to reach the point where they are ready to fly the coop because nursing isn't all hearts and flowers. More seasoned nurses are not leaving because they secretly think the New Grads are after their jobs.

Well, I don't really know about that last part. I mean, any New Grad is more than welcome to my job...but I don't know why they would want it.

At this point, I don't know where I could work at that will make me happy. So, I will just stay on my floor and be miserable...and bitch about it a lot. My only consolation is that I am not alone in my sentiments.

Thursday was a good day. I went out on another "outing" and got to see Superman Returns (great movie!). I got homemade cookies that I didn't have to make myself (they were awesome!), and I got to be privvy to a secret that no one else in the world knows about. (Don't ask, because I'm not talking!) But I do still giggle about it...

Friday, I slept in...or tried to. My computer is on the blink and I fear I am going to have to take it in and pay a nerd to look at it. The CPU usage shot up to 100% (not normal for my computer), I can't get anything to open because it seems every program is runnning (and I can't get it to stop). I ran a full virus scan and turned up nothing. I'm very sad that my computer now sucks, and I fear I'm going to have to shell out a buttload of money for either costly upgrades, or a whole new tower.

My alarm clock went off this afternoon, and I hit the snooze button with such force, it obliterated it. So, in the morning, I have to go to Wally-World and pick up another alarm clock I can try to destroy.

How much longer until I go on vacation?? I need a break.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Women are Strange

In my 30-some years of being a female, I've yet to understand them fully. Just because you come equipped with a uterus, doesn't mean you are passed the inherent knowledge of what makes women tick. Oh sure, I know why we need to travel to the bathroom in packs, or why the word "nothing" means "I'm upset and I am even more upset because you don't know I am upset, and it upsets me that you have no clue as to even why I am upset in the first place".

Besides, it's not really for me to understand how women function. That's the challenge for men. I just try to focus on my own stuff. My own stuff keeps me more than occupied. I think as long as I understand myself, I am more than content with life. It's when you try to toss everyone else in there, things become fooked up.

That being said...sometimes, I just don't understand women. Case in point:

My mother has a best friend. She is loud. She smokes worse than the Jackstack. She's loud. She thinks the price of gas is directly related to the time the fuel truck gets there, because the fresher the gas, the higher the price. She's loud. She thinks Saturns are the best cars on the market because she drives one. Did I mention she is loud?

She's been in more failed relationships than Elizabeth Taylor. Her latest and greatest, a raging alcoholic who routinely cheats on her with his ex-wife. She's caught him cheating. He's admitted to it. Also, the only thing he is more often than drunk, is unemployed. He's also butt-ass ugly, and has the IQ of a taco.

A fine catch by any woman's standards.

They are also getting married next month.

Words fail me when I try to understand why a woman would want to marry a guy like this. What makes someone like this so attractive to the opposite sex? The blood-shot eyes, the jaundiced skin, the skeletal frame with paunchy little beergut with it's oversized, cirrhosed liver?

I get all hot just thinking about it.

Damn me and my standards for a full set of teeth, good hygiene, steady job, educated, no past criminal history, no substance abuse problems, no violent past. If only I could be lax in any of these things, I too could be shackled by the bonds of matrimony to a man who routinely puts me into the hospital with a broken bone or two. Or who will sleep with anything that has a hole...and bring home the STD's to share with me. Or someone who doesn't work, but sits at home and sponges off my income.

Which also begs the question: where does a woman go to meet such a guy? The laudromat? Couseling? Parole office? Visiting day at the local prison??

The only explanation I can think of as to why some women gravitate towards loser men is the "My Love Can Fix You" power that some women think they have. I don't have this power. I used to, until the day I discovered it's as real as the toothfairy. Then, I traded up to the power that reduces people to quivering masses of tears with one glare, which I think is a much better power.

The "My Love Can Fix You" power doesn't exist. Ladies, if the guy is a shithead when you meet him, chances are pretty good that he's going to remain a shithead until the day he dies, and even the Golden Poon of Virtue (that you may or may not have) isn't going to change that.

There are good guys out there, and there is no need to settle for some jackass who thinks monogamy is some type of wood.

I've said it before, and I will say it again...there are worse things out there than being single. Being married to an asshat is one of them.

While I probably won't be going to the much celebrated nuptials of my mother's friend (thank God for working weekends), I may send a card...with the name of a good divorce lawyer inside.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Surf and Turf

Last night, Paul and I went on another outing. The original plan was to go to Nebraska Furniture Mart and help Paul buy a computer because his current computer runs on Windows 98, and is roughly comparable to what I used to use in the 3rd grade. At any rate, they had a killer sale on one particular computer that I thought would fit his needs perfectly (email and light web browsing...no downloading, no midget porn).

Halfway there from my house, he calls my cell (halfway from his house) to tell me that he called NFM and they were out of the computer, and they didn't do rainchecks. Bastards. They probably only had 4 sale computers to start with. That's how they get you. You go in to buy one thing, they tell you they are out of the one thing, tell you that the one thing really was a piece of crap anyway, then tell you that for $1000 more, you could have this much better thing.

Whatever, Nebraska Furniture Mart salespeople! I'm onto your little game. I don't even care if the salesguy looked like Al Roker (pre-gastric bypass).

So, instead of going to NFM, it was decided to just go have dinner. Where to go? This question that can be the source of contention to any relationship: family, friends, outings. It is probably one of the most repeated conversations we have whenever we go out to eat.

Paul: Where do you want to go?
Me: I don't care. Is there a particular place you have in mind?
Paul: No, I don't care. You pick.
Me: I picked last time. You pick.
Paul: I don't want to pick.
Me: I defer to you to make an executive decision.
Paul: No.
Me: Fine. We'll go to (insert name of restaurant).
Paul: (heavy sigh)
Me: You don't want to go there?
Paul: Well...I did eat there the other day.
Me: Then where would you like to go.
Paul: I don't care.

This conversation runs itself into the ground and I finally decide on Cheeseburger in Paradise. It's the closest I can get to the Caribbean until next February, plus I've never been there before.

So, we go there and get a booth. The overall appearance the restaurant was pretty handy...like a big surf shack. The bar log of the restaurant was bigger than the menu, and they make fun little fruit critters to adorn your drink. I settle on a very delicious Peach Mango Mohito, but it didn't come with a fruit critter. I should have asked for one. Paul doesn't partake of the adult beverages as he is on call that night until 10pm, but he eyes my drink for the remainder of the evening.

Meanwhile, a family with a small child is leaving. Upset about something, the child throws her big sippy cup on the ground (concrete). It pops open, sloshing it's entire contents of chocolate milk onto the the occupants of the two tables that were in the direct line of fire. Paul and I immediately discussed how we were never taken anywhere public as children, and probably for the very reason we just witnessed. We also get on the subject of vacations and how similiar our childhood experiences are. For financially low-profile families such as ours, vacation usually amounted to a road trip that landed you at some aunt and uncle's house for a week. He was lucky, his relatives had a swimming pool. My relatives had a farm, and a big horse tank we had to scrub out before we could use it to swim in.

Ever notice how when you are in the company of others like you, you get into these discussions about who was more poor and destitute? No? Well, hooray for you. You can skip this paragraph. Paul and I get into the "my family was poorer than yours" contest. I win because my dad took the money I saved for pom-pon camp and bought beer. I was the only girl on the squad with a part-time job who had to finance summer camp.

We ordered our food. He ordered some strange-looking chicken sandwich. I ordered the signature Cheeseburger in Paradise while the song is playing in my head. (If you are a Caribbean hound, it's mandatory you know Jimmy Buffet...so shut it.)

The food, while good, wasn't what I would call the best I have ever had. However, during dinner, I managed to drop a small piece of beef down my shirt. I peeked down the front and saw it sitting there, nestled between my boobs...which gives an entirely new meaning to Cheeseburger in Paradise. Paul laughs and almost snorts water out of his nose. I'm annoyed because this always seems to happen to me.

I have a bra that is structured in such a manner that I cannot merely stick my fingers in and pluck it out lest I come off looking like I am about ready to pull a rabbit out of my cleavage.

It would have been too simple to make a run to the bathroom to fish out the R-rated beef, so I just sit in the booth and try to shift things around in hopes it falls out of the bottom of the bra and down my shirt. No such luck. This is a special bra that won't allow it to happen, plus the beef seems to have grown comfortable in it's new environment.

So, for the remainder of dinner, and a dessert of chocolate nachos that smell and taste like Krispy Kreme donuts, I sit with beef in my bosom. Paul wants to know what I am going to do about the burger (because he appears too interested in the well-being of it), and I just tell him I'm saving it for later. It wasn't until I get up to leave, that I am able to successfully shift the meat out without drawing attention to myself.

Crisis averted.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Nurse Follies: Heather's First Code

Another weekend, another peptic ulcer.

Saturday night was busy, Sunday night the Hellmouth opened. I knew it would someday, I just didn't think that I would be the welcoming committee.

The shift started innocently enough. I saw my first patient. A very nice lady, did my assessment, briefly charted, moved on to the next room. I had these same patients the night before, so I was pretty familiar with them.

Moved on to the next patient. A little sicker than my other ones, but not critically. He liked his meds with chocolate pudding, so I grabbed a pudding cup out of the fridge, and breezed into the room. There was an aide in there. Her job (other than holding a chair down) was to make certain the patient didn't climb out of bed.

The patient looked different to me than the previous night. For one thing, he wasn't responsive. I stuck my head out the door to have the on-call resident paged. The charge nurse perked up, hearing the apprehension in my voice, and asked me what was wrong.

"Something is not right." I replied and ducked back into the room. Charge Nurse followed. A respiratory therapist (not Paul) followed us into the room.

From there, everything snowballed. We watched the oxygen numbers on the patient monitor start to decline. 91...88...81...76.

"Call a Rapid Response!" the Charge Nurse and myself cry out in unison.

Then we see the heart monitor numbers start to drop...very fast. 68...57...45...25...0. Asystole. The monitor starts flashing, beeping and generally going apeshit. At this time, so does the staff.

"Call a Code!!" Charge Nurse and I again cry out in unison. I start throwing blankets off the patient and into the corner. Charge nurse and RT are also doing things. A couple nurses plow into the room with the crash cart, almost taking out the aide, who is standing in the doorway, her eyes as big as paper plates. We've got a full blown code!! We get things in order and proceed...patches, ambu-bag, compressions. The Code Team arrives minutes later.

I have to tell you...what might have been a few minutes, seemed like an eternity. All the nurses on my floor are trained in Advanced Cardiac Life Support. In the event of an emergency, we could technically run our own code...but that doesn't mean we want to.

See this obviously staged picture of a Code Blue? This picture is complete and absolute bullshit. In a real code situation, you would need to add about 25 more people (various nurses, residents, and a circus midget) in the room, plus about a half dozen observers out in the hall (various staff, visitors and a pony). The crash cart wouldn't look that neat and tidy after it is opened, and then you would see the nurse who was actually caring for the patient (me) in the far back of the room, jumping up and down so she can try to see what's going on.

Plus there is yelling. Lots and lots of yelling. Everyone is barking out orders and asking questions. The chart is passed around more than Paris Hilton...well...maybe not that much.

Papers, plastic, and boxes fly everywhere as the crash cart is emptied of everything we can use. After codes are done and everyone has left the room, the room looks almost identical to the Superdome after Hurricane Katrina hit.

The rest of the code passed in a blur. I think it lasted 30 minutes, maybe a little less. The patient was "brought back" and subsequently transferred to the ICU. The rest of my night passed in a blur because I was still traumatized. Code blue is never pretty. Code blue is very scary, although it shouldn't be. The patient is dead, so there is nothing you can do to harm them. Your task, however, is to reverse it.

No pressure whatsoever!!

In the two years I have been a nurse, and the many years I have worked as support staff in hospitals, I have never had one of my patients code on me. Oh sure, I've been in code situations where the patient belonged to someone else. It's different when it is your patient. I've had patients who have come close to coding, but I have never been in the situation where I have witnessed a patient actually dying before my very eyes, and then brought back to the world of the living. When I came home the next morning, all I could see was that heart monitor flatlining whenever I closed my eyes.

So, what have we learned from this? While some nurses are adrenaline junkies and thrive on such scenarious, I am not. If I want a rush, I will take up skydiving. I hate codes. I don't ever want to be part of one ever again, but with my area, it's almost a guaranteed certainty. I don't think I will ever get over the fear that grips me whenever I have to answer that call.

I don't know what ever became of the chocolate pudding cup either.