Monday, June 30, 2008

Nurse Follies: Loosing My Nerve

This weekend was not one of my red-letter weekends. In fact, if there were a class for all new grad nurses on "Things You Shouldn't Do In An Emergency Situation", my weekend would probably be one of the cases studied.

Usually, I'm on my A-game. This whole surgery has wrecked my game...professionally, personally (don't even ask me about my fucked up sleep pattern). Now, I'm more on my D-Game. Give me a couple months, and I will be back to normal. I hope.

Anyway, Friday was a disaster if only for the fact that one of my patients was slowly circling the drain. She was one of those patients that doctors know they should be in the ICU, it's simply a matter of when they should actually send her over. Among the sickest of patients, with a disease process that has no cure, there's nothing more that can be done for her. Naturally, she's a full code.

So, I spent all night Friday on pins and needles. She looked like ass on wheat toast, and I just knew we'd be coding her before Saturday morning rolled around. I even told Smo to be ready.

My loathing of code blue situations has been well documented. Some nurses live for them. Smo is one of them. She is my polar opposite when it comes to codes. She loves them. I'd rather saw my foot off than have to actually participate in one. If I want an adrenaline rush, I'll go jump off a bridge. I know, I've seen me do it.

Miraculously enough, Sick Lady makes it through the night, and despite me begging the residents all night long to transfer her to ICU, she doesn't go over until 10am the next day. When I'm at home, medicated.

Saturday was the anti-Friday in that nothing happened, my patients slept, and I had nothing to do but clean out my work email Inbox.

Sunday, things are trucking along without a hitch, until one of my confused patients manages to get out of his restraints, and pulls out his NG tube, leaving just enough in his nose where tube feeding is trickling down his throat. Fantastic! I call the doc, get the chest x-ray and she tells me to put the NG tube back in. So, Smo is helping me with the NG placement (which I've done countless times without incident), when the patient starts gasping for air, squeaking out, "I can't breathe." His oxygen saturation starts tanking.

Now, this has happened to me before. It was my very first code, and the guy croaked before my very own eyes, in this similar fashion. His O2 levels dropped, so did his heart rate. Then, they both hit zero about the same time.

So, when I saw the screen, my mind flashed back to that fateful night. I start looking frantically around for an ambu-bag. Naturally, there isn't one in site. There's always one on the code cart, so I take off running, literally running down the hall, to the code cart. With my leg, instead of looking like a graceful sprinter, I probably looked more like the bronze medalist from the Special Olympics 50 yard dash.

I manage to attack the attention of another nurse and tech when I barrel around the corner and rip the ambu-bag off the code cart.

Me: I need some help!
Stewie: What's wrong?
Me: I don't know!! Come anyway!!

By the time I make it back to the room, I can't get the fucking ambu-bag out of the wrapping because the plastic is fused to it. So, I'm ripping at the bag like a crazed dumbass. "Chill out, Heather." Smo mutters. I think she might have poked me in the arm for emphasis. Then, I realized the patient had recovered. By this time, there's about a half dozen people in the room.

Yeah, I felt like the village idiot. I know, I completely lost my shit.

Normally, I'm pretty much cool and stuff in an emergency situation. Last night, I couldn't find my ass with two hands. By the time morning rolls around, my coworkers have found amusement with the entire event. I won't be living this one down anytime soon.

Smo is disappointed that it didn't evolve into a code because she hasn't been in one in a while and is itching for some action. She's sick like that. I like to avoid code situations altogether by preventing them from happening in the first place.

Which is the one thing that is keeping me from transferring to the ICU. They routinely have codes, and when they do, it's not like they can ship them off to a higher level of care (if they make it through the code).

Like I said, give me a couple months. I'll get back to my normal, hardass self. Perhaps I should have the Unit Educator do some drills or something so I don't jump whenever the trigger is pulled, so to speak.

I hope.


I just read that the father of the Gardner teen that died in a fight is going to stand trial for threatening some people. This bothers me on so many levels.

The guy just lost his son for something that could have been avoided. Yeah, he may have not started the fight with the deliberate intention to kill the kid, but he did run away and not bother to call for help. Show me a parent who would have reacted differently, and I will show you an uncaring bastard. I don't have kids, and yet I know that if something like this were to happen to one of my family members, the gloves come off, and I'm going to rain a shit storm on the responsible party. That's how I roll.

Kline has clinched his title of Worlds Biggest Douche bag to allow this case to even go to trial. He needs to just drop it and let this family grieve privately, rather than pour salt on an already bleeding wound.

This almost qualifies for the Ray Nagin Dumbass Award*. Oh hell...Kline, I'm sure, has a mantle full of the little bastards anyway.

It's times like this that I'm grateful I don't live in Johnson County. Kline is an embarrassment, and I really feel bad for my counterparts across the state line.

(*The Ray Nagin Dumbass Award is an award given to those in the public eye who do or say stupid things that indicate their IQ is that of a sponge.)

UPDATE: An online petition is currently seeking signatures of those who also wish for this case to be dropped. Go to this page to sign.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Thursday Blather

Today, I went to the Fifth Circle of Hell for more voluntary torture. While I was waiting for my turn to be seen, I observed various goings-on around the gym area. The gym area, mostly frequented by the senior crowd, also has a little setup with tables and chairs. Sort of like a cafe. Today, I noticed a group sitting at one table, enjoying coffee and Krispy Kreme donuts. At a gym. When finished, some of them left, others went and worked out. After eating Krispy Kreme donuts. I wonder if that gym has a defibrillator...

I also got fitted for a knee brace to wear to work. Hopefully, I will notice a difference this weekend. It's kind of a bad ass looking brace, but no one will get to see it under my scrub pants. Darn!

Tonight, I spent the majority of the evening taking cabinet doors off their frames and sanding them. All the while, texting a computer-savvy friend as to why my computer sucks...and if it needs just some upgrades, or replaced entirely.

I still haven't figured out what to do with the hinges. I'm hoping to have an epiphany while I am at work.

They kept showing trailers on the television for Dark Knight. I get excited whenever I see one, and I don't care if it's a trailer I've seen a hundred times already. This is a movie I am most excited to see. Not only do I think it's going to blow all other summer releases out of the water, I'm thinking it will turn out to be the capstone of Heath Ledger's career. Just seeing him in clips as the Joker give me goose pimples. I haven't been this excited since just before the last Harry Potter book was released. If I was a guy, I totally would be sporting a boner.

Last night, I managed to paint the drawers and frame on the island. The doors are still waiting to be painted. I started out with a brush, and then tried one of the little foam rollers. I've decided those little foam rollers rock, and I will use them to paint the rest of the cabinets. I need to look at some sort of kitchen organizing stuff so my spice cupboard doesn't look like everything was just thrown in there...because it totally has been just thrown in there.

The final part of the kitchen project will take place next week. If anyone wants to come and help, I still pay handsomely in pizza and beer.

I'm sort of blah right now. This week hasn't been that great at Casa de Heather. I got a hunch on something pretty horrible and important at the same time. I'll blog more about it later as I see if my hunch was correct. You will know it to be true by the fire in my post, not to mention a nuclear explosion coming from the general vicinity of my house.

At any rate, I'm going to turn in early tonight. I have to conserve strength for that nuclear explosion.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Are You Kidding Me?

I just read this story about a mom and her autistic kid that was kicked off the airplane. It enrages me on so many levels...

RALEIGH-DURHAM, N.C. -- A mother and her 2-year-old son were kicked off an American Eagle flight at the Raleigh-Durham airport, WTVD-TV in Raleigh-Durham, N.C., reported.
Officials said that the plane was taxiing to a runway when Jarrett Farrell began to get upset as the plane was in motion.

His mother, Janice Farrell, told WTVD-TV that she did everything she could to calm down her child but received little help from the flight crew.

Since when it is the flight crew's responsibility to help you control your child???

"If they just would have been a little more understanding, I think that none of this would have been a problem," Farrell told WTVD-TV. "He just melted down. He saw me getting upset. He was upset. He was on the floor rolling around."

Farrell said after a while, one of the pilots came back to where they were seated and gave the pair a warning.

As he should have...

When Jarrett failed to calm down after that, the pilot returned to the cockpit and turned the plane around, Farrell said.

"The pilot made an announcement that there was a woman and her child on the plane and the child is uncontrollable. And at that point, I just broke down," Farrell told WTVD-TV.

She said when they returned home to Cary, N.C., she and her husband made a decision to call American Airlines corporate office. She said a representative on the phone apologized for the incident and told her is should not have happened.

What? What shouldn't have happened? Her getting kicked off the plane or her not being able to control her child?? I'm confused. Had I been a passenger on that plane, and this behavior would have been allowed to continue for the entire flight, I would have been supremely pissed. You know, some people are nervous enough when flying anyway. Add a screaming child in there, and you have the perfect recipe for nervous breakdown by the end of the flight. No person has the kind of constitution that would enable them to survive a flight like this without needing any type of therapy after.

Look, I know I'm an asshole, but I'm not a complete moron. I understand that autistic children really can't help themselves. I understand that it takes a special kind of parent to be able to raise an autistic child. But really, if you have an autistic kid, and that kid doesn't tolerate flying...take another means of transport. Train? Bus? Drive your own damn car?

Autism aside, it really pisses me off when I am in a public place, and parents let their little snowflakes run rampant. It pisses me off even more when management of said public establishments don't put their foot down. The fact that American Airlines states that she shouldn't have been kicked off the plane tells me that I really need to avoid flying with this airline altogether. I was heading in that direction anyway when they decided to start nickel and diming me to death just to fly.

Southwest is my new bitch.

The Kitchen Project Revealed!

I know you've been waiting patiently for it. The kitchen is not completely finished, but I thought I would post pics of what has been done so far.This is the kitchen, before I moved in. Note how the countertops were a golden-rod type color laminate. At some point in history, something thought this actually looked good...which leads me to believe that people in the early 80's were colorblind. Also note the plain white tile backsplash which are also used for the insides of bathtubs and showers. Blah sink (with partially clogged valves which made for horrible water pressure). Drop in stove. Blah island.

Instead of posting all the pics I took during, I'm just going to post some after pics.New items of note: porcelain tile backsplash, Gemini range, laminate counter tops. I had originally wanted concrete countertops, but the time crunch didn't allow for it. I'm pretty happy with my choice in color, even though Mr. Recommendation wasn't certain about it at the beginning.
This is the new sink. Black granite, but it feels more like slate. It was significantly bigger than the old one. In fact, a half an inch bigger, and it wouldn't have fit. Mr. Recommendation replaced all the plumbing stuff below, so now I have water pressure. The new faucet is brushed nickel, as well as the sink drains, and that skinny thing on the left is my spout for the reverse osmosis water. Note: the small accent tiles behind the sink.This is the new and improved island. Mr. Recommendation extended it by 10-12 inches so I can have a couple stools for an eat-in breakfast bar. He used three large tiles, four smaller accent tiles (same as what is behind the sink), and then surrounded it with the beige tiles. The brackets you see below are what stabilizes the top so no one has scambled eggs in their lap. The not-quite finished product. As you can see, I've taken some of the hardware off the cabinets and am preparing to paint everything white. Right now, it's more an off white. With the red I have painted my kitchen and dining room in, it makes the off-white look even more yellow.Almost makes you want to come over for a bologna sandwhich, doesn't it? Coincidentally, Mr. Recommendation is available for hire. Email me for more info. There isn't anything that this guy can't do.

A Town Worthy of a Darwin Event

I rolled my eyes when I read about that town where a large number of teenagers got pregnant, making a pact to do so. Just when I think the pubescent demographic couldn't get anymore retarded, stuff like this happens and completely blows my mind.

So, if terrorists decided to drop a bomb on this entire town, I think they would be doing the world a favor. So many stupid pro-creators, living in one small area, is just asking for a Darwin event to help thin out the herd. Especially that one girl who got pregnant by a homeless guy. Ewww. This baby is pretty much screwed. How does one cope with the fact that you mom was a blatant whorette who slept with some homeless guy so she could get pregnant??

When I was a teenager, yes, teen pregnancy existed, but it was still considered something of a major screw-up. I don't want to say it was a "dirty little secret", but it was. The teenage moms were certainly not proud of it. They just had their babies, quietly. If they were lucky, they had supportive families and they were able to finish high school. There was no in-school daycare. Girls did not get pregnant just because they thought babies were cute and they would like have one, and having a baby shower and get free shit would be totally awesome. No, pregnancies usually happened because birth control failed or they just didn't use any.

The stigma of being an unwed pregnant teenage mother was enough to terrify me into not having sex when I was in high school. I had a great, big fear of the penis. (A fear, that I am happy to report, that I have overcome.) I think the stigma that came with being an unwed pregnant teenager was enough for most girls to take extra measures to prevent it, or just abstain from sex altogether.

I don't know when the stigma of pregnant teenagers changed. It's not a big deal anymore (of which I think is bullshit). Maybe I'm just old fashioned, but I still believe that there is something fundamentally wrong with society being okay with a 16 year old getting knocked up. Girls, lacking the maturity to care for a hamster, are getting pregnant because they think it will be fun, or it will fill some kind of void in their lives, or because some dumbass celebrity did it and it would be so cool, or for some other asinine reason.

Whenever I read about the Pregnancy Pact and the details that are emerging, I just can't wrap my mind around it. I don't even want to think about what is going to become of these babies. It's a sad story, and it makes my hope for humanity die just a little bit more.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Tuesday Blather...It Is Tuesday, Isn't It??

Today was a fun-filled day, starting out by visiting the Fifth Circle of Hell again. They isolated my knee stiffness problem to some nodules formed on my tendons, not to mention that my hamstring is completely useless right now. So, Happy Helperton of the physical therapy department, proceeds to work out those nodules. Manually. I thought I knew what pain was. I was wrong. She tried to be cheerful during the process. People should never be cheerful when purposely inflicting pain. It pisses people off and they just want to kick you in the head. Four years of nursing has taught me this valuable lesson.

From there, I go to the Pull My Knob store to inquire about hinges. I want to replace the ugly brass looking ones with white, only they don't sell my kind of hinges in white. I ask the guy what he would suggest. "Paint 'em" he says. Butthole.

From there, I go back home and eat a bologna sandwich. That's all I have time for as I get back into my car and head out to BFE, Johnson County for my one month follow-up.

My appointment was at 1:30. When I get there (on time), I find the waiting room is filled with people. All there to see one doctor, who happens to be the guy who operated on my knee. This doesn't bode well.

An hour and a half later, I am starting to see white spots, I'm so angry. Just when I'm about to go to the front desk and go postal, I'm called to the back. The nurse is all chipper and asks me how my day is going. Seriously?? I only grunt a reply. She doesn't say another word. Her intelligence belies her looks.

(Honestly, if I have an appointment, I expect to be seen within 15-30 minutes upon arriving. If you don't plan on seeing me for an hour, then make my appointment for an hour later. This is the one thing about doctors that pisses me off. They overbook. It's a travesty, and if I did my job in such a manner, someone would probably die.)

Another 30 minutes waiting in an exam room, and I finally get to see my doctor...who tells me that all the stiffness, the pain, the angst, the nodules, the crying at beer's all perfectly normal, and it could be at least 2-3 months before I will notice how well the surgery worked. He writes me an order for a brace to wear at work, and some more Percocet, and blows out of my exam room, having been in there for less than 10 minutes.

I finally get to go home. Too tired to cook, I offer to take Brother for a quick dinner at the nearby Chinese restaurant. He accepts. We go. We eat. We come home to find Mr. Recommendation and the Rocket Scientist leveling my kitchen oven so that when I bake cakes, they are not five inches on one side, and one inch on the other.

I take a two hour nap, wake up, pop some Percocet, ice the knee, and seal the grout in the kitchen. For those who have never sealed grout while on's just as boring a job as it would have been without the Percocet. You know, just in case you were wondering.

The kitchen is almost complete. Tomorrow, I shall begin painting the cabinets. It's going to be a magical experience, I'm sure.

I'll post pics soon.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Fuck You, George. RIP

George Carlin, one of the best comedians ever, has died. One of the few comedians I actually liked because he originally funny. His voice was instantly recognizable. His humor was smart.

When I was in college, I had to take a speech class. During this class, we were asked to give speeches on various things. There was this one girl, who annoyed the hell out of me. She was a wannabe hippy...didn't use soap, dressed in hemp, and all that other crap. For our comedic speeches, she chose to do hers on swear words. Basically, she just stood in front of the class and spewed "fuck" and "shit" in no context whatsoever. It just wasn't funny, and the laughter heard in the classroom was more of the embarrassed variety. Most everyone was embarrassed her speech sucked something awful. I felt bad for the Muslim girl who sat in front of me.

Number one rule of public speaking...know your audience.

I, however, was incensed. As far as I was concerned, only one person could speak solely on swear words, and it actually be funny...George Carlin. I wanted to walk to the front of the class and smack her upside the head, then take a metal comb through her dreadlocks. That would teach her for defecating on an American Icon.

So, the as the world wakes up today, it will find itself a less amusing place to live because George is gone. Prudes everywhere may breathe a sigh of relief. Today, I challenge every one of you, in honor of his memory, to drop the "f-bomb" in conversation.

Godspeed, George Carlin. Heaven just got a whole lot more interesting.

Thursday, June 19, 2008


I went to the Fifth Circle of Hell, I mean, Physical Therapy. I did the standard exercises, and continued to bitch after we were done. Physical therapists are accustomed to patients bitching. I wanted to be heard. I was pissed. How is it that it's been three weeks, and I still feel as crappy as I did before the surgery?? Absolutely no improvement.

Resigned, the therapists take a look at the offending part of my leg. After pushing on a couple spots, and being rewarded by my shrieks of pain, they deduce that I have an severely inflamed tendon. Duh! I've only been complaining about it since I set foot in your office.

So, they slapped some goo on the back of my leg and put some sort of little tool on it that emitted ultrasonic waves. For the first time in a long time, I can bend my leg, on my own, without screaming obscenities in various dead languages.

From there, I went and had lunch with my BF Trish, and was reminded why I don't have children. They are good kids, really, but I lack the capacity to understand and communicate on their level. One of which engaged in word salad. Often, I had to ask Trish to translate.

After lunch, I went to her house and they showed me their Wii...which rocks. I'm totally going to get one. Maybe later in the year, like after my vacation. Those bitches are expensive, and I still have two bathrooms to remodel. Maybe I will settle on Guitar Hero until then...

Right now, I'm waiting for the pain meds to kick in so I can go take a nap and see just how well that ultrasound thingie worked. The biggest portion of discomfort I feel is when I'm trying to sleep. Meanwhile, Brother is downstairs, cleaning and mopping up all the Hank slobber. Once in a while, I'll hear him tell Dr. Phil what a douche he is, because that is what happens to be on television.

Just another day at Casa de Heather.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


I ran out of pain pills over the weekend. At first, I thought I would be fine. I thought wrong.

At the beginning of the day, my leg would be okay. Not 100%, but definitely on the mend. I'd do my little exercises that the Devil, I mean, my physical therapist told me to do. Then, I'd run an errand or do something that required walking. By the end of the day, my knee would be stiff, and I would be miserable. When I would go to bed, my entire leg would be throbbing in agony, and I would get ZERO sleep.

Today, I called the Dr's office to get a refill. When I told the office nurse what was happening, she explained that cases like mine usually experienced pain at night because the gimpy leg hadn't figured out that it was time to unwind and rest. So, it was in constant active-mode.

This would have been useful information THREE WEEKS AGO!!

So, I now have a new bottle of pain meds, some sleeping meds to help knock my ass out at night, and a new outlook on life.

Tomorrow, is another day.

As the Canoe Turns: The Eagle Scout

My friend, Kant, wrote a post that reminded me of some of my antics back in my church singles' group days. Inspired, I felt the need to revisit, especially since the season of canoe trips has begun.

Back in the day, I was an organizing little butterfly. One of the things I liked to organize was group canoe trips. The first year I did it, we had a small handful of people (around 12 or so). The second year I did it, the number was between 25-30 people. The next year, I opened up the invite to the church singles in JoCo, and that number exceeded 50. Each year, more and more people would leave their brains at home.

Take Eagle Scout, for example. He was a third generation Eagle Scout. I know this because he reminded us ALL THE TIME. (Someone once said Eagle Scout just stood for "My Mom Did It", but I can't remember who...) To make things even more enlightening, ES served as some sort of "Canoe Counselor" for camp. Which he apparently felt made him the expert canoer on the trip. Throughout the day, he would attempt to offer canoe pointers to anyone he thought needed them, one of which resulted in Kant and her sister's canoe being wrapped around a fallen tree stump in the first turn of the float.

I'm surprised someone didn't lodge an oar up his ass, but it is important to note that by the end of the day, his canoe had tipped over more times than anyone else. And everyone hated him.

Back at camp, it's time to start the campfire. It had rained the night before, so everything was still somewhat soggy, even though it had been hot and sunny all day. Redneck Brother and myself are pretty proficient at the camping game, so we were working to start the fire. ES, in all his infinite Eagle Scout wisdom, decides we are moving too slow for his taste, and produces a can of white fuel. Despite our protests, ES proceeds to douse a generous amount of gas on a giant pile of wood, then pour a small trail leading away from said wood. By this time, everyone is pissed off at him, and we watch as he lights the beginning of the trail-o-gas. Because the nature of this gas is somewhat more volatile than regular gas you get at the pump, it's fumes are also extremely flammable. Aside from a line of fire going across the campsite, the fumes also ignite and travel up ES's legs and shorts, burning all the hair as it went. He screams like a little girl and everyone else fights the urge to breakout in thunderous applause. Disgusted, Redneck Brother takes his matches away calls him a dumbass. ES's little stunt, of which I had to explain to the campsite's owners why there was a big scorch mark on the grass, not only was dangerous, it didn't work.

Later that night, after a dinner of the standard camping fare: hot dogs, chips, beans, roasted marshmallows, ES disappears to his truck and returns with a guitar. Everyone else is looking at each other as if wondering, "What the hell?!" but because this is a group of Mormons, it's more along the lines of, "What the heck?!"

ES tries to play and lead everyone in singing church hymns, which goes over like a lead balloon. Then, he just decides to entertain us by playing and singing himself. Redneck Brother, who has had all he can stomach for one day, tells ES that if he continues to play, the guitar is going to be pitched in the campfire.

Dejected, ES adjourns to his tent. For the remainder of the weekend, he whines that no one likes him. I have no idea why that was.

From what I hear, he found a girl dense enough to marry him. Poor thing.

Dear Botoxed Prune-Faced Old Crone,

I'm fairly certain you were more than aware that you cut in line, in front of me, at the Independence Costco today. You, in your fugly orange flowered wrap around skirt and matching shirt, and enough makeup on to spackle my bathroom, just walked right in front of the strawberry blonde with the noticeable limp. You were carrying your big-assed box of four items, apparently felt that because you had less, you deserved to go before me. Or maybe it was because you thought you were dressed better. Or maybe you're just one of those people who think your better than everyone. Maybe you happen to live in Leawood.

For whatever reason, you dared not look in my general direction, probably because you could feel my Glare of Death penetrating the back of your old, wrinkled neck. Had you just looked and offered an apology, or even the lame, "I didn't notice you there" excuse, I could have let it slide. But no, you just stood there, ignoring the woman who looked very pained and annoyed because she had a severely hurting leg, and had run out of pain meds two days prior.

I almost opened up a can of verbal whoopass on you, but out of respect for my mother (who was with me) I didn't. I could had made a scathing remark about me deferring to snooty old women because their time on earth is limited and are always in a hurry, but I didn't.

I also didn't say anything because I noticed of the four items you had purchased, three of which were dog treats. (A jar of peanut butter for the weekends was noticeably absent.) I realized that all you have to go home to are your little yapping dogs named Fifi, Fluffy, Sugar Poo, and Buffy. And that you probably were married at some point, but your husband got tired of being married to a snooty sea cow and ran off with his much more attractive secretary. At least she took it up the ass.

As you literally hauled ass out of the store (probably to avoid me going postal on your wrinkled ass), my Mother looked at me and said with the sage wisdom of someone who has been on the planet longer than me, "What a bitter old bitch!"

So, have fun with your dogs. Meanwhile, I will bide my time and wait for you to come in with some botched plastic surgery or something old-people-related. Pay back's a bitch and I am RN. That's means I possess the knowledge to make you have a really bad day.

Angel of Mercy, my ass.


Monday, June 16, 2008

Good Think I'm Not Married Then!


As a 1930s wife, I am
Very Poor (Failure)

Take the test!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Thoughts On Father's Day

Through my years of reading, my vocabulary is pretty big. I'm usually the one that pulls out the five dollar words in conversation.

In the past 15 years, there is one word. The simplest word. Probably the very first word most babies will say. The word that crosses my mind frequently, but it rarely crosses my lips.


Saturday, June 14, 2008

Almost Complete

Thursday night, Mr. Recommendation and Rocket Scientist stayed until 11pm putting the tile back splash up. The following morning, they came over and grouted and installed the sink while I slept. When I got up, the only things that remained was finish getting the new sink installed, and bringing the new stove from the garage to the kitchen.

The cabinets will be started on next week. It's a completely separate project that will not render my kitchen incapacitated, not to mention this will be more a hands-on project for me, whereas Mr. Recommendation will now start on building the custom counter top for my island. I will only be able to work on the cabinets during the week as I am now back to work full time. (So, Faith, if you are still interested in helping, let me know.)

The new stove, as awesome as it is, comes with a fat owner's manual that I will need to read before I make any attempt to cook on it. Too many bells and whistles confuse my house. I have ordered Brother to not use the oven until he's been through the inservice.

The new sink, also awesome, was a lot bigger than I thought when I bought it. If it had not divider, it would comfortably seat a midget for bathing. A half an inch bigger, it would have been too big to install.

The back splash rocks. When I initially picked out the tile, I think Mr. Recommendation didn't think they completed project would all go together. He pleasantly surprised at how well it does, and commends me on my eye for color. Mom's the artist in the family, I'd like to think I inherited it from her.

I will be posting pictures of the end result as the kitchen project is completed, but I have been taking lots of pictures during the entire process. I just got a new digital camera that I'm infatuated with. I actually like taking pictures again.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Hank the Tank: 4 months

He's growing like a weed. Just this morning, we took him to the vet for his next round of vaccines, and we weighed in at a robust 46lbs. I'm sure he would have weighed more if he would have gotten breakfast before we left.
Brother has been training him to walk on a leash. Whenever he would get out the front door, he would make a beeline over to Mom's house. For the longest time, I figured that he just liked the attention from "Grandma". Later, she revealed to me that whenever he would come over, they fed him string cheese.
The housebreaking has gone really well. We've had zero accidents for a while, unless you count the time he puddled on Mom's kitchen floor. We think he was just excited about the cheese.
Brother has been teaching Hank to "speak" when he wants a treat. While this might be a cute trick, Hank now barks whenever someone is eating. Even a bowl of cereal.

A little more benign trick would be to "shake" or "high five", which he does well with those beefy paws of his.
Hank still loves to play, and when he's not playing with Sam, he's trying to chew on feet. He especially likes to chew on mine when I am attempting to go down the stairs in his favorite game of "Make the Lady Fall Down the Stairs".
The vet also told us that he is now cutting his adult teeth. I told Brother to "hide everything". I haven't figured out what I'm going to do about the larger pieces of furniture.

His poops are getting bigger, and his land mines are easier to spot in the back yard. I don't walk in my back yard barefooted.
Not anymore.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

A Fair Warning

No one, and I mean NO ONE. Better call me between the hours of 9pm, and 10pm. I will be watching the season finale of Top Chef.

And if you do call, not only will I not answer the phone, I will curse you with neverending impotence. That, and lifelong constipation. I have friends who are witches. All it takes is one phone call.

You've been properly warned.

Introducing...Toph's Triage

Toph got his blogging start here, on General Blather, by hand-selecting the videos I would feature (that feature is now defunct on this blog, rest in peace). I always knew it was a matter of time before he left the safe confines of my nest, to go on and start a blog of his very own. I knew this would happen for a couple of reasons:

1. He's smart.
2. He's funny.
3. He can write complete sentences.

Granted, you don't need to have all three of these qualities to have a blog. Hell, I can think of a handful of bloggers (none of which I link to) who have none of these characteristics, and still have a blog.

If your blog is retarded, I won't link to it. Policy. (However, if you don't have a retarded blog and I have not linked you, that only means I haven't discovered you yet.)

At any rate, I've worked with Toph for a couple of years. He started out as a tech, finished nursing school and became an RN. Now, he's transferred off of Hell (i.e. the floor I work on), and onto greener pastures (i.e. the Emergency Room). Sure, I'm sad to see his fine ass, ahem, I mean...him go. Work on my floor will now be very, very boring in his absence. (Who else am I going to relay stupid movie quotes with??)

Without further delay, I present Toph's Triage. Give him a break because his blog is in it's infancy, and while he may not post with the fervor of a certain chronic masturbator that lives in his mother's basement, his posts are worth reading. Join him on his journey into the belly of the beast.

It should be an entertaining ride. I call dibs on a window seat.

Blowing My Wad and Other Blather

Life without a kitchen is hard. Brother and I are living off of anything that either doesn't need to be cooked (i.e. bologna sandwiches), only needs to be reheated in the microwave, or whatever Mom happens to be cooking that night. We take advantage of that last one as often as we can.The original plan was to just keep the existing stove and replace it with what I wanted down the road. However, in the land of home improvement, once the old stove came out, a new one had to go in it's place if I was to get a new one at all.I've always loved the Maytag Gemini, ever since I first seen one at Kant's house. I've lusted for this oven for YEARS. However, I've always stopped short of buying one because I've balked at the price tag, not to mention I lived in an apartment until a year and a half ago. Paying well over a grand for an oven seemed silly when you could get a new oven that worked just as well for around $500. Granted, it wouldn't have the dual ovens, it would still bake you delicious homemade Tollhouse chocolate chip cookies.

I've always gone by the mantra, "If you are going to go for it, go big, or go home." I figured that if I absolutely had to have an oven, I may as well get the one I want the first time around. However, Kansas City is home to a very awesome animal known as the Sears Outlet Warehouse. In this place, you'll find all new appliances, some discontinued, some with a scratch or ding here or there...all for drastically reduced rate. AND, they come with original warranties.

So it was at this magical place, that I found my dream oven. A black Maytag Gemini Dual Oven Smooth Cooking Surface (with five burners) Stove. Retail: $1400. What I paid: $800. They had three, so I picked out the one that had the least noticeable cosmetic flaw, which would be a tiny white scuff mark on the side, which will not even be visible once it's slid into the cubby that has been prepared for it's arrival.

The only downside to buying from Sears Outlet is that they don't deliver. So Mr. Recommendation has to go pick it up tomorrow.

While Mom and I were out and about, we stopped at this place to look for new cabinet pulls for the kitchen. The name of the store is Locks & Pulls. I, on the other hand, kept forgetting the name, so often referred to it as the "Pull My Knob" store. Yes, the sales clerk really liked that one. He said they were originally going to name the store "Knobs and Knockers", but thought they might attract the wrong kind of clientele.

What currently exists are these awful brass looking pulls that's supposed to look like a suitcase strap or something equally retarded (I can't understand why you'd want to switch those out! ~Jeff, Salesclerk). What I selected was just a plain black door pulls. I bought 30 of them, which only set me back $50. I had anticipated spending closer to $100.

As of now, the backer board is in place, and the counter top is currently sitting in the basement, waiting to be installed tomorrow. Sink, faucet, tile work will be done this weekend. Next week, we shall begin constructing the custom built island surface which will be extended an extra 10 inches so I can have a eat-in breakfast bar.
All I know is that if this no-cooking policy continues, Brother is going to suffer a breakdown due to lack of frozen pizzas.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

House of Destruction

Actually, that would just be my kitchen.

Mr. Recommendation and The Rocket Scientist (his teenage son), came over this morning to begin tearing out the old kitchen stuff. Shortly after beginning, Mr. Recommendation manages to slice his finger open on a piece of aluminum trim. After inspection, I point him to the nearest hospital for stitches and a tetanus shot.

A few hours later, he returns and work has resumed. As of now, they have ripped out all the old tile (some assclown installed bathroom tile as the back splash). The oven has been pulled out. The kitchen is a complete and utter disaster. Hank, being the helpful sort, is trying to do his part in keeping things somewhat neat by eating the drywall.

I've been gimping around still. I have been doing the exercises that physical therapy suggested, but my right leg is still incredibly weak. My left leg has been overcompensating for the right leg for so long, my left leg is twice as strong as the right. It's going to take a while for the right leg to catch up. I've been icing my knee down frequently, and I have noticed a big decrease in the swelling. It's still pretty depressing that I can't really do a lot right now. Stairs are still a challenge, and I damn near cried when Sam got out and ran away (he came back 15 minutes later) only because I couldn't run after him. I relish the day I can start swimming. I find that a lot more interesting than the boring leg lifts PT has me doing.

Knee surgery sucks. Don't ever do it unless you absolutely have to.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Pack Your Knives and Go (Cut Your Wrists)

In the land of reality television, there is really only one show I watch religiously. That is Top Chef. For those of you who don't know, Top Chef is a cooking show which pits chefs against each other for a grand prize through various cooking challenges. I started watching during the middle of season two, and here we are now with season four. It took me a while to warm up to the new chef-testants, but now I have my favs, and my most hated.

First...I want to have Richard's babies. Or at least practice. Lots and lots of practice.

Second...As much as I love Richard, I'm pulling for Stephanie to win. Tonight's episode pretty much clinched that for me. Besides, if Richard is upset about not winning, I will make him feel better.

Third...I used to not like Andrew, but he's grown on me. Like mold. I liked him the instant he said "culinary boner". I've yet to use that in conversation, but the opportunity has yet to present itself.

And last...Lisa is the biggest crunt to ever curse a kitchen.

Why she is in the final three, I will never know. She must have made a deal with Satan. Or maybe she's one of those people who have the kind of luck where they fall into a bucket of shit (probably something she cooked) and comes out with the Hope Diamond in hand. She's consistently been in the bottom for worst dishes. She never takes responsibility for the crap she churns out. Not to mention blaming other people. Greasy McBitchface is only in the top three by sheer dumb luck. I can list at least 9 other chefs on that show who were far more deserving to be there...even that one chick who was the very first to be eliminated.


So, in case you are wondering where I will be, I will be over at the Television Without Pity site, bitching more about tonight's episode on their message boards.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Tuesday Blather

I went to my follow-up visit with the ortho doc today. One of his nurses got out the suture removal kit to take out the stitches in my knee. The first one she pulled hurt like a bitch, and I seriously thought about kicking her in the head. She sheepishly said sorry and tried a different technique for pulling out the others. They didn't hurt at all.

Doc explained what was wrong with my knee...something about my patella being out of place and messing everything up for the other knee components. Damn patella. He said the swelling (which is HUGE) should go down in three months. So much for continuing my career as a leg model this summer.

This afternoon, Mr. Recommendation, Mom, and myself went to Home Depot to survey their tile offerings, only to find out they really don't have much to offer. So, we went down the road to Lowes, where the selection was much better. I settled on a nice beige tile in two different sizes, a couple accent tiles, and the crap you use to put tile in place. And because I was getting 10% off my purchase, I went ahead and bought a bamboo framed mirror for the master bath (because I'm keeping with the Asian theme).

So far, I've spent roughly $800 for materials for the kitchen. Whatever tile I don't use, I will be using for the bathrooms. Beige is aesthetically pleasing, especially when you are trying to take a poop.

On Thursday, we will be going back to pick up the counter slabs and some lumber for trim, and the big kitchen project will commence this weekend. I'm not sure how much help I will be, but I will be doing the cabinet work (and Faith, I'm totally taking you up on your offer).

I will be taking pictures as we go along. Expect a small pictorial when we are finished.

Tonight, I engaged in a time-honored tradition of Pork Chop Tuesday. What is PCT, you might ask? Well, it all started when Kant lived here and every Tuesday, she would make pork chops, usually with rice, and mushroom soup gravy. Everyone else would come over and bring a side dish. She did this practically every week.

I'm not as consistent as her, so I host PCT once a quarter, or something like that. I had bought a crap-ton of pork chops and needed to use them. So, we had pork chops (so tender they were falling off the bone), the obligatory cream of mushroom soup gravy, sweet corn on the cob, fresh melon, and rolls. I bought this organic multi-grain rice at Costco, so I used that. The rice was good, but I think for PCT, I will just stick to plain white rice.

I've spent the rest of the evening watching the storm and listening to my ipod. Metallica (pre-St. Anger) and lightening storms are the best ever. Ever.

Now, the pain meds are kicking in. I'm going to bed to rest up for more exciting adventures, much like today's. If life gets any more exciting than this, I don't know what I will do.

Nurse Follies: Professional Courtesy

Brother borrowed the PT the other day and discovered I had a parking ticket wedged between the windshield wiper and the glass. Because it slid down past that black part of the windshield, not to mention I hadn't used my windshield wipers at that point, I hadn't discovered the ticket. The ticket was dated for the 28th of May, the day after my surgery. I remembered that I took some cupcakes in for Toph's last night on our floor. Yes, he's moving on to a larger dating pool, aka, the Emergency Room.

Naturally, I was pissed. I parked the car in front of the hospital because I was on crutches, and there was no way in hell I was going to park a mile away and try to gimp to the main building, while carrying cupcakes.

I guess I could try to speak with Barney Fife and Gang to see if they would rescind the ticket...but it's only for $20, and it seems like a lot of grovelling for $20. I could ask Legal Beagle to see what he can do about it, but I'm fairly confident that what I would be asked to do for payment is more than I'd be willing to this time. Besides, Legal Beagle needs paying jobs...not hand ones.

I may call and speak with someone, but I'm sure it will go nowhere and I will ultimately have to pay the $20. I'll just make sure to remember that in the event Barney or any of his cronies have to be a patient on my floor. This is why it is in their best interest not to ticket nurses. The nurse you ticket today could be the same nurse putting in your catheter tomorrow. A moment of professional courtesy could mean the difference between something smaller than a pencil versus something the size of a garden hose...being shoved into your pee hole.

Police officers, generally, don't ticket nurses for this very reason. There are some who won't because they are married to nurses (it's pretty common), and they know their wives will kick them in the nuts or not put out for a while...or both. Yes, there are some pricks who ticket nurses (as Smo found out recently) because they either haven't heard the rule, or are one some sort of power trip. We're just waiting for the day when they are wheeled to our floor. Waiting.

I remember a while ago, I was at a friend's apartment getting ready for a church-sponsored singles Halloween party. I got some extra scrubs, some footies, hair caps, and stethoscope and we went dressed as, you guessed it, nurses (I was too lazy to be creative that day). While we were getting ready, I was telling my friend about this professional courtesy that existed, for the most part, and she called bullshit.

Fast forward to the end of the night when were are on our way home, my friend (Michelle) driving. She exits the highway and does a "California Rolling Stop", unaware that the county po-po was around the corner. A couple blocks away, and only right around the corner from Michelle's apartment complex, he pulls us over. Asks to see Michelle's license and asks, "You nurses?"

Now, I wasn't technically a nurse at the time. I was taking classes for school, and I worked as a nursing assistant at a hospital. I just nodded. Michelle, who was going to school to learn how to reupholster chairs in snooty fabric for people who have more dollars than sense, remains quiet.

At this time, Officer Friendly tells us his wife is a nurse and asks where we work. I tell him where I work (I didn't lie). Michelle still remains quiet. Officer Friendly and I chit-chat a little on where his wife works, what field she works in, blah, blah, blah. Finally, he says he's going to run the license, and he will be right back.

Minutes later, he returns and announces that Michelle's license has been revoked due to some issue with insurance papers(it all proved to be a filing error later). Coupled with driving without a licence (which she didn't know about at the time), failing to come to a complete stop, and speeding, Officer Friendly tells Michelle that by rights, he could arrest her and take her to jail.

"However," he says, "I won't do that to you because I don't ticket nurses, and my wife would kill me."

He gives Michelle back her license and sends us on our merry way. I wait until we are back at her apartment before I do my little "I told you so" dance.

So, if you are a cop, or are friends with one...please pass along this PSA: The nurse/medic/firefighter you ticket today, could be the person literally saving your ass tomorrow.

And we never forget a face. And we will tell ALL our friends.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Monday's Musings

The weekend was unremarkable. I didn't have to work, and it was still unremarkable. I spent a majority of the weekend in a drug-induced stupor. Saturday night, I geared up for bed the way I usually do: take my pain meds, put on pj's, fill ice bag and strap it to my gimpy knee, go to bed.

I woke up later that night, sleeping in a big, ice cold wet spot. Further inspection would show that my ice bag gave up the ghost and emptied it's contents. The bandage on my knee was soaked, as was my pj's and the bed. So, at 2am, I had to get out of bed for damage control. Still tired, I just threw some towels on the bed, and slept on top of them. With the passing of my ice bag, I've resorted to using a bag of frozen peas.

So if you ever are in need of an ice pack and don't have a proper one, use frozen veggies.

This afternoon, I had lunch with Indy (at his passive insistence) while his car was getting serviced. When Mr. Recommendation came home, we went to Home Depot and I bought a new sink (black granite), new faucet (brushed nickel), and various parts that will go to the plumbing below. Today's visit, I spent just under $500. We have a plan for a custom built island, and I've decided on the counter tops and tile for the back splash. I haven't even purchased supplies for that yet. Demolition to the kitchen will resume by the weekend. I'm really, REALLY stoked. Except about the painting. I'm still burned out from all the painting I did when I first bought the house. However, for the kitchen to be complete, the cabinets must be painted.

Anyone handy with a paintbrush??? I pay in pizza and beer.

On a side note, my conversations with Legal Beagle are becoming more and more, uhh, scandalous. I really need to be a good girl. With him, I can't seem to help it. He brings out the best/worst in me. Take your pick.

Someone needs to come and save me from myself.