Archive for category What Passes for Humour Around Here

Get Me the Frickin’ Goat!

If only there was a magic goat.

Part of an advertising campaign from the Nova Scotia Ministry of Health Promotion and Protection aimed at reducing harm from high risk behaviours. According to the No Magic Goat website:

911 is your friend.

The goat, not so much. (She bites, for one).

She’s cute and furry, but isn’t good for much if you screw up. If the shit hits the fan, and drinking does some serious damage, no goat’s going to save your ass. So, just for the record – if something like what you see in the video goes down at a party you’re at? You might want to think of calling 911 instead of calling for a goat. Did we really have to actually say that? Yes, we did.

You can see how the notion of seeking out The Goat for difficult or impossible situations could go viral. As in “Call a code blue. Where is that damned goat?” or “ICU won’t take the patient. Get me The Goat!” In the emerg, there are many, many scenarios like this where a magical goat would be very useful.

The Goat, incidentally, has — what else? — a Facebook page.

, , , , ,

1 Comment

Flash Mob Bares Breasts, Somewhere Prudes are Moaning

For a good cause, of course:

A bold group of mothers gave a new meaning to the term ‘flashmob’ when they bared their breasts at a major shopping centre today to raise awareness of breastfeeding.

More than a hundred mothers of all ages – some accompanied by their partners – descended on the Trafford Centre in Manchester to feed their babies in front of stunned shoppers to promote the start of NHS-backed National Breastfeeding Awareness Week.

The proud women bore all in full view of customers sitting in the shopping centre cafes to highlight the health benefits of breastfeeding. 

[Via.]

No doubt this will get some people in suburban Atlanta excited.

,

6 Comments

I’ve Been Selected for a Not-So-Clever Marketing Scheme

This blog has been named as one of the  “20 Best Blog for Nurses” by that august institution, Jacksonville University School of Nursing. My jaded, cynical, shrivelled heart tells me it’s a trojan horse marketing scheme, since the button they emailed me links to information on their MScN program, and there doesn’t seem to a “20 Best Blogs for Nurses” page on their site.

I’m curious. How many other nurse bloggers got a note saying they were one of the 20 Best?

, , ,

8 Comments

Five Feet of Fabulous!

Your colon, of course. What else? A funny, retro animation produced by the Canadian Cancer Society to start a colonversation on colon health. Also features a few fart gags and uses the word “poop”, in case you’re a delicate flower. (And who doesn’t like fart jokes? My mother-in-law does, anyway. Don’t ask.)

, , , , ,

2 Comments

Don’t Tell Your Patient This. Or That.

Jo over at Head Nurse had an interesting question about a month ago. She was prepping for an interview for a Reader’s Digest article called “50 Things Your Nurse Won’t Tell”. It’s a common format for RD, I soon learned after checking their website, and features such articles as “50 Things Your Flight attendant Won’t Tell” and “50 Things Your Waiter Won’t Tell You”. In turn, the articles prompt answers along the lines of “Yes, the waiter will really spit into your soup, and how!” See the comments section in Jo’s post for the nursing version.

But the more I thought about it, the more I thought the question as posed by Reader’s Digest was curiously framed. Nurses are supposed to provide information to patients; withholding information seems like, well, unnecessary power-tripping. In fact, I will tell patients things I am not supposed to mention, like about the cosmic suckiness of hospital food (because it does) and how an ECG looks — but if I bring you in right away after doing it, you pretty well know it’s not good.

So there is very little, in the end, I won’t share. There are some things, however, that are beyond the pale. Here’s my short list of ten things I will never, ever tell you, my patient:

  • Anything that would violate confidentiality of anyone in the known universe. Not only because it’s unethical, unlawfully and probably fattening, but also because it’s none of your fracking business.
  • That your dire medical emergency is not, in fact, likely to be all that dire, though I do understand you may have been misled by the name “Emergency Department” into thinking that since you are here, it must be an emergency.
  • Anything that would tend undermine my physician or nurse colleagues. It’s nasty, and more importantly, I have to work with them.
  • You’re about to die. A situation where a patient is fully awake and aware and whose death is imminent is fortunately relatively rare. Even so, I’m not going go to pipe up and say cheerfully, “I think you’re about to cack, so get ready for the ride of your life.” That, as they say, is way above my pay grade.
  • What I really think of the peculiar family dynamics circling your bedside. Opening up that particular can of worms never ends well
  • About your dirty underwear. Yes, we do notice. No, I will never speak of it.
  • Similarly, your body odour will go unremarked. I will not tell you that you’re perfumed like the thing that rudely crawled under the front porch and expired. Even if you stink, you still have dignity and worth as a human being. But if I come in right after assessing you with a basin of hot water and rather a lot of soap and towels and wearing a bright yellow gown and mask, don’t be surprised and/or offended.
  • That I strongly question a pain scale of 10/10 if you’re drinking an extra large Tim’s double-double while telling me this at triage.
  • Along the same lines, claims of severe migraine will provoke some internal doubt, but nary even a raised eyebrow, if you’re also allergic to every analgesic and NSAID in the known universe except Demerol.
  • Your claims of alcohol consumption will be automatically tripled for accuracy.

I’m sure every nurse has his own list. At the same time, I wonder what patients really want to hear from us.

, , , , , ,

12 Comments

I Cannot Write This Blog Without the Love and Support of My Husband

A short farce of two lines.

Me: (excited) Hey, my blog post just got tweeted by the American Journal of Nursing.

Spouse: They told you to knock it off?

(Curtain.)

, ,

7 Comments

Observations and Assessments

Notions too small for a blog post all in one place.

April Foolishness. I guess I got  — or more likely annoyed — a few of you with my little April Fool’s prank. In case you missed it, I faked a news report from Trout Creek, Montana (pop. 261) stating the local hospital was going to fire all it nurses and replace them with housekeepers. I even put up a picture of some hospital in India, complete with palm trees (in Montana!). Some of you waxed quite indignant before realizing it was the First of April. What’s interesting is how readily people believed it — which speaks volumes about nurses’ perceptions about how they are valued by their employers. Which is to say, not much.

Nurse goes all postal on Craigslist. This epic rant has been making the rounds — those with delicate sensibilities may want to avert their eyes:

Well, after a year of getting rejected I have finally decided to give nursing the bird. FUCK YOU NURSING FIELD! Too bad the schools and media are still insisting that people go to RN school. Believe me THERE IS NO FUCKING SHORTAGE! New grads are considered garbage. On top of that, the degree serves no purpose in any other setting. BSN is a complete waste of time and money.

I know, “some people got jobs”. That does not justify the majority (1000’s) who did not and are now working retail for minimum wage. There is something fundamentally wrong with this country. My school counselors, nursing instructors, media and nurses I know urged me to go into nursing. As soon as I got my degree and the check to the school cleared I heard the unmistakable sound of the door to nursing closing—slamming actually. And it is not just the economy. Hospitals turning huge profits stopped new grad programs and hire foreigners.

It is over. I am a stale grad and I am out of options. The new graduates fresh out of their precepts will be flooding the market to add to the already rancid oversaturated pool of disgruntled STALE GRADS. So, I guess giving up a nice job for school, dedicating 6 years (yes, I was foolish enough to get the BSN), dropping 20 grand and putting up with nursing school stress was all for nothing.

And no, higher education is out for 2 reasons. One, you need RN experience to qualify for any NP program. Second, why would I throw more money at a system that just failed me and ruined my life? It is clear that the educational system is bunk. I am completely embarrassed at the education I experienced at the California State University–It is appauling.

I hate nursing. I hate it so fucking much now. The true colors of the profession are now clear. So, now society can have a derelict because that is what I intend to become. I now plan to make a living mooching off the system.

It would probably take a year of posting to unpack all of this. Suffice to say, I do have the tiniest bit of sympathy for her, as I graduated at the nadir of nursing joblessness in the ’90s and was forced to work part-time for the first three years of my career. That being said, I wonder at her commitment to the profession, despite the six years of expensive education; one senses she wants her dream job handed to her on a platter. It doesn’t work like that. So I’m with everyone else: don’t let the door hit you on the way out. Or else come to Toronto — I know some 5 North nurses who would love to have you as a colleague — and they’re hiring.

Uterus, uterus, uterus. In another take to the uterus-as-filthy-word story, now you can incorporate your womb. (Thanks Terri!)

Take me to your leader. In case my American friends and readers haven’t noticed, we’re finishing up the second week of a federal election campaign, where the forces of light and the agents of doom and darkness will collide in a colossal battle for the heart and soul of the nation, etc. Being the flaming left-wing commie-pinko-socialist I am, I will prevaricate until the very last minute till inevitably holding my nose and voting Liberal. All which is to say, if I seem more, um, political in the next few weeks, I can’t help it, it’s the environment.

Hope they were praying for epinephrine. Speaking of Members of Parliament, there’s a report in the Le Devoir this morning that three Conservative MPs witnessing a severe allergic reaction on a flight to Taiwan responded by laying on the hands and praying. I guess I slept through that part in my critical care courses where Prayer comes before Airway, Breathing, Circulation. [ Via. ]

Non-nursing blog shout-out:  Worcester College Gardeners — actual professional gardeners charged with the maintenance of 26 acres of grounds surrounding Worcester College , Oxford, U.K. Reading through the blog puts lie to the notion of effortless gardening: it becomes quickly very apparent all those charming, perfect English garden scenes Canadians wax green over are the result of some pretty intensive labour. What I could do with a flock of minions and unlimited cash!

A pair of quacks. I was happy to learn that both Mehmet Oz and Andrew Wakefield, the fraud-mongering anti-vaccination advocate, were recipients of the annual Pigasus Awards. Oz — and any self-respecting  nurse is always glad to see him taken down a notch or two — was given the award for promoting such quackery as energy fields and faith healing and advocating the bereaved call a psychic for consolation. (Why is this jackass still on television?) Wakefield got the award for continuing to peddle his nonsense despite being called out by the Lancet and the British Medical Association.

Mini-rant. To anyone who has cut and paste from this blog: it has come to my attention bits of my writing — which I remind you are not free, in the sense you can use them at will — are being circulated unattributed and altered contrary to the copyright notice on the bottom of this page. Please note that even if you did not see the copyright notice, you are still subject to its provisions. In other words it is your responsibility to ascertain your obligations.

I really don’t mind people lifting my writing so long as it’s unchanged and attributed to me. I actually like it, because it’s free publicity. But when I find my original work altered to the point where my authorship is in doubt, it starts to piss me off. When you don’t link back to me, you become a thief.

P.S. When I write “shit” I mean “shit”, not some milquetoast euphemism you have determined won’t offend your readers — which  incidentally doesn’t nullify the copyright either.

P.P.S. Why do I think it’s a losing battle?

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

6 Comments

Uterus and Other Bad Words

More April Foolishess, but real this time, from the Florida legislature. Here a blow was struck for the advancement of science by making “uterus” is a dirty word. I suppose that there is a certain delicious irony about objecting to the use of the word “uterus” during a debate on abortion, though I doubt those who find the word offensive would get it:

At one point [State representative] Randolph suggested that his wife “incorporate her uterus” to stop Republicans from pushing measures that would restrict abortions. Republicans, after all, wouldn’t want to further regulate a Florida business.

Apparently the GOP leadership of the House didn’t like the one-liner.

They told Democrats that Randolph is not to discuss body parts on the House floor.

“The point was that Republicans are always talking about deregulation and big government,” Randolph said Thursday. “And I always say their philosophy is small government for the big guy and big government for the little guy. And so, if my wife’s uterus was incorporated or my friend’s bedroom was incorporated, maybe they (Republicans) would be talking about deregulating.

“It’s not like I used slang,” said Randolph, who actually got the line from his wife. He said Republicans voiced concern about young pages hearing the word uterus.

In the interests of prurience, and also of saving tender ears, from, well, science and education in general, I have composed a list of objectionable medical words:

Penis: Well, duh. Also better exclude the adjective “penile”. Also “penal” is problematic. Use “prison.”

Testicle: Again, duh. Testimony, testify etc. are dubious too, doubly so, given the fact (male) witnesses in ancient Rome held their spuds while in court.

Clitoris: Triple duh. Flogging offence. Do not EVER use. As a substitute, I’ve always liked le bonhomme au canot, which has a certain charm, but might be objectionable in the U.S. because it’s so obviously French. Best never to speak of it, or even think about it.

Cervix: Leads to the u-place.

Vagina: Leads to the, um, cervix. Also, do not use “Regina” as in the capital of Saskatchewan, because you might think of what rhymes with Regina, and that is the road to Hell.

Coccyx: Do you really want to say this in public?

Bartholins’s Gland: Just sounds dirty.

Mesentery: Say it with me, slowly: ME-sen-ter-ry. Get a little illicit thrill? Don’t use it.

Menstruation: Eeew.

Masturbation: Is a sin, and therefore the word is sinful. Only use if you’re sure you worship the Devil:

Abdomen: Where the u-place is, and is close to other “bad” parts. Avoid. Use “tummy” instead.

Pubic: Generally offensive, and in any case it’s not a word you’re likely to drop into everyday conversation:  “Hey, I have a pubic lump.” Not.

Anus, rectum, colon etc.: Someone, somewhere will be offended if you use these.  Besides, they are icky.  Just don’t.

Buttock: Near the above. Makes you think of other, more collequial, badder words.

Oral: Do I really need to tell you?

Epididymis: Only leads to troubling questions of the knee-bone-is-connected-to-the-thigh-bone type. In any case most guys don’t realize they possess them.

Semen: Only should be used when speaking of sailors.

The list, actually, could be endless. Feel free to add.

.

, , , , ,

8 Comments

All I Can Manage Today are Random Thoughts

Just can’t get into the groove today: started two blog posts and after writing a couple of paragraphs, they both look like gibberish to me. Funny thing is, this is the very first completely free day I’ve had in a couple of weeks, and I had planned to get some serious writing done today. Focus seems to be the problem. Maybe it’s the fact the house looks like a hobo camp, or that the pile of laundry is rapidly gaining altitude, or that I have a some minor, yet pressing chores to do — in any event, the Muse has gone elsewhere today.

***         ***          ***          ***           ***

One of the speakers at the Trauma Nursing Conference I went to a little while ago was from the Society of  Trauma Nurses, which seems to be principally known for providing the Advanced Trauma Care for Nurses course. STN markets itself towards the “leadership of trauma nursing around the world” and yet its stated aim is “become the premiere nursing organization in the world for advancing the nursing care of injured patients.” It might be the February crankies talking, but does anyone else see the contradiction in this? Or the condescension? I mean, how can anyone talk about being the best nursing organization in the known universe, while ignoring the front line? Isn’t leadership and excellence for all nurses? Incidentally, the speaker, Deborah Harkins, mentioned that on a membership survey 477 nurses identified themselves as “leaders” while only 36 were front-line staff. She didn’t seem to think this was a problem.

After Harkins gave her talk, I asked my table mates if any of them intended to join STN. Much hilarity ensued. My guess is that until STN changes its membership philosophy, its goal to be the gold standard for trauma nurses will prove elusive

***         ***          ***          ***           ***

More about the conference. It was actually pretty well done, and worthwhile attending.  Only a couple of presentations were out-and-out duds. But I have to ask: perusing the program, why were the vast majority of presenters physicians? At a nursing conference?

***         ***          ***          ***           ***

I saw a disturbing bright light in the sky the other day. Oh right, it was the sun.

***         ***          ***          ***           ***

I’m going to clean out my linky-loos on the blogroll later today, maybe, after I do the laundry. Anyone have any tips on good nursing/health care blogs to add?

***         ***          ***          ***           ***

Still no word about the leap to the Dark Side. I’m not that anxious about whether I got the job or not. But I dislike the wait. It’s like being told, “We are going to make a life-altering decision about you or not, and we’re going to string you along until the last possible moment before we reveal our choice.” That’s what aggravating.

 

, , , , , , ,

4 Comments

“The Latest in Sanitary Conveniences”

[A rerun: I will return on 16/02/11. I feared when I reread this, thatI might have been a little harsh. After due consideration, no. However, the new low point in Western civilization was actually the email I got some little while later telling me "even the obese have the right to a clean perineum." Amen. Originally posted 1/10/09]

The telling lines: “it extends your reach by a full eighteen inches” and “follows the contours of your body and comfortably cleans.”

Dear Lord.

I know, before you tell me, about the folks with back injuries and decreased range of motion and the morbidly obese who can’t reach around.  (That there is a market for this product may represent the nadir of Western civilization.)

But still.

Dear Lord.

,

2 Comments

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,245 other followers

%d bloggers like this: