19 December 2006

The Next Generation

19 December 2006

"The Next Generation"

 

This is Lauren.  She is the daughter of a life long friend of mine who came to visit me at work the other night.

I thought that this picture was more than adorable, it helps me keep in perspective just how great life can be.

Lauren is working to fix Mr. Snowman here and I have to say that I had a wonderful time with my new adoptive niece (she calls me Uncle Mike).

So, for all of you out there, I hope you can appreciate this shot like I do and I hope you have a wonderful holiday season.

The second part of the last entry will be forthcoming soon.

Rounding Third and Heading Home,

M-

16 December 2006

And The Plot Thickens

16 December 2006

"And The Plot Thickens"

Murphy's Law

–noun
the facetious proposition that if something can go wrong, it will.
Also called Murphy's First Law.

[Origin: Americanism; after a fictitious Murphy, allegedly the name of a bungling mechanic in U.S. Navy educational cartoons of the 1950s]
 
 
Oh yeah....he's back.
 
2030 Hours
 
Only Thirty-Five more hours to go!!!!!
 
 
Yep, you heard it right, sports fans. Yours truly has embarked on yet another journey of debauchery, madness, and mayhem in the dubious form of yet another grueling forty-eight hour shift.  Here to act upon the call to duty for those who are in need, for those who are troubled, for those who need a lending hand.  With one activation of the emergency signal, it is I who will come to your beckoned call in order to restore some balance in your life. It will be me who arrives to disipate the pain and anguish that may have overwhelmed you medically. It is I, who has come to help.   If you hear my distinct sirens off over the horizion, do not be afraid, for it is I who is coming....to rescue you.
 
Okay, turn off the damn music!
 
Pfft...who're we kidding.   They're all screwed.
 
Yes folks, it's a crap shoot.  Like playing Roulette.
 
   Place your bets......
 
C'mon, you know me. I am sympathetic to your needs, unless you did something really stupid...then it is just plain funny. Sorry...serious here.
 
Fortunate for me (Famous last words), Darnell came in at 1900 (7:00 PM for all those militarily challenged) which meant only one thing...
 
I didn't have to be in the back.....WOO HOO!!!!!
 
Yes, my little Darnell had went and got herself her paramedic card which is nice because since January, I have done every call that we went out on with the exception of maybe 3.  One gets a little tired of watching the world go by while sitting backwards in a fiberglass shell.  But it does make for some interesting stories (hence the blog).
 
My job....well, all I have to do is drive Ms. Daisy around.  I's think I be able to handle that.
 
Getting ready for the evening, I began to do some chores around the station.  Placing my mp3 player on, I went into the utility room to put some laundry in the washer. (Yes ladies, I can do laundry and I know to separate colors too).  Jamming to the tunes that resonated from my headphones, a distinct sound prioritorized my thought process taking precedence over the melodic tunes entering my sub-conscious entertaining my brain.
 
It was the bells of the emergency phone. 
 
Time to kick the tires and light the fires. (I didn't say that, Jimmy did in Independence Day).
 
  Yeah...there they are.
 
Running back to the bunks, I switched out my slippers (yeah, so, I have slippers) for my boots, grabbed my coat, and headed on our way illuminating the night sky with red and white strobes while piercing the calm of the country manner with our distinct siren tones as we literally drove off into the sunset.
 
Oh yeah, the song on my MP3player...."There Goes My Hero" By the Foo Fighters.
 
Ironic.
 
So, here we are. Off to the High School for a female who seems to have or had passed out while performing at her choir concert.  All I can say is that must have been one hell of a note she hit.
 
Pulling into the school parking lot, I noticed the unbelieveable amount of people who were scattering to their cars like they were leaving a bad party that hadn't really started yet.  Scanning the mob a little more, my gaze locked onto a set of flailing hands waving frantically in the air as if to say "over here". Attached to those hands were a small body who reminded me of a NASCAR vehicle coming around turn four at Daytona during the final lap at the big race...only to finish last.  You know it is pointless, but you have to give them an "A" for effort. God, I hope she doesn't fall.
 
Pulling around to the doors that I needed to, I parked the truck and instucted Darnell to throw everything on the cot and we would wheel it in like that. I mean, why make things harder. (this is called preceptive foreshadowing here).
 
Down a hall, a couple of turns, and up some stairs, we were at the beginning of a maze of curtains and particians that made the stage seem endless and cauldroness.  After unwielding myself out of the faded black velvet fabric of the curtains, I focused on a group of people surrounding a young soprano
 
 NO...Not THESE Sopranos....
 
 THIS kind.
 
A Young seventeen year old student laid there on her back in some considerable pain with something obviously going on with her as her answers to basic questions were correct, but yet delayed.  According to her mother, who stood vigil by her side, she stated that this was the second time in as many weeks that this had happened and that she was already seeing a specialist for an unknown diagonsis as to what is causing this to happen.  Handing Darnell the sphygnamometer (this is the medical term for a blood pressure cuff..see, you learned something), we got some quick vitals on the young chanteuse and I hooked her up to the monitor to get a quick looksy as to what was happening with her pump.
 
Reviewing what I had found, I was beginning to get that distain look on my face not really liking what I was finding. 
 
I decided to perform the Cincinnati Stroke Test (You can Google this one yourself), I found that her left side was comparibly weaker than her right.  This I didn't like...at any age.
 
Okay, now it was time to grab and go. I didn't want to play around anymore here on scene and if in the event it WAS or IS a stroke, then time is of the essence.  You see, here is where I run into a medical dillema.  Once a stroke starts, the clock starts.  We, as EMS personnel, have 180 minutes to get them to definative care so that the medical team can give Fibrinolytics (another word for you to look up...yes, there is homework). 
 
THAT was not the problem.  She had the neuro deficit and she would be to a hospital well within the 3 hour clock. The only thing working against her? 
 
 
 Anyone???
 
Her age. (give yourself 3 points if you got that)
 
The minimum age is 18. She was only 17.  So the overall medical approach would have to be different.  How does that affect me in the field?
 
Again...anyone?
 
 
Well, it doesn't (ha, tricked you).  I still will treat my patients the same.
 
Now, it was time to load and go. 
 
Here my friends is why you keep coming back.....
 
Turning to go get our cot, Speed Racer reappeared out of breath and white as a ghost.
 
Looking at her, she was already beginning to annoy me, but I could tell she wanted to say something.
 
"What's the matter, girl, did Timmy fall in the well?"
 
No, I didn't say that....but I wanted tol.
 
"You have to come quick!" She managed to get out.
 
I really don't HAVE to do anything..I was already here.
 
"Why, what's going on, and breathe already. The last thing I need is you passing out."
 
That I DID say.
 
"Someone in the parking lot is having chest pains and is close to passing out." She mustered in one long, deep breath.
 
Now...let's review something really quick here....
 
In the country...two medics....two calls....one ambulance......
 
God I hate Muprhy.
 
To Be Continued......
 
Rounding Third and Heading Home,
M-
 
 
 

11 December 2006

Going Global, Baby

11 December 2006

"Going Global, Baby"

I have to say, that when you write a blog entry, it is nice to get a little noteriety with it knowing that people are actually reading the stuff that you put down.   I didn't think one of my entries that I wrote would ever go this big though..lol

My "12 Days of Christmas - EMS style" seems to have taken a life of its own and is all over cyberspace in the EMS and even Non EMS community.    The funny thing about it all (even though I reposted it a couple of weeks ago) is that I wrote that two years prior to this date...I guess the entry is like a fine wine and needs to age.

If you type "12 days of christmas - ems style" in google, you will see my entry pop up all over the place.  I think this is kinda cool.

I do have one request that you can help me with. I took a lot of pride in writing this as I do with all my entries, and it isn't the fact that I am conceded or self serving, but if someone else DOES try to take the credit for this entry, please set them straight and tell them the truth.

You can go into my archives in December 2004 and see this entry as I wrote it wayyyy back when.

On that note, I would love to thank all of you who have come and read my blog and I will continue to write more as to my expiriences out in the real world.

Have a safe holiday...

Rounding Third and Heading Home,

M-

06 December 2006

Ground Rules

05 December 2006

"Ground Rules"

Okay, it is now winter time. I can't say officially because the calendar still recognizes it as late autumn (has to be VERY late).

Anyways, there are some ground rules that I would like to set out to you all.  There are certain "rules" that I would like to express to all my readers out there in blogging land to help make it easier for EMS and safer for you all.

Keep in mind that these are based on those who, like me, have that fun little morphed precipitation called snow. For those of you who are fortunate enough to have  sunshine all year round and warm weather whenever you want it, you may have to adjust these rules some, but there is no doubt in my mind that you will get creative.

Okay, set your printers for "print"...here we go.

10.  Make sure your walk is shoveled.  People, I know that the distance from the street to your front door may be that of a stone's throw and you can literally walk out your door and get your mail out of the on-street box, but I have to tell you how things work.  No matter HOW close to the street you are, there will ALWAYS be some small mountain of snow that we have to trudge through.  Now, being knee deep in the frozen tundra is something that I can adapt to, after all, I DO get the discovery channel, but here is a little oversight that you all may have overlooked.  The cot that we bring in to tote you away, is NOT four-wheel drive.  Have you seen those strong men competitions where the guy is pulling the bus with just his weight....well, it is something like that.  I have no qualms with going sledding, but let's do it with a sled.

9.  Place your weapons on safety. Snow is fun for the most part.  It really can create an enviornment where the possibilities are endless...and it makes for a great secondary refrigerator if your appliance ever breaks down.  And, yes (for all you Star Wars faithful) it makes a great re-enactment for the Hoth world...

 This is Ohio in the winter....

This is Hoth...see what I mean.

The only difference is....Hoth has Giant Laser cannons.

Which brings me to my next point...

Snowball fighting is great fun. It really,truly is. But, for God's sake, watch what you are packing your snow with.   Sure, I bet it will bring you TONS of laughs to see little Billy go down after you tagged him square in the face with a snowball that you laced with some sort of stone, knocking him to the ground, and causing the snow around him to look like velvet curtains from the 70's (you all remember those...I know you do). Now Billy has to go take a 300 dollar taxi ride (taxi, cab, squad...the only difference is the we go around traffic legally). His Christmas gift is those 9 stitches that you induced below his left eye.   Yeah, he will look like a pirate for a few days with the eye patch he now has to wear, but it was well worth the laugh, right? I will tell you what, let me come and swing a golf club at your mid-section and we will call it even.  Remember kids when it comes to making snow balls, rake the ground before you take them down.

8. The thing called The Weather Channel.    Okay..look down..

                              

 

See the pink doppler echos..that is what we call Accumulating snow.  What does that mean?  It means that you don't wait until that echo is right over your house to start shovelling your driveway because you don't want your car to get snowed in that you will need for work in like 18 hours. Or the fact that all of a sudden you remembered you need to go to the store in the beginning of the mother of all blizzards because you forgot to get cigarettes for tomorrow.  Why is this important? Well, here it is for you. Pink is snow, with snow, there is a temperature drop, when the temperature drops, things freeze, when you are outside, YOU freeze, when you freeze, you get frostbite, when you get frostbite, the tissues in your body turn black, when they turn black, you have to go to the hospital, and most likely, a doctor gets to use a medical version of Black and Decker on you toes so that you don't get infection and die.

Keep an eye on the weather so you don't get caught out in it.

7.  MMMmmm...Fruitcake!!!!  This is an easy one folks.  Fruitcake may be enjoyable (to whom I don't know), you may like it with your favorite tasty beverage, sitting by the fire, listening to Bing Crosby chime away on the stereo.  You take a great big bite of the multi colored....whatever it is, and swallow the goodness (because you can't throw it back up). Suddenly, it sure is really getting harder to breathe.  As your friends think you are playing some form of charades, you begin to get really light headed and pass out because your once fruit flavored goodness has sent you into a coma. Why???  Because there are nuts in the fruitcake and you happen to forget that allergy that you had.  Now I get to interupt your private time, stick you with a couple of needles and if you are more than fortunate, put the most uncomfortable piece of plastic tubing down your throat to help you breathe a little better.   You can thank your Aunt Betty for the cake after you get off the ventilator.

6.  Ice May Be on Bridge.  Yep...it will be.  I 100% guaruntee that while you are crossing the bridge, the idiot on your left will remember that he needed to make a right turn in 100 feet and cut you off because he is way too busy to get off his or her damn cell phone to actually look to see if you are right there and are most likely driving a car that didn't have the turn signal option installed.  You brake, the car doesn't. Next thing you know, you have me tapping on your window while standing in the middle of the median with cars whizzing by me at over 50 MPH creating a wind tunnel of sub zero air that even NASA can't replicate wondering if your car is actually on fire or if that is still the powder from the airbag that deployed in your once full sized car that now is the size of an 84 Escort....

 (Yeah..remember these)

Don't worry about the other girl...she's fine...her cell phone still works.

5.  Remember where you parked. Why do I say this? Because it never fails that someone ALWAYS forgets where it is that they left their chariot and will spend a good portion of the evening trying to retrieve their automobile. So, now, you are walking on the ground that is unfamiliar to you as to when you walked up to the store. You turn to look for some sort of sign and you get it...the license plate of the car right in front of you staring at you as if it were mocking you...because you slipped on the ice and fell straight on your ass.  Now, besides the twisting of your ankle and the shooting pain that it causes, the only other thing that is affected is your pride. Be that as it may, you now are fortunate enough to get baby sat by mall security while you wait for me to manuver through the endless rows of traffic and idiots who don't know that the big white truck, with all those lights means DON'T MOVE, I AM COMING AROUND.  So there you are, getting watched over by a pizza faced rent a cop who has as much first aid training as any third grader might have telling you not to move (which you already aren't doing) because help is on the way. (Thanks Genius). But hey, he got to turn on his pretty yellow lights and also gets to talk into his big, outdated radio.

 There he is....wave to him.

Don't Worry...I will be right there.

4. The Youth of America. Look, this is the easiest thing in the world. You KNOW that some kid is going to come to your door and ask if you want your driveway shoveled.  Here is my advice. Let him do it...So it cost you 10 bucks, you get to stay inside and drink hot cocoa while the next generation of young Americans provide cheap labor and learn the value of the almighty dollar.   See, here is what is going to happen.  You will go out there and think, "I can save a buck or two and do this myself.". You grab your trusty snow shovel and begin trailblazin' to the end of the driveway.  This is no sweat...you got this....but did you forget to let on to your back that you "have this". Now you are standing bent over looking like Quasi Moto

 Yeah him....

bent over in pain because your back just went out.  Sucks that you can't move doesn't it.  Not to mention the fact that it has started to snow and you are without yoru cell phone to call me to come rescue you.  When I finally DO get there, it is like an all out chore to get you on the cot and in a position of comfort to take you to the hospital so you can get some really good drugs to make you feel better....so you can go out and do it all over again.

For those of you with the snow blowers....there is always one moron who will put their hand in the discharge chute to clear the compacted snow....Hope you can write left handed.

And for those who get their driveway plowed......have them come anddo mine when they are done.

3. Deck the Halls...  Christmas. That wonderful and festive time where people go all out to decorate their abodes to celebrate the holiday season.  Whether it is finding the right tree to making the perfect cookie, people love to go all out.  This includes putting the lights on the house.  Okay, even I love to go out and make my house look great for the holidays, but here is something I don't do...I don't string the lights up alone.   Guys....I know it is a macho-ego thing to place the lights on the house while the little misses stays inside and cooks or whatever else they do. But think about this. Who is holding the ladder?  The higher you climb, the more it is gonna hurt when you fall down...and, believe me, you WILL fall down. (Well, I use "you" in teh second person narrative...I am sure that only a few will actually fall...but they are usually in my district).  Now I get to come and park in front of your house with all my lights on so your neighbors will all come out and be the nosey folks that are part of our human nature to see you on the ground with a blanket on keeping warm until I can backboard you and get you in the truck.

Good news, though. While the squad is up front, you DO have the best light display.  Give 'em all a thumbs up...you deserve it.

2. Lights Out.  Quick and easy here...when you go to bed...unplug the tree.....

Otherwise This...

Turns into this...

treefire1mid.jpg (16498 bytes)

Hope you have your insurance agent's home number...

1. Remember...the Tortoise beat the Hare.  I know we all run late from time to time, but the faster you drive, the worse you are gonna be if you hit something.  Throw in the ice, the snow, the deer, and the other not-paying-attention motorist and you have a recipie for disaster.  Let me meet you while you are walking out of a restaurant or store...not by me peeling the door off of your overturned car.

Just be careful out there.......

I will be back....real soon, but until then...stay safe.

Rounding Third and Heading Home,

M-