Monthly Archives: September 2012

Just Wow…

So the world completed yet another trip around the sun towards the end of last week, and I’ve added one to the number I might admit to (or might not) if asked how long I’ve been making the trip. I spent the first part of the week with my family downstate (and celebrated a bit early with them) but came back towards the end of the week so that I could head down to WV for the Wounded Warriors blogshoot (far too much fun to be discussed as a sidenote here). But that meant I got to spend my birthday at home with someone special.

And he managed to surprise me. He’s been teasing me for weeks (maybe even months?) about a “s00per sekrat project” he had in the works with a co-conspirator, and I’d been strictly warned that I was not allowed to ask about it…not to pry, not to beg hints, and not to be nosy in the least. I wasn’t, so I couldn’t have been more surprised.

It’s a key-chain cannon! It’s a tiny little black-powder cannon in .22cal (which also means that it is sized birthday-candle caliber!). And it does shoot! (We just have to get all of the proportions right in the recipe for powder and wad and pellet, but it does!)

So…for my birthday, I get not just something that goes bang, but something that he had made for me. My boyfriend is awesome!

Categories: Firearms | Tags: | 4 Comments


Always remember, in our minds and in our hearts.

I know I will.

Categories: Wonderings | Tags: | Leave a comment


Last night, THOT and I were sitting at the coffee shop and playing cards. I’d grabbed a deck on my way out of the house. It turned out to be a sealed deck from a long-defunct casino in Las Vegas. Still sealed, mind you; it took a sharp blade to cut the tape on the flap to get at the cards.

We played a few games. I couldn’t even come close to winning. Then something odd happened…

After we piled four 5s onto each other and set the stack aside, I drew a card from the deck. It was another 5. The 5 of hearts, to be specific. I started laughing to the point that I couldn’t even explain why and just flipped the FIFTH 5 over.

THOT took one look at it and called, “Hax!!!” Nevermind that he’d been winning! Nevermind that it was a sealed deck! And from a casino, no less! (Of course, a casino that has been out of business for years… Makes you wonder a bit?) As if I’d somehow managed to magic up an extra card to toss into a deck (and have it be something harmless, like a 5 of all things)… But the rest of the deck was intact, so we kept playing.

Funny, though, how my luck changed once we got rid of that 53rd card.

Categories: Wonderings | Tags: , | 1 Comment

It’s Been a Week

A relatively rough one at that, and it’s time for the weekend to start. Nothing overly huge and devastating, when I look back at it, but each little thing just kept piling up until the break point was almost reached.

I’m now a one-hamster family. I know that the little critters don’t have a forever-long lifespan, but a year is a bit young for one to just up and drop without warning. She was running full-speed on the wheel one night with her sister, but then a day or two later, I realized that I hadn’t seen the two of them at the same time for a couple of days. I went to investigate and found what I didn’t want to know. So ThingOne is getting more petting and a few more treats, even if her little pea-sized brain doesn’t make the connection as to why.

It’s been a bad few days at work for everyone this week. There have been some communication breakdowns at work lately that are getting more and more egregious, and they’re to the point where people are going to start getting hurt, if they haven’t already. We’re too tight-staffed to be sloppy or to let things slide, so when things happen, feelings get bruised and are difficult to soothe (and they should be…we feel strongly for our patients and are willing to fight for them).

Doing what I do, there is no easy way to deal with bad news. Not for us (be it the doctors, the nurses, or others on the staff) and most definitely not for the families whose lives are turned upside down. Parents seem to know as soon as one of us walks into the room with bad news just what it is that we have to tell them. There’s something in the way we walk, the expression on our faces, or the way we hold ourselves in preparation for delivering news of this sort that alerts them to it. Sometimes the tears come before we can even get a word out and half of the discussion comes in trying to calm a parent enough to hear what it is that needs to be said. Other times, the parents refuse to hear the words, to listen, or to engage in the discussion at all. It’s as though their worries and fears have deafened them, made them unable to cope with the news, even for the sake of their child.

In some ways though, having a conversation with the parents of a child with a known chronic illness can be more difficult, especially if they’re not prepared for their child to have taken a sudden turn for the worse. Children are very resilient and can live with many debilitating illnesses for years without ever giving it a second thought, but at some point, they decompensate and end up in my treatment room in extremis. There comes a point where we have to ask how far a parent wants for us to go in resuscitating their child, and if they’ve never been asked that question before, it’s a shock. If, as for many families in our area, there is a religious concern with “life support”, it becomes an even bigger issue, especially when the question is raised emergently. It’s not a decision to be made lightly or under pressure, so I cannot think of a worse time and place to be trying to make it (especially if you haven’t ever been told to think about it before) than with a doctor standing there in front of you saying, “Your child is very sick, close to dying. If we have to put him on life support, to take over breathing for him with a machine, do you want us to do that?” And let me tell you…being that doctor, asking that question…to see the fear, the terror in the parents’ eyes as they realize what I’m asking, it kills a little part of me each time.

Sorta’ puts my hamster into perspective…but I think a little glass of whisky may be in order tonight.

Categories: Wildlife, Wonderings, Work | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Time Passing

I drove down to the far corner of the state last weekend. I noticed two things by the side of the road as I drove.

The lack of rain this summer was very evident in the cornfields along the side of the freeway the entire length of the drive. The corn was dry, brown, and shriveled, much shorter than it should be at this time of year, too. It’s been a long, hot summer.

But the other thing I saw was that some of the trees are already changing their leaves. Not a lot of them, and not brilliant colors yet, but it’s starting. Is fall already here? or is it just another sign of the long, hot summer, that the trees are so exhausted from a lack of rain that they’re going to shed their leaves early in self-defense this year?

And if fall comes early, can winter be far behind?

Categories: Wonderings | Tags: | 2 Comments

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