Thursday, July 31, 2008

This is for all the great float nurses, per-diem nurses, registry/agency/mercenary nurses. The ones who drop in, perhaps having never been in your unit before, grab the reins of the wild horse, and get through the shift and the shit, no matter what is thrown at them.

The Worst Friggin Mess

You know the drill
It goes something like this,
You're a visiting nurse
Expecting a kiss,
Because you're helping your colleagues
In their time of dire need,
Then you get the worst patient's
Like a title and deed.

You know the pattern
It's the same every time,
They'll abandon you for a nickel
And screw you for a dime,
Their faces painted with relief
When you appear at the door,
They'll say, "Thanks for coming back"
Now, we'll screw you some more.

You know it's damn common
Ya, it's really a shame,
But the odds are stacked against you
In the mercenary game,
You're the knight in shining armor
For the damsel in distress,
And what thanks do you get?
Of course - the worst friggin mess!!!


Monday, July 28, 2008

I must have been under the weather, or mentally malnourished, or who knows what, but in my exalted opinion, I was a screwup last night. The only bright outcome was that my companions were still alive at sunrise, I did provide true compassion, and there was no measure of a shortened existence, other than the usual passage of time, that everyone is accountable for within the context of their own lifespan. I have made this intentionally vague, to protect the guilty.

Beyond Measure

I worked nowhere near my potential

Far below my possible peak,

Could I blame it on a Sunday

The proverbial end of the week?

Although I hadn't slaved or overworked

My mind was in under-drive,

If you observed me from a distance

You might wonder if I was alive.

How many things I overlooked

I am embarrassed to admit,

If you had to follow my performance

You might develop a snit,

And possibly grumble, snarl and mumble

Inhibiting perfected profanity,

The end-result of my hand off

May have driven you to insanity.

From my point of view, I failed beyond measure

But time is the ultimate reaper,

If I were to judge me, on this singular moment

I wouldn't qualify to be a street-sweeper,

But with the experience of decades of living

I've come to accept the inescapable,

Some days I'm a rip-roaring genius

And other times, completely incapable.

Luckily, imperfection runs rampant

Amidst the society that I keep,

And in time my miserable performance

Will reside at the bottom of a heap,

Of old memories, never to be revisited

Rehashed, reworked or reviewed,

Reliving such miserable moments?

Why surely my psyche would be screwed.



Sunday, July 27, 2008

A mandatory class is coming up where one of the things we have to be familiarized with, is called "Fall Risk Management". It stands to reason that this is appropriate, because summer will be over soon, and we better be ready for the risk of Fall.

Fall Risk Management

I'm glad to see that my superiors
Are finally on the ball,
It's the middle of the summer
And the coming of the Fall,
And although it's risky business
It still happens every year,
Fall shall follow summer
'Tis really nothing there to fear.

But in business, there is caution
And in Healthcare, even moreso,
Risky yearly seasons
Cause a tremor of the torso,
You might call it intuition
Gut-feelings, sense of danger,
Perhaps a childhood experience
With a dark and sinister stranger,
Led to feelings of inadequacy
Every summer of each year,
Prompting Fall Risk Management
To mediate the fear.


We're also supposed to learn about the "Patient Classification System". Now if that isn't some classic office-speak, then I don't know what is. Hello!!, what in the heck is wrong with our current system. Well anyways, I think I figured it out:

Patient Classification System

Patient Classification System
Or P. C. S.,
Is another veiled attempt
To clean up the mess,
Left by a predecessor
Whom I'd rather not mention,
Uncontrolled gossip
Is bound to bring attention.

Patient Classification System
Or Pat-Class-Sys,
Is bound to be successful
No more hit and miss,
With objectives left floundering
Like a fish out of water,
All of our problems will disappear
Like lambs led to slaughter.


And last but not least, apparently there is "new" information about sepsis and stroke. I have made a recommendation to see that we also address the inclusion of humor, and the recognition of emotion, in regards to the needs of bedside caregivers.

A Balance of Emotion

Early recognition of sepsis

Early recognition of stroke,

Early recognition of the necessity

To accommodate room for a joke.

No matter how stressful the moment

When chaos and calamity prevail,

Medical decisions that change by the second

Must allow for the chance they might fail,

And where the long-term survival of caregivers

May be overlooked in the sea of commotion,

We must allow room for laughing and crying

As our lives hang in a balance of emotion.



Here at employment central, we are being warned that we have to learn about "Johns Hopkins Tool". I am totally clueless about what the heck that means, but let me show you what I think:

Johns Hopkins Tool

I don't think I want to know
About Johns Hopkins tool,
I may be a Nurse
But I'm not a fool,
To be poking around
In his business that way,
I'd rather read a report
Than see that tool, anyday.

I really don't care
About Johns Hopkins tool,
I learned all about that stuff
Way back in school,
And if he wanted us to know
Don'tcha think he'd send a letter,
Nope, I don't want to see it
'Cause it don't get any better.

You see, I don't understand
How seeing Johns Hopkins tool,
Will make me any smarter
And I'm already cool,
So what could be the point
Of this mandatory class?
It better not be something
About Johns Hopkins ass!!!


Thursday, July 24, 2008

Flatter Not Fatter

I create some funnies at times, too:


Question: "What do you call it when a couple of he/she Atria are hanging out, and he says:

"Hey Miss Atria, you are looking finer than fine tonight, in your new mini-skirt".

And she replies:

"Well, my man, you are pretty hot yourself. Your appendage is looking really awesome!"

Answer: Atrial Flatter.


Monday, July 14, 2008

Busy patient care assignments, used to be called "heavy". Now, in the century of obesity, a heavy patient is just that! Probably over 150 kilo's and gaining weight every second that we drop in another flippin' milliliter of fluid, in a futile attempt to resuscitate them. Oh boy, just weight...........

Low Budget Anarchist

It was a terrible assignment

That's all that I can say,

Luckily it doesn't happen

Each and every day,

Because I'm telling you, if it did

Hellfire would be on call,

I'm a low budget anarchist

When it's said and done, and all.

It was a gol-darned bloody miracle

That I didn't go berserk,

Because I had a premonition

On that night I went to work,

That I'd get the crap assignment

As if it was my turn,

Well, if this is a conspiracy

They've got a lot to learn,

About the possible repercussions

When dealing cards like these,

A lot of players suck it up

And tolerate the squeeze,

But if you're dealing to an anarchist

You better hedge your bets,

They do not suffer fools, my friend

Nor tolerate your debts.

It was a horrible experience

But I managed to survive,

I found a couple comrades

In the dungeons of that dive,

Lurking in the shadows

And offering advice,

They didn't have to do that

They already paid the price,

With broken bones and muscle strains

Torn ligaments and more,

After caring for similar patients

That weigh a hundred kilo's and more.



In the Corner

When crap is served once, I can take it

But when it's served twice, I'll complain,

I'll stand up for the others, who were dealt the same cards

And who nearly succumbed to the strain,

They are licking their wounds, in the corner

Dealing hillbilly heroin and horse,

After losing another round of “lift-law” legislation

They are about to tell Nursing; Divorce!



Following in that same vein, led me to this declaration.

My Caring Attention

My sympathy stops at 100 kilo's

After that you are on your own,

We'll add up the totals of various parts

Subtracting the cartilage bone,

Compartments or regions that seem to cause trouble

Will vie for my caring attention,

Beyond the weight limit, previously set

There will just be an honorable mention.

I really don't have sympathy for the weight that's beyond

You allowed yourself to get so darned fat,

I have sympathy for the Nurses

With their narcotic-filled purses,

I'm telling you, that's where my sympathy's at.

We're busting our backs, and separating vertebrae

All at your obesity expense,

Surprised we are not

You have no insurance, on the spot,

We're aware, there exists no recompense.



Sunday, July 13, 2008

Time and Motion studies, always bring out the "fear and loathing" in America. Just ask the recently departed, Hunter S. Thomson.

Time and Emotion: A Study

(Part I)

It began with an idea, an objective

To analyze motion and time,

An innocent theory, to derive better data

It devolved, into the worst of slime.

Seasoned professionals, we call ourselves

We ought to be mature, don't you think?,

But when someone observes us in practice

Why does it, give one cause to blink?

I pause now, and ponder the question

What causes discomfort in the action?

Being observed by a peer of my own

Why does this render a class-action?

Discomfort thrives amidst suspicion

Is there an ulterior motive in play?,

Are there camera's hidden in the trash barrels

Every move that we make, on display?

Truly, that scenario is doubtful

Perhaps historical issues are the drama,

It gives one a sense of being spied upon

Under the watchful eye of the Grand Lama.



Friday, July 11, 2008

Back in May, I posted "Drama Queen"; here's the latest information I have, regarding a recent sighting:

Drama Queens: An Altered Reality

Drama queens
More than I can count,
Like a flippin'
Flower fount,
Cross their path
And here's what's certain,
Collateral damage
You'll be hurtin'.

Drama queens
Are full of breath,
Because, I'm telling you
They can talk you to death,
Fussing and moaning
How they were slighted,
Talking trash
They get overexcited.

Drama queens
You know their song,
Where they are right
And you are wrong,
Wherever gathered
More than one,
Self-pity reigns
Till the setting sun.

Drama queens
Had me surrounded,
I was almost
Caught dumbfounded,
Their motives cloaked
Oh, they've been schooled,
Thank goodness
I'm not easily fooled.

Drama Queens asked
For my opinion,
As if I were a member
Of their dominion,
A smile here
A touch of the arm there,
With lightning leaping
From their hair;
Oh, I am lucky
I made an artful dodge,
Made my escape
Through the parking garage,
Lit my afterburners
On the freeway,
'Cuz with Drama Queens
There ain't no leeway.


"Don't kill the messenger", sez Peanut.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Some unfortunate souls, moan all the way to the pearly gates.

Moan and Groan

The end-stage heart failure moan
Is a sorrowful brand of groan,
It comes with each gasping breath
Only to find solace in death.

The family tries comfort
With pillows and hugs,
While nurses resort to
Their favorite drugs,
No relief to be found
It's a long, drawn-out course,
As if crushed by an elephant
And dragged by a horse.

Finally, the end-stage heart failure moan,
Fades away with the demise
Of the flesh and the bone.


Fade Away

Without extraordinary means

Or any crutch of support,

Take away the medicines and drugs

And there's not much to report,

Just the background substantiation

There is a human in this bed,

And when we take away the therapies

She soon will be dead.

By removing the devices

Of our technological violence,

The ticktock of the life-force

Will fade away into silence,

The heart ceases to beat

It can no longer stand alone,

Expect the last gasping breath

Like the fall of a stone.

As an extinguished candle

And the wisp of its' smoke,

The last, final flourish

Of the magicians cloak,

The end of a river

Spilling into the sea,

No longer bound by her existence

Fade away, and set free.


Friday, July 04, 2008

Just a random conversation this morning, sparked this silly story.


She had blisters, like her sisters

And they hurt like hell, she said,

She had others, like her brothers

But I'm glad, that I'm not dead.

It's such a bother, said her father

But, what is there to do,

Just give her water, said her daughter

That's the treatment, and it's new.

But there's a dozen, said her cousin

It's almost more, than she can bear,

She needs some fleece, proclaimed her niece

It's over there, upon the chair.

A poisonous plant, said her favorite aunt

Is the cause of sisters blister,

Ya, those are carbuncles, said her uncles

We hope that no-one here, has kissed her.

I did, said a kid

I thought that she was clean,

Screamed the crowd, so very loud

You have to be in quarantine!

Don't go wild, said the child

I am sorry for the breach,

It's outdated, to be separated

I'll just wash my lips with bleach.



Wednesday, July 02, 2008

For the first 24 years of my career, I worked night-shift, in places where the bath was done on day-shift, unless there was some sort of elimination debacle on my tour of duty. Now, having returned to my kind, I'm expected to take care of the bath during the night. Yeeks!

But maybe, just possibly, the following poem offers a solution, in the not-so-distant future. I can only dream.

The Last Bath

He'll do anything he can
To avoid giving a bath,
He says it's his destiny
His karma or path,
An oath, vow or promise
A word troth, a pledge,
Some ridiculous rigmarole
About an existential edge,
An invisible boundary
He dare not traverse,
Some voodoo mumbo-jumbo
About the mummy's last curse.

To you, me and most
It's a whacked out, phony reason,
And to most seasoned nurses
It amounts to bold treason,
To allow, or make exception
To the bacterial creed,
Why, it makes my blood boil
To consider this deed.

But he swears on Gideon's Bible
And Kismets Koran,
The Dead Sea scrolls
And some crazy mojo-hand,
He says his ancestral relatives
Passed down this decree,
A mummy's curse will engulf you
If you place water on me.

He states, he has the power
By virtue of a dispensation,
After a sacred, secret ceremony
And fermented condensation,
To annihilate organisms
Within his auric field,
It's futuristic technology
That only he can wield.

It's tough to argue with that
Because the germs are so small,
You need a flippin' microscope
To see them at all,
So, if he claims he zapped them
Who are we to disagree,
He ought to be rewarded
With a perpetual royalty,
For inventing or discovering
This time-saving action,
Heck, in five years or less
It will be the main attraction.

His last bath was recorded
In nineteen-ninety-four,
And if you bother to ask him
He'll say, “Man, what a chore,
That dude in my care
He weighed 82 stone*,
Bath-time was a production
You couldn't do it alone”,
I had to call reinforcements
From Atlas and Bekins,
14 moving assistants
And the last of the Mohican's.

That was the last straw
Of his bathing career,
With just a look at a bath basin
He was quaking in fear;
He was referred to Psychiatry
Counseling and more,
He was offered electro-shock
And downers galore,
But they wouldn't stop the baths
Claiming, nursing obligation,
Whereby, he took them to court
For undisclosed compensation.

A period of disability
Or leave, you might say,
Gave him time to ponder
All night and all day,
To hobnob with mystics
Soothsayers and freaks,
Until revelation arrived
In seventeen weeks.

He learned the science of the aura
The body-electric, some have said,
It leaves pretty quickly
Soon after you’re dead,
But while you’re still alive
If you can master the grip,
You can wield way more power
Than the average ego trip.

So, for the next couple years
He practiced the habit,
Starting out with rodents
And an occasional rabbit,
Soon cleansing their fur
At forty-two yards,
Yes, to eliminate baths……….
It was written in the cards.

He took his invention
To Boston Scientific,
The greatest minds there said
“Man, this is terrific”,
And they induced him to return
With money (and him cursing),
To revolutionize bathing
In the field of Nursing.


*The stone is a unit of mass.
It is equal to 14 Lbs and to 6.35029318 Kg.