Friday, February 26, 2016


Addressed to the youngsters and new Nurses out there, trying to fit into the battlefield of your fresh, and exciting career. Understand, that bullying happens at all spectrums, not just at the beginning. Bullying and Hazing are the power plays perpetrated by persons who feel weak and threatened. If it is too aggressive and persistent, then be a whistle-blower. Otherwise, you can do your best, to be the best, and those suckers will be trampled and wasted.

Please don't be offended
If I offend,
You were bullying me
No, let's not pretend,
The practice of hazing
Never loses its appeal,
You have shown your true colors
And earned the brown seal.

You can call me a mercenary
Yep, I'm the hired gun,
Someone high above you
Decided to give it a run,
And new ideas can threaten
The current status quo,
I sense your hostility
But I'm bulletproof, bro.

"Why didn't you do this?"
Well, babe, you didn't ask,
We mercenary types
Love to be given a task,
I'll show you my skills
You'll see nothing was missed,
But if I show initiative
You'll probably be pissed........
You're the type that would complain
"I never told you to do that"
You can't have it both ways
Now you wear the brown hat.

Each time that I work with you
I will practice my best,
And I will remember
That you failed the first test.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016


Some people have extremely persistent and recurrent Atrial Fibrillation. They might have undergone several Ablation procedures, and may require prescribed antiarrhythmic medications, and still they go back into A. Fib. It is surely a drag (and expensive, I assure you). That's when we pull out the big gun in the arsenal; Ibutilide. It is a complex, and possibly dangerous option, as it is known to cause Ventricular Tachycardia at times (or worse). Typically, the patient's Potassium and Magnesium levels will be measured (and supplemented if necessary). After the IV administration of the drug, we hope to see spontaneous conversion to Sinus Rhythm, or possibly they have just been properly primed for Electrical Synchronized Cardioversion. Whatever the case may be, they will always be monitored for 4 hours, after the administration of that drug.

I haven't tried,
Nor have I tasted
A shot of those
And a 4 hour viewing,
If electrolytes are off
V.Tach may be brewing.

First, a few PVC's
And then bang, it's V. Tach,
If you can't cough out of it
We go ahead and shock you back,
But who wants to do that
Maybe only Hellboy,
Lucifers spawn
Disguised as the Bellboy.

Sometimes Ibutilide
Works just like magic,
Converting your A. Fib
Avoiding outcomes more tragic;
And that's why we watch you
For a standard four hours,
So we can meet at the Limelight
And toast, whiskey sours.


Budget Poison

Sprayed with Mace

To clarify
My biggest reasons,
Why I left
The largest treasons,
The short shrift shift
The demand and the stress,
And the daily reminders
Of the budget mess.

They should know better,
What's more important?
Than a happy client letter,
'Tis the morale of their staff
How they feel treated,
If you don't honor them
They will feel cheated.

And rightly so
Because employees do the work,
Better than a teenager
Fountain soda clerk,
But if you treat them the same
And toss them off the ship,
They will leave you in droves
My advice: Take this tip.

Four and half years
I heard about billing hours,
It was never my responsibility
To schedule or pick the flowers,
That would grace tomorrow's table
It is the nature of our biz,
Not to know, if the next day workload
Would be colossal or just a whizz.

Don't take it out on the employees
Just stop buying stupid shit,
Two-thousand dollar, lock-wires
That's the least of it,
When you could have gone to Home Depot
Bought zipties; cost a buck,
Your fancy wire holders
Surely, they will suck.

Every week I heard about
Billing hours are too short,
Close to 700 days
I am sorry to report,
The duration of my employment
Four years, it's too bad,
I did the work of many
A virtual Galahad.

The Holy Grail is missing
At Sister Euphemia's place,
When they talk about the budget
'Twas like spraying us with mace.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Happiness is............

A new position, returning to a prior hospital. This seems to be repetitive theme in my life, where I work at certain hospitals a couple of times, on different occasions, with a different job description. If you had a look at my career resume, you'd see what I mean.

Anyway, I just finished the final night of my current job, before I begin the new job in two days. I'm leaving the old job because of the way the Unit is managed, and how it is perpetually understaffed, during the final 6 hours of the day. In general, it has become too stressful to me, and I find myself angry every day that I work. So, why should I think that my last day at work, should be a walk in the Rose Garden? Well, I'm not that stupid, and sure enough, the during the final 5 hours, I experienced a major lashing.

Last night at work
And I was abused,
Visitors and family
Shoulda been excused,
Instead, they attacked
With vim and with vigor,
Almost blew my cool
And pulled the trigger.

Betty Lou had
A rabid relation,
Standing up for her
Like a Nazi invasion,
Attacking whoever
Entered their space,
Demanding name, rank and number
From every new face.

Rabid Roxanne
Said her name was Suzi,
She spoke to everyone
Like she was shooting an Uzi,
As if every each one of us
Was in some Cabal,
With verbal vehemence
She was begging a brawl.

Then there was Margaret
She fell yesterday morning,
Perhaps, it was an omen
A heart attack warning,
That prompted Emergency
To send her to us,
A Cardiac Alert
Creates a lot of fuss.

Her family was hungry
Exhausted and tired,
Fourth time for a bedpan
When my minutes expired,
And I had to settle Buster
After a general anesthetic,
The son went berserk
Saying, "Your bedside manner is pathetic".

He was ranting and raving
As I walked away,
After Rabid Roxanne
He might just "make my day",
As I pondered my inner
Dirty Harry, impression,
It's my last night at work
What's with all this aggression?

Finally, Betty Lou went home
And Margaret, got a bed,
And I went home to Merlot
To settle my head.


Sunday, February 07, 2016


A dismal outlook in the nursing paradigm.

I applied
For another position,
I'm just a Nurse
And not a Physician,
But one might think
I'm a valued C-E-O,
Cuz the folks where I work
Don't want to let me go.

Come on, there's a million
Nurses, just like me,
Willing to be abused
For the same, almost free,
They have graduated
Are desperate for a job,
They don't care about a watch
With a matching fob.

Oh, the market is strange
In the Healthcare dominion,
This isn't like Law School
And someone's opinion,
Just hire a warm body
Then, throw it on the pile,
If they survive....?
Let them stay for awhile.

You have to kill someone
Four times ten,
To get any attention
And even then,
No one gives a hoot
If they're dead or alive,
You're still guaranteed a job
If you'll come to work at five.

Time to Go

Charge nurse comes to me several times yesterday and says, "Joe Bob, please don't go" (in response to the fact I had the gall to go out and find another job). Suddenly, they pretend to play nice. They say, I could just work 8 hours, would that be less stressful?

Later that day, as we are leaving at 12.75 hours on the shift, and I'm reflecting on the documentation I skipped from 7 hours ago (finally taking care of it would have cost another hour of overtime). Frankly, I'm just too damn tired to do it, and we both want to go home; I say to myself, "Quitting is healthy".

Another nurse said, "Joe Bob, you have options because of your ICU background". Well frankly, I have options, because I made a point of keeping myself current, and educated for 30 years in my field of expertise.

9 Recoveries, 5 Discharges, 3 invasive catheter removals amounting to 1.5 hours of at the bedside time, providing meals and water and fluffing, plus all day educational teaching, plus my own and others necessary break-time, and all of the side consulting like helping other nurses and doctors, and jam all of that into 12 hours.................and try to fit in the necessary legal and prudent documentation?

The other two nurses I worked with had the same experience. We're all burned out, but I'm leaving.

Because, it's time to go.

Thursday, February 04, 2016

Job Fight

I applied for a job..........and they are fighting to keep me.

Sure, I'm angry
Listen, why not?
They say I can't leave
Cuz I'm too hot,
The guy who solves
The toughest of tests,
I can't help it
They think I'm the best.

Really, I'm not
I have limitations,
I have a ringing sound
In my eustachians,
It is always there
It might make me crazy,
But they know my secret
I'm not lazy.

I work harder than most
That's just what I do,
I can't help it
If I'm better than you,
I busted my brain
To get where I'm at,
I'm a non-meatarian
Without any fat.

I'm older than most
Of the other Nurses,
Which means I've endured
The brunt of all curses,
Levelled and fired
Bad aim or lucky,
Why I'm still standing?
Ask the Donners in Truckee.

Don't Blame the Dogs

I'll tell you all about my changing jobs another day; now, I have to review another batch of stupid humans. The other day, we had a transfer from an outside hospital. The gentleman had the looks of a recent heart attack, and he came to us for Cardiac Cath and possible PCI. He had the usual comorbidities, so maybe he really did need to have a pow-wow with Fi-Fi the poodle mix-something dog. What do I know?.........I'm just the Nurse specialist keeping an eye on Bob.

Stupid humans
Don't blame the dogs,
Other kinds of pets?
Let's say,
Aardvarks and hogs,
Would ya bring 'em to the hospital
Draped on your arm,
Why the Hell not
If they don't do any harm.

C'mon, don't be a jackass
Please leave them in the car,
As a Nurse, I have to wonder
Is your brain smothered in tar,
From whatever you're smoking
But no, this is the West Coast...
Where any damned kind of animal
Is like a slice of white toast.

Take them to the hospital
Carry'em to church,
On your lap in the car
In the name of research,
Say, they are a companion
They assist you in life,
You're divorced 3 times
Fi-Fi is better than a wife.

Why shouldn't it be Ok?
Fi-Fi keeps clean,
She licks her private parts
Kisses my face, see what I mean?
And I don't get sick
So why should your babies,
If Fi-Fi tries to lick them
Fer sure, they won't get rabies.

So, don't take offense
When I call Security,
When your frickin friendly ferret
Offends my sense of purity,
When I have no idea
What viruses he has colonized,
My patient with Lymphoma
Surely has been compromised.

I just can't get over it
But I won't blame the pet,
It's the owner with a pea brain
They are clearly the threat.