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Mother Of Pizzas

, , , , , , | Right | February 23, 2022

My daughter was delivering a pizza and noticed a bumper sticker on the owner’s car that read “Mother of Dragons.” My daughter decided to be clever when the lady answered the door.

Daughter: “Valar Morghullis.”

The lady turned red and started laughing in response. Later, when my daughter told me this, I asked:

Me: “What? No ‘Valar dohaeris’ in reply?”

Daughter: “No. I wished she did… but I did get a very good tip.”

Congratulations On The (Frustrating, Long-Awaited) All-Clear!

, , , , , , , | Healthy | February 4, 2022

Some years ago, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I went through all the treatment, surgeries, chemo, you name it. A couple of years later, at the three-month follow-up, my oncologist, upon consultation, didn’t like that he could feel some lumps under my arm, so he put in a request for a PET scan.

A PET scan is an imaging test where you are given a slightly radioactive glucose IV shot, wait an hour, and then go through a machine. Cancer being sugar-avid, if there is any tumor, it will light up on the screen.

My insurance denied the request because I didn’t have a CT scan done that would warrant the need for a PET scan; PET scans are more expensive than CT scans.

The oncologist then put in a request for a CT scan.

The insurance denied it because I didn’t have an MRI scan done that would warrant the need for a CT scan, CT scans being more expensive than MRI scans.

Then, my oncologist put in a request for an MRI scan.

The insurance promptly denied that because I didn’t have an XRay done that would warrant the need for an MRI scan.

And this is how I ended up having an XRay, an MRI scan, a CT scan, and a PET scan because insurance wanted to save the money for the PET scan. I got subjected to way more radiation than necessary for them to pay five times the cost they wanted to save.

It was negative. Years later, I am still cancer-free.

Good Old-Fashioned Bigotry: Unplugged

, , , , , , | Working | January 28, 2022

The title of my job is a very long and ambiguous title that really means “trainer,” but instead, lately, I’ve been doing tech support. The actual tech support/IT guy is constantly gone, comes in late, or leaves early, mainly because he is supposed to be working from home but comes in to fix certain things.

Most of my knowledge comes from Googling things and watching YouTube until I figure it out. Since I have somehow taken over the “small” tech support things, everyone on the sales floor emails me when they have a problem. And usually, since no one has told me not to, I teach them how to fix it on their own if I can. I mean, I’m not getting paid more to do the tech’s job, so I might as well help out. 

Most of the sales staff are a younger generation, so they understand what might be wrong and fix it themselves. However, there are the “self-made” old-school ones who don’t believe that women should know anything about technology, and that’s where the problem comes in.

One of the older sales guys stops me as I’m coming into work. I literally have my hands full and he snaps his fingers at me while sitting at his desk. I used to wait tables, so I have no problem ignoring this. I go to my office and he storms over to me.

Sales Guy #1: “You need to call the tech guy.”

Me: “What’s the problem?”

Sales Guy #1: “You need to call the guy to come to fix my computer.”

Me: “I can try to see if I can get it fixed for you. What is the issue you are having?”

Sales Guy #1: “Listen, sweetie, it’s not that difficult. Use that thing there—” *pointing to the phone* “—that’s called a phone, and call up the tech guy to come and fix my computer. I won’t say it again.”

Me: “Then it won’t get fixed.”

He sputters and finally leaves. 

One of the other sales guys pops his head into my office.

Sales Guy #2: “So, did [Sales Guy #1] tell you what he needed?

Me: “Yeah: to call the ‘tech guy’.”

Sales Guy #2: “He literally unplugged his modem. We’ve all tried to help him but were told we ‘weren’t qualified’. So, what are you going to do?”

Me: “Well, I’m going to do what we are supposed to and send in a ticket, because he wouldn’t tell me the problem. I think the wait times are like three weeks now?”

Sure enough, it took nearly three weeks for our IT guy to get to [Sales Guy #1]’s query and come out and fix it. It would have been fixed sooner, but since I wasn’t “qualified,” I didn’t want to give someone the wrong idea. It was worth it, though, to see the old guy nearly purple-faced about the loose cord.

Tomorrow Comes Twice

, , , , | Right | January 12, 2022

I am playing cards with some friends when one of them, a cabbie by profession, gets a phone call. In the silence of the small room, we can hear both sides.

Caller: “Interpreted call for [Rider].”

Friend: “Go ahead.”

Caller: “She needs to be driven to a few locations at 2:00 pm tomorrow.”

Friend: “I’m sorry, I can’t. I am already booked tomorrow at 2:00 pm.”

Caller: “Why not?”

There are some funny looks and quiet laughs from the rest of us.

Friend: “Because… I have other clients?”

Caller: “How about the fourteenth at 2:00 pm?”

Friend: “Okay… Wait! Tomorrow is the fourteenth!”

There Is Nothing Like A Nurse

, , , , , , , | Healthy | December 20, 2021

I’m a generally agreeable person but I can tell you that hospital visits generally put people a bit on their bad side. I’m actually amazed at the patience of the nurses and other personnel. I’m writing this during my second trip to the hospital via ER in three weeks.

The first time, I called 911 at 1:00 AM and then called my daughter to lock up my house and take care of my dog. The last thing I remember was blacking out in the ambulance. I was given Propofol, a sedative, and only remember some brief discussion and cutting off my shirt.

I woke about thirty-six hours later, a little disoriented, of course. I had pneumonia. A nurse gave some instructions. Then, a short bit later, another nurse came in to do something… nursey… and then she looked over why I’m there.

Nurse #1: “Oh, you’re the guy!”

Me: “I’m what guy?”

Nurse #1: “Well, I heard there was someone on this side of the ICU that ripped out of his restraints and removed his own breathing tube. Nobody’s ever done that before.”

Me: “I did?”

Nurse #1: “Yes. Apparently, you were ranting about being kidnapped. A doctor talked you down and you passed out again.”

A few days later, I did notice bruises on my hands that had to be caused by my Hulk routine. Over the next few days, though, I found nurses coming to my room and lingering. This seemed strange to me. Then, some nurse trainee (who was probably older than eighteen but looked sixteen or seventeen) was introduced to me. The other nurse left but she stuck around. We made a little small talk, and then I paused so she had the chance to go do her duties.

Trainee: “Can I stay here?”

Me: “Well, I guess. Don’t you have things to do?”

Trainee: “No. They don’t really give me much to do. I’m bored. Can I stay and talk?”

I figured, “Why not?” We chatted a while until she realized she couldn’t stay much longer. She bounced out of the room and down the hallway with a happy goodbye and more energy than I think I could ever muster in my entire life. Next day, one of the senior nurses was in my room and clearly not leaving and talking to me about… whatever.

Me: “Is it slow today?”

Nurse #2: “Yeah, it’s a bit slower than normal for some reason.”

Me: *After a pause* “Are you hiding?”

Nurse #2: *Blushing slightly* “Yes.”

Hospital visit number two, my daughter took me herself through the ER. My breathing capacity was probably a sixth of normal and I was suffering. But I simply cannot let go of my sense of humor.

Nurse #3: *Cheerfully* “How are you tonight?”

Me: “Is that the best question to ask someone in the E.R?”

Nurse #3: “Well, since you put it that way, I guess not.”

Me: “You realize I’m teasing you? It’s a good question. But to answer it properly, I can barely breathe. Otherwise, most of the rest of me is intact.”

I got my comeuppance. The next morning, a nurse come to do something else nursey. Everyone was in masks, so I didn’t recognize her at first.

Nurse #3: “Hi. I’d ask how you’re doing, but someone last night told me I shouldn’t do that.”

When I realized who it was I blushed and laughed. I should mention that the staff at the hospital are all remarkably friendly and wonderful.

Finally, today, I was talking with my nurse. It’s clear I only need one more night here to work with a CPAP machine.

Me: “I think I’m being released tomorrow.”

Nurse #4: “I hope not. I hope you’re here through Monday.”

I was thinking to myself, “Does he really think I need that much treatment? Do they want more money?” So, I just asked:

Me: “Why is that?”

Nurse #4: “You’re an easy patient.”

At that point, through the walls, we heard the terrible wailing of another patient.

Me: “Great. So to get out of here earlier, I just have to be cranky?”

They are all great people… BUT I WANNA GO HOME!