Monday, November 23, 2015

"Take a right by the porta-potty, then a left after the second backhoe."

If you were to come to Casa Del Doghair, those would be the directions you'd get.

Every five years or so, Littleton's infrastructure guys decide it's time to replace the gas lines/sanitary sewers (that's how they refer to them: "sanitary sewers." I would hope there's no other kind)/water lines/electrical distribution system/various bits of asphalt in my neighborhood. This month, it's the sewer lines.

Do you have any idea how big sewer lines can be? I did not until this week. Apparently, replacing several thousand linear feet of sewer lines requires backhoes, something The Boyfiend calls a backtracker (on reflection, I think he made that up), a crane, and a whole shitload, pun intended, of disturbingly large plastic-and-metal tubes. These things are large enough to get lost in. And right now, five of them are piled up on what used to be my side yard.

So be careful if you come visit. Don't climb on the equipment. And for God's sake, don't cut that left after the second backhoe too close, or you'll end up ten feet underground in a big hole, with a bunch of men in orange vests staring down at you.

In non-sanitary-sewer-related news, nursing, both as a job and a concept, is eating my lunch. Mostly as a job. The concept of nursing is fine and dandy and I'm still all up in its metaphorical grill, but the practice? is leaving some tread marks across my back.

Part of it is the new residents we've got at the moment. We trade out residents more frequently than just once a year, so every four months or so, it's like July all over again. Not all of 'em leave, of course, but we get enough new post-grad-twos and threes to make things exciting. Here's an example:

SCENE: Interior, day, conference room. Six doctors are milling about, drinking coffee and PSLs and munching on PowerBars.

DOCTOR ONE: Okay, you guys. We have a full house today, so we've got to move somebody out of the unit. Who've we got that can go to the floor?

DOCTOR TWO: Um. . . .let's see. We have three TIAs that are stable and almost done with their workups. We have that patient with the left MCA stroke who's waiting on rehab placement, and the lady with the cerebellar stroke who needs a cardiology consult. Oh, and then we have that one guy with rhabdo, in status, with an insulin drip, who we're working up for DIC. He's four hundred pounds and in four-point restraints, too.

DOCTOR THREE: Sounds to me like we ought to move out the rhabdo.

DOCTOR ONE: Great idea. You write the orders and I'll let bed control know. Oh, and listen: be sure you write an order for strict ins and outs and put in the notes to nursing that they have to d/c that Foley immediately, okay? 

I'm spending Thanksgiving with the weirder half of The Boyfiend's family, in a prepper compound, with feral-hog hunting as part of the weekend's entertainment. At this point, I am looking forward to it.

And maybe, before I go back to work, I'll end up at the bottom of a deep hole under a backhoe with a bunch of men in orange vests staring down at me.

15 comments:

jimbo26 said...

Sounds interesting . ;-)

Anonymous said...

The other kind of sewer is "storm".

Silliyak said...

For the workers outside your abode, your poop,is their bread and butter.

bdaiss said...

Both of your stories here sound like a logistical nightmare.
(Psst - there are also storm sewers. What you really hope is your sanitary sewers don't overflow into your storm sewers...)

Have a fabulous holiday and I just wanted to say thank you for all you do both here keeping us entertained and in your professional capacity.

Elle said...

I feel half of your pain, having had to replace the sewer line from my house to the main this summer. Only difference is, it cost me about $8,000. I recommend demanding that the city put down sod on top of the trenches, once they are refilled. Otherwise, after the first rain, your dog is going to make the inside of your house look like the backyard.

Anonymous said...

Actually there is another kind besides "sanitary sewers" -- storm sewers. Sanitary sewers carry the waste from toilets, tubs, sinks, etc. to sewage treatment facilities. Storm sewers carry runoff from streets, parking lots, and so forth, usually flowing directly to a river or other body of water without any treatment. That's why people are warned not to pour used motor oil or similar pollutants into the gutter.

CrowsCalling said...

Oh dear...

yrsis said...

I looked up rhabdo. I really wish I could un-know that syndrome, but nope, it's stuck in my head like a 400-pound patient in four-point restraints.

HOW DO YOU DO YOUR JOB I ASK YOU HOW

Anonymous said...

How do you know when doctors are being complete morons? When I (non-nursing person) know they are suggesting a very. bad. thing. Geez.

RehabNurse said...

Oh my! You got s^&t at home AND at work.

Personally, as an escaped floor nurse, that doc who told the other one to write those insane orders should be soundly flogged.

Pulling a Foley on someone like that who is non-ambulatory with rhabdo (I'm guessing here) is criminal and a never event (pick your favorite one) waiting to happen.

Biju said...

Man. It's interesting. You have differently explained the conversations of Doctors. And you have the fact man.

Nursing College Australia said...

OMG its absolutely right... i am a nurse too and i know what it feels

woolywoman said...

You know, I got sick and went on disability ( thanks crazy back killing patient) a little while ago, and the longer I'm away from it the more I dread going back. I really thought I liked it, too, and was a pretty darn good nurse. But never having to cry in my car before driving home, never having to fight with bed control, and never having to explain to a resident why his cool idea is breath taking lyrics horrible has really changed my life for the better. It's quite a conundrum.

Elle said...

Have you been buried by a backhoe in the backyard? Your minions miss you!

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