Friday, July 13, 2007

Head Nurse: The Lazar-House Edition

Take One Tablet Daily. May Cause Dizziness.

It's been wet here lately.

Wet and warm. And things are blooming. And beginning to mildew and mold.

Things are, in fact, so bad that condensation is beginning to form on the air-conditioner ducts in the ceilings of the hospital. That condensation drips on to the ceiling tiles and makes everybody panic, thinking there's an undiscovered leak somewhere. Which is a possibility, as bits of the hospital roof keep getting blown off or washed away by storms.

The immediate effect of all of this is that everyone is sick. We're used to living in a desert this time of year, so the effect of a decent climate sends us all for a collective loop. As you walk down the hallway in our unit, you can hear burbling coughs, the honking of noses being blown, and the sound of the percussion devices that Respiratory uses for pneumonia patients.

And that's just the nurses.

The patients, poor things, are in even worse shape. Bad enough you should have a meningioma or a herniated disk that needs repair--imagine having a condition like that in combination with a chesty cold or a zinging sinus infection. One poor woman came in with such a bad case of sinusitis that we just kept her on a morphine PCA for a week. ENT was finally able to drain her posterior sinuses after she'd healed sufficiently from her meningioma removal.

All we need is for the lights to go out for a while so we can get some nice pitch torches. That and a few rags and a couple of clappers to knock together would set us all up as a group for crying "Unclean! Unclean!"

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Extreme Whateverover

In Head Nurse House News, do you have any idea how much it costs to rewire a relatively small house?

A lot, that's how much. As in, somewhere north of a good pair of Manolos, yet south of a drawer full of mink. However, it has to be done, given that the electrician suggested I sleep with a fire extinguisher if I didn't want to replace the breaker box.

I've got the dining room mostly painted (this was before I was felled by the same Creeping Crud that's infected my coworkers) in a pleasant pinkish white above the chair rail and an extremely estrogenic rose color below. I'm now having pleasant dreams that involve inveigling good-natured friends into painting the woodwork while I scrub other walls. When it's done, I'll hang bottle-green velvet curtains over the window with a net curtain underneath. This will be, when it's done, a dining room that Lily Allen would be happy to eat in, foofy skirts and all.

The Foundation Guy is supposed to call me on Monday to set up a time to get under the foundation and add joists, replace joists, build new piers, and generally get things back to plumb as much as possible. I'm on call for the Plumbing Elves so that they can run new piping into what used to be a garage for the washer and dryer. With any luck they'll all show up at the same time, and my new refrigerator will be delivered, so I'll find a nicely rewired, replumbed, releveled house with the fridge already set up and plugged in.

And then Lily Allen will come to dinner.

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