Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Styling the bedroom? Ain't nobody got time for that!

If you've been reading this blog for a while, you'll know that I've become addicted to renovation/decorating/house blogs.

It's a shameful thing.

It's a shameful thing because, to be honest, my addiction (which started when I bought this house, seven or so years ago) has resulted in nothing except my painting every wall in the house white. Well, and putting up those two-inch-wide, faux-wood blinds that JCPenney sells because I was sick of uncleanable Roman shades. Did that today. Lost some patience, some years of my life, and not a little bit of blood.

Somehow, despite being glued to Anna's and Daniel and Max's escapades, and reading Chezerbey with the sort of dedication I usually reserve for science fiction, I have missed all the finer points of design.

Dudes, I Used Pelican Tile In The Bathroom. In my defense, subway tile was still too expensive for my budget at the time, and I was under a huge time constraint, as a house functions best with a working bathroom. Still, I look at those squares of tile and kick myself every time I pee.

And, worst of all, I'm ashamed. My bedroom's been described as "stark"--as in, all-white, no frills, no tchotchkes sitting on things, and very few things for tchotchkes to sit on. The living room is mostly neat, with several bookshelves, but I spend most of my time keeping the dog-hair and cat-hair under control, not working out vignettes with the Thai dragon Dad got me years ago.

I'm a good cook. I'm fantastic at makeup. I can dress myself with only a minor amount of trouble. I can refill the windshield-washer-thingy in my car with no problem. I make gorgeous compost. I can handle power tools without losing digits, and my solder doesn't drip. I'm not the worst nurse you ever worked with. But I cannot for the life of me decorate.

I was excited when The Boyfiend told me he was bringing his Schlitz chandelier. (Which has since been lost, but I'll go into that tragedy later if ever.)

Tomorrow I'm going to IKEA. I'm going to buy curtains, following Dana's advice and getting the longer ones, and I'm going to put them up. I'm going to put them up, moreover, on the nifty bendy curtain rods I got a million years ago from West Elm. It's going to be fabulous.

Aaaaand they will make the rest of the bedroom look skanky and as if it needs to be repainted, which it does, but dammit, who has time for that when there are tomatoes to grow?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


Gracious. Has it been nearly a month?

There's been a lot going on.


Not only do I have a new boss, I have a *fantastic* new boss. The honeymoon period is long over; I've worked with this person in a boss-capacity for going on two years now.

This boss, unlike the last boss, does not say things like "All vasoactive drugs are the same" and "I don't see why you're worried about your skills; you're a critical-care-trained nurse, right?" and "*I* had to work a whole twelve hours twice this week, so why can't *you* come in for a couple of extra shifts?"

All of which are verbatim from Old Boss's mouth.

New Boss says things like, "I'm expected at neuro rounds in ten minutes" (OB never managed to make a single round) and "No matter what happens, your unit will be taken care of" and "I don't know much about the brain, so I'm taking three classes in the next month to get up to speed."

NB also says things like, "It sounds to me like you guys aren't getting what you need in terms of support. What are your top three priorities, and how can I make those things happen?"

Also taken verbatim from New Boss's mouth.

I can't go in to too much detail right now, because every time I think about how my charts are being audited by somebody who actually cares, or my unit is being staffed by somebody who has actually worked as a nurse in a critical-care unit for more than nine months and who, moreoever, still does work in a critical-care unit to keep their skills fresh, I get all giddy and I can't type.

Everybody is happy about this: from speech pathology to physical therapy to the housekeeping staff, everybody's happy.


His name is Mongo, after the "Blazing Saddles" character.

Mongo likes snuggles, and kitties (and the cats love him), and playing catch, and carrying his stuffed toys around, and climbing up on top of me when there's a thunderstorm, and going for car rides, and generally being a capital-D Dog.

He's a golden retriever with separation anxiety. If he can't see me, but he knows I'm around, he flips out. I've asked the neighbors, and he hasn't been an asshole when I leave for work, so, good. We had a thunderstorm the other day when I wasn't here, and Mongo went calmly into his doghouse (evidence: he wasn't wet when I got home) and hung out.

His old human had to move and couldn't keep him. He's a year old. I never thought I'd have anything other than a shepherd or LSG or northern breed, but that was before I met Mongo-Man. He's the sweetest, lovingest dog I've ever met, even if he does bark when I mow the lawn. It took the cats about twenty-four hours to warm up to him; after that, I found them all three playing on the rug in the living room. Mongo was on his back with Flashes on his chest, biting his neck, and Notamus was playing with Mongo's tail.

Mongo is behind my chair right now, snoring.

And yes, he came with the name. It is appropriate.

No pictures yet because I can't get him to slow down long enough to take a snapshot.

ANNOUNCEMENT NUMBER THREE: Consolidated Research & Healthcare Corp, holding company of Sunnydale General, has done the dumbest thing EVER.

For years now, we've had color-coded scrubs according to discipline. The head of CRHC decided to drag us boldly into the 1970's, and has mandated that we all--from nursing to PT to housekeeping--will wear dark blue scrubs, the sort of blue you see in the cheaper catalog pages. Not only that, but they'll be embroidered (and thus un-returnable, in case they don't fit) and available only from one company.

I got mine today. They're cheap as fuck. As dark as they are, you wouldn't expect that a nude bra would show through them, but boy-hidey if it doesn't. They're available in two fabrics: Horrible Polyester and Slightly Less-Horrible But More Transparent Cotton-Poly. Other people, who got theirs earlier, have reported such things as the back seams on the pants ripping as they were put on or the shoulder seams ripping under the slightest stress. I can see why.

My only question is who's making money off this. Somebody somewhere has to be getting a cut of Sunnydale's employees' business.

Never mind that our patients, let alone our staff, had come to rely on color-coding to tell who was who. It's a nice thing, to be able to look up in the middle of a code and see maroon scrubs and know that RT has arrived. Those days are gone; now we'll have six-by-three inch plastic hangtags behind our IDs that state our discipline.

Of course, a fair number of my patients can no longer read, and depended on scrub color to tell what was going on.

I'd happily eat the cost of these scrubs if The Powers That Be came back and said, "Wait, never mind, bad idea," but I don't think that's gonna happen.

So I'll just go off and rub some MongoBelly. He loves that.