Tag Archives: injury

Fast Food: Detained, Strip Searched, Sodomized

16 Apr

EnronAll from phone instructions of a person claiming to be a police officer or upper management. Enron 2 It sounds crazy, but I remember taking Social Psychology for extra credits in the summer and people will do strange things.  For instance, whe group mentality drives people to shout “jump” to a suicidal person on a ledge.  Or how the ethos at Enron let them perpetrate such obvious crimes.  Humans are wired in certain ways, and it can have very scary consequences.






Here’s what happened from http://www.courier-journal.com/article/20051009/NEWS01/510090392/A-hoax-most-cruel-Caller-coaxed-McDonald-s-managers-into-strip-searching-worker:

She was a high school senior who had just turned 18 — a churchgoing former Girl Scout who hadn’t received a single admonition in her four months working at the McDonald’s in Mount Washington.  But when a man who called himself “Officer Scott” called the store on April 9, 2004, and said an employee had been accused of stealing a purse, Louise Ogborn became the suspect.  Summers said “Officer Scott” in Mount Washington knew the color of Ogborn’s hair, as well as her height and weight — about 90 pounds. He even described the tie she was wearing.  Summers, 51, conceded later that she had never known Ogborn to do a thing dishonest. But she nonetheless led Ogborn to the restaurant’s small office, locked the door, and — following the caller’s instructions — ordered her to remove one item of clothing at a time, until she was naked.

By the time the caller telephoned the company-owned McDonald’s in Mount Washington in April 2004, supervisors had been duped in at least 68 stores in 32 states, including Kentucky and Indiana. The targets included a dozen different restaurant chains.  Managers of at least 17 McDonald’s stores around the nation had been conned by that time, and the company already was defending itself in at least four lawsuits stemming from such hoaxes.  Some of the strip-searches weren’t even reported to police, because embarrassed restaurant officials were reluctant to publicize them, said Jablonski, the ex-FBI agent. The fiercely competitive chains also initially were reluctant to talk to each other. “For a variety of reasons, they were slow on the draw,” he said.

By now, Ogborn had been detained for an hour. Her car keys had been taken away, and she was naked, except for the apron. She would later testify that she thought she couldn’t leave.  “I was scared because they were a higher authority to me,” she said. “I was scared for my own safety because I thought I was in trouble with the law.”

He pulled the apron away from Ogborn, leaving her nude again, and described her to the caller. He ordered her to dance with her arms above her head, to see, the caller said, if anything “would shake out.” He made her do jumping jacks, deep knee bends, stand on a swivel chair, then a desk.  He made her sit on his lap and kiss him; the caller said that would allow Nix to smell anything that might be on her breath.  When Ogborn refused to obey the caller’s instructions, Nix slapped her on the buttocks, until they were red — just as the caller told him to do, Ogborn testified later.  Louise Ogborn had been in the back office for nearly 2½ hours when the caller said she should kneel on the brick floor in front of Nix and unbuckle his pants.Ogborn cried and begged Nix to stop, she recounted in her deposition. “I said, `No! I didn’t do anything wrong. This is ridiculous.”  But she said Nix told her he would hit her if she didn’t sodomize him, so she did.

Like the rest of her ordeal, it was captured on a surveillance camera, recorded on to a DVD. And it continued until Summers returned to the office to get some gift certificates, and Nix had Ogborn cover herself again.

And finally, she realized the same. She called her manager — Lisa Siddons — whom the caller had said was on the other line. Summers discovered Siddons had been home, sleeping.  “I knew then I had been had,” Summers said. “I lost it.  “I begged Louise for forgiveness. I was almost hysterical.”  Summers watched the store video later the same night, saw what Nix had done, and called off their engagement. She hasn’t spoken with him since, according to her attorney.  She initially was suspended, then later fired, for violating a McDonald’s rule barring nonemployees from entering the office. A couple of weeks later, she was indicted on a charge of unlawful imprisonment, a misdemeanor. Nix was indicted on charges of sodomy and assault.

Many police departments filed their case away under “miscellaneous” because they couldn’t figure out how to pursue the caller, Prewitt said, or had trouble figuring out what crime, if any, he had committed.  Several departments were able to trace the calls to phone booths in Panama City, Fla. But that was as far as any had gotten until the Mount Washington hoax.  He eventually learned the call had originated in Panama City, and that the largest seller of phone cards there was Wal-Mart. But that didn’t help much — the largest seller of everything is Wal-Mart, and it has three stores in Panama City alone.

The camera at that store was trained on the registers, and it showed the purchaser was a white man, about 35 to 40, with slicked-back black hair and glasses. The same man could be seen on Flaherty’s video entering the other Wal-Mart, where he was wearing a black jacket with small white lettering.  Flaherty and a colleague flew to Panama City on June 28, 2004, and local officers immediately identified the jacket as the uniform worn by officers of Corrections Corp.of America, a private prison company.  When they showed it to the warden at the company’s Bay Correctional Facility, he identified the man as David R. Stewart, 38, a guard on the swing shift.  Stewart denied making the calls, but when confronted, he started to “sweat profusely and shake uncontrollably,” Flaherty wrote in a report. Stewart also asked, “Was anybody hurt?” and said, “Amen, it’s over,” according to the report.

Stewart eventually was brought to Bullitt Circuit Court, where he pleaded not guilty to solicitation to commit sodomy and impersonating a police officer, both felonies, as well as soliciting sex abuse and unlawful imprisonment, both misdemeanors. He was released on $100,000 bond pending his trial Dec. 13. His bond was posted by his brother, C.W. Stewart — a retired police officer from Cheektowaga, N.Y.  Detectives in other jurisdictions say they didn’t press charges because the caller’s crime would be a misdemeanor for which he could not be extradited.

Across the United States, at least 13 people who executed strip-searches ordered by the caller were charged with crimes, and seven were convicted.  But most of the duped managers were treated as victims — just like the people they searched and humiliated.  Many of the supervisors were fired and some divorced by their spouses, Annunziata said. Others required counseling.  But the duped managers have been condemned by others.

McDonald’s blamed what happened on Stewart and Nix, over whom it says it had no control. The company has sued both of them.  In court papers, McDonald’s also has blamed Ogborn for what happened to her — saying that her injuries, “if any,” were caused by her failure to realize the caller wasn’t a real police officer.  Questioning Ogborn during a deposition, Patterson suggested that although she had no clothes, she could have walked out of the office, but stayed voluntarily to clear her name.  “Did it ever occur to you to scream?” he asked.  Her therapist said she followed orders because her experience with adults “has been to do what she is told, because good girls do what they are told.”

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Snowboard to Backboard

23 Jan

This is more the bipolar part of the story, then the finale of a snowboard injury.  The whole episode was really caused from mental illness/medication stuff, not actual injury.

We got to emergency after another hour–and in that hour I got more and more exasperated.  My Sunday study time was gone, work preparation time taken away, and my relaxation time now impossible.  I could also see our financial resources disappearing with each medical act. At that point, I didn’t have any sympathy for Cool, because I was certain the ambulance and emergency were unwarranted.

I have cut out the meat of our discussion (which I had detailed at first) because it just made us look bad.  I’m OK with sharing what may be construed as unfeeling, unsympathetic quotes from myself.  I’m not ashamed, and I stand by them.  But I don’t want you to think Cool is some sort of loser, crazy, or $hithead.  It’s not that way–there are just extra considerations when working with a mentally ill person.  She thinks and reacts differently then most people.  And so some of our relationship is me trying to explain why it’s sometimes impractical or detrimental to her or US.  But to you–it would just seem lop-sided and portray us in a certain light that I do not intend.  So I just skipped it and sort of jumped into the next paragraph.

It seems mean way to be, but you have to understand–I suffer the consequences too. We are always dealing with bipolar issues, anxiety, irritability, medications, responsibility, extreme situations because of highs and lows. All the time.  I want to convey that day in day out with a person with mental illness requires patience, constant monitoring, coaching, vigilance. And that can get tiring–who wouldn’t be exasperated when things like this spiral all the way out of control? I guess that’s just part of mental illness. And I hardly ever think of Cool as a mentally ill person, she’s just Cool to me. My mate, and I love her. But the anxiety/bipolar does have an impact.

And it was difficult for Cool to SEE how this happened or take any responsibility in the matter.  Which is frustrating.  She told me, the doc at the ski hospital tricked her by saying I had agreed to the ambulance–which I never had–so she hadn’t fussed and refused treatment.  Reactions need to be much different next time, and we formulated a plan to avoid THIS.

Cool gave her pain as a 5 and took some pain relief. She was taken to x-ray for a long time. An hour after the initial pain score, Cool said her pain was still at 5–unchanged. Her wrist had recovered–because it had only ever been normal fall discomfort. The PA came in–x rays were completely normal. Cool was fine. She was cheering for football the next hour. In the morning when I asked how she felt and she said her. . . HEELS hurt. Not even part of the big emergency injury–but that’s Cool for you. Welcome to MY life.

I AM happy that Cool is still going to snowboard. She will get back on the horse, so at least our non-refundable EZ-123 package won’t be wasted. And we practiced what she would say next time she took a fall: Are you OK, are you hurt?! Cool says, “I just need a minute.” And she sits on the sidelines, gives me a hand signal, then together we can assess if she’s just being a wuss or if she’s actual-hurt. And if she is, I’ll drive us home where we will decide if the injury needs IBU and ice or if we need to involve diagnostics and doctors. Things will go better this weekend!

Arapahoe--rooster tails


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Things. . . Snowballed

22 Jan

I’m so funny–did you SEE that pun?!  But Sunday, I wasn’t really laughing.

thumbs up posterCool found an article about an EZ-123 pass in the area.  Four different ski resorts were participating and you could choose the one you wanted.  They offered, 3 lessons, WITH rental of all equipment (board, boots, bindings, goggles, helmet), and 3 lift tickets good for the whole day for just $79!  I thought that was a steal, considering the times I went snowboarding at the Tahoe resorts were in April (post-season, when snow wasn’t optimal) when lift tickets were discounted.  And lessons–forget it!  Unless you were with 4H or something, lessons were impossibly expensive in Tahoe, so I only had 1 ski lesson when I was 9 years old and part of the 4H ski club.  And when the rental places were hungry for ANY business after the season was virtually over, so you paid substantially less.  But still WAY above the deal Cool found.

And we are trying to get involved in a more healthy, active lifestyle.  And planning on moving to snow-sport Telluride ski resort mtncountry, Colorado.  And I’m trying to have a little fun in my life instead of all school-work-prepare drudgery.  So I was for it!  And I had a total meltdown on Saturday after work, which made Cool have a bad day, and that caused US to be completely out of sorts.  So we needed some fun on Sunday, and planned on going to the 10:30 AM lesson.

They want you to be there an hour early, and somehow we were running a little behind.  So we arrived in a sort of rush to make the class (you remember my lateness phobia).  We paid, got our passes, and were told to go to the last door for our rentals.  They fitted our boots and handed us the snowboards, and we hustled to the learning center.  Everyone else had goggles, and some had helmets.  I don’t know where they got those or how we missed them, but oh well–we made it.  And in Tahoe, helmets aren’t really a “thing” I guess because my friends and I never wore them, we didn’t wear them with elementary 4H, and I don’t think I ever Steamboat Resort skisaw ANYone on the slopes wearing one.  So though it seems like a safe thing to do, I wasn’t alarmed that we weren’t wearing helmets. . .

Our lesson had 12-15 people, mostly kids.  And kids learn quickly, have no fear, and jump right back up if they fall.  So it’s not a fair comparison to adults.  And I’ve never had official lessons, or really snowboarded, but I went 2-3 brief times with friends growing up, so I’d at least been on the snow–so I wasn’t a fair comparison either.  Cool struggled.  As you do as a 30-something learning a new physical task.  She needed to go slower, but she didn’t do any worse then expected for her very first time on the snow.  These things require practice, patience, heart–and good humor.

I was caught in between–trying to follow the speedy class, but also wait for struglasaurus-Cool.  The instructors Easter 015kept telling me to do whatever, but I had to hang back and almost disobey because Cool would be waaaay behind and not know what we were supposed to be doing.  So I was pressured to be a fair bit below her on the hill.  And she crab-walked down one time, did some falling and crawling, so it wasn’t alarming to see her crumpled when I looked back at her.  But she might be hurt?  Cool normally has a very low pain threshold, and her anxiety kicks in making her a little bit of a hypochondriac.  So I figured she was just being a baby about a normal fall.  Or tired.  Or slow to get up, or frustrated and giving up or something.  I tried to motion to her with thumbs up vs thumbs down, but she only half-way responded.  And she was too far away to be certain what gesture she returned.  And one of our instructors looked to be talking with her, so I figured she was receiving some coaching.

Then, they were both walking down the mountain in the direction of the first aid center.  Uh oh, so I followed them in to see what was happening.  And I had to un-do my bindings and ditch my board, so I was behind.  When I got inside, 3 women and a man were securing Cool to a backboard.  Fuck!  Of course we should have rainbow 5gone back for the helmets.  Cool has a history of injury.  Her mom had been adamant that if she tried snow-sports she would break an ankle, and had tried to dissuade her.  She didn’t look terrible to me, but I wasn’t certain what happened.  I had obviously missed something. . .  The first aid was serious, I could see these people meant business.  And I frantically signed to her “money?!”  And tried to mouth, “How much does this cost?!”  But there was a lot happening and she was distracted and she said “Free.”  Which I was dubious about.  But who was I to step in and tell these people to give us a moment to discuss things?  The law does not consider me Cool’s legit family, and they could kick me out of the room all-together if they wanted.  So I had to just stand there watching and wondering and worrying.

They strapped her in, loaded her on a hospital bed, and began assessing her status.  Unfortunately, I had reminded Cool to take her 6(?) bipolar/anxiety meds before we went.  So of course, her pupils were dilated.  And her meds ALWAYS make her foggy headed so when they asked her to remember 3 items to evaluate head trauma–of course, she forgot the 3rd.  But that’s her normal.  I was still 90% certain she had just taken a normal fall–not sustained any severe injury.  And Cool is a passive petal.  If pressed strongly enough, Cool will just go with the flow, do what she is told, and think about what SHE wants or the consequences afterward.  That’s Cool’s normal as well.  So she was just being compliant, not really thinking about the finances, or what the backboard meant, or the things I was freaking out about.

Snowboard Emx 2014 018

After about 20 minutes, the 12 people (this was code red stuff) began asking if Cool had any family, or a friend or something) with her.  And right away she told them her mate.  Which, is our term for US because I reject the term “partner” because it sounds too business-like and stiff.  But they apparently, didn’t know what the hell she was talking about (more ammunition for the brain damage theory) and since we are not legally-anything, she had to say “girlfriend.”  Which I HATE.  We have so much more to our relationship then mere dating.  It’s a horrible thing to have to deal with gay stigma in a crises situation.

Snowboard Emx 2014 019

It made me really annoyed when they confirmed with me, “You’re her friend?”  And I was like, “Mate,” all exasperated.  The head doctor guy told me about the pupils and said Cool had complained of neck pain and wrist pain (and stomach tenderness, sore feet, as well as head-constriction discomfort) and they couldn’t rule out brain injury because of her non-responsive demeanor, pupil-size, and forgetting that 3rd word.  I tried to explain that was Cool’s norm.  This was just her personality and meds.  He said an ambulance was on the way, and immediately I said, “No, no, no, under no circumstance could we afford an ambulance ride–I can drive her.”  And he said 1)  She was on a backboard and was not getting off of it–he would absolutely not release her.  2)  He wanted to make ultra-sure she was OK (CYA) 3) tried to downplay the expense because she has health insurance.  To which I was like, what–health insurance doesn’t cover 100% and we were now looking at ambulance + emergency room + any diagnostics, not including any treatments if they were in fact warrented.  He persisted that he would not release her, but I could talk to the ambulance people and sign a liability waiver–which I said I would love to do.  But I knew I had no legal right and SHE would have to be the one to sign it.

Snowboard Emx 2014 017

Then, I finally was able to get within Cool’s vicinity (since the 100 people had dispersed, and people realized I was “legit”) to talk to her for the first time.  Cool was in invalid mode, with an oxygen mask and the whole bit and I leaned in and started telling her she had to speak for herself and deny the ambulance that was on its way.  I think it was the first time she realized where this injury was taking her, and the first time money really entered into her mind.  I felt like all the medical staff surrounding us felt like I was unsympathetic–but I know Cool.  I know her hypochondriac stuff, her finances, and how she doesn’t THINK until later.  And I figured if she was legit-hurt, I could drive us down the mountain and we’d go from there.  But I also felt like I had no legal right to step in.  As Cool’s closest relative–that this incident is going to directly impact–that felt awful.

An hour after the call, the ambulance arrived.  And they loaded Cool onto a gurney and arranged for me to drive her car along behind.  I was helpless.  I guess Cool decided she wanted to go to emergency on the ambulance–and if that’s what she wanted (despite the consequences) I had no right to say otherwise.  Part 2:  Emergency.  That’s tomorrow–stay tuned.

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Supplement My Life

20 Jan

Twenty days into the month, and I have 19 posts in a row.  Though an ambulance ride trip to the ER have put me super-behind for school/R&R.  Maybe more on that later–which reminds me there was another subject I said I’d write about later also, but I’ve forgotten.  So I’ll have to remember to see the headers on my last 3 posts to see what I’m supposed to be writing about–I’m all over the place without a day of relaxation/productive weekend.  Anyway, here are some vitamins and supplements and what they do.  Which, I would NOT normally spend a bunch of money on something that may or may not do anything, but the Grocery Outlet always carries a bunch of these for cheap.  Anyway, now I’m late for my shower, so here’s the list: 

American Ginseng – for physical and mental vigor, longevity, depression caused by exhaustion and stress, normalizes body functions, helps body adapt to stress

Ashwagandha – for stress resistance, immune system protection, sense of well-being, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, memory aid, cholesterol and blood sugar, sexual potency, rejuvenation

Astragalus – for immune system, blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes, energy and stamina, flu, bronchitis, and sinus infections, excessive perspiration

Bacopa – for memory and cognitive function, stress, anxiety, and depression, asthma, hoarseness, and respiratory system, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), ulcers

Bee Pollen – for rejuvenation, sexual function, prostate, mental alertness, physical endurance, balance in endocrine system, chronic colitis, constipation, or diarrhea, hay fever and allergies

Chamomile – for relaxation, insomnia, nerves, anxiety, menstrual cramps, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), digestive ailments, diverticular disorders, canker sores, gingivitis, eczema

Chaste Tree – for premenstrual syndrome (PMS), mood swings, headaches, irritability, breast tenderness, cramps, heavy menstruation, fibrocystic breasts, endometriosis, acne, infertility

Cordyceps – for immune system, exhaustion, recuperation after illness, impotence, neurasthenia, backaches, anti-cancer, antioxidant

Damiana – for aphrodisiac, sexual stimulant, sexual performance, sexual desire, circulation, fertility, anxiety and well-being, weakness and exhaustion, menopause and hormonal balance

Evening Primrose – for breast pain (mastalgia), PMS, menopause ailments, arthritis, eczema, psoriasis, and acne, bruises, hemorrhoids, anti-inflammatory

Feverfew – for joints and rheumatoid arthritis, migraine headaches, aches and pains, anti-inflammatory, fever, menstrual cramps, blood clot inhibition

Flaxseed – for cholesterol and blood pressure, skin, hair, and nails, acne, psoriasis, and rosacea, fiber, digestive aid, menstruation, hormonal balance, gallstones, antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral

Fo-Ti – for rejuvenation, energy, vigor, and endurance, blood and liver tonic, insomnia, blood pressure, circulation, and cholesterol,

Garcinia Cambogia – for weight loss support, fat-burning, appetite suppressant, anti-bacterial, energy

Ginkgo Biloba – for circulation, memory and mental clarity, anxiety and depression, antioxidant, frequency of asthma and allergy attacks, erectile dysfunction, vertigo and tinnitus, hemorrhoids

Gotu Kola – for memory and cognitive function, relaxation, circulation, pain and inflammation, diuretic, congestion, fever, skin disorders, varicose veins, nervous system

Green Tea – for weight loss, detoxification, cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood pressure, appetite suppressant, tooth and gum health, immune system, energy, depression, headaches

Guarana – for energy, mental alertness, fatigue; stamina and physical endurance, appetite suppressant, PMS headaches, astringent,diuretic

Korean Ginseng – for energy, rejuvenation, erectile dysfunction, stress, cognitive function, menopause, menstruation, depression and well-being, blood sugar, cholesterol, blood pressure

Muira Puama – for aphrodisiac, sexual desire, erectile dysfunction, cramps and PMS, circulation to prostate, fatigue and exhaustion, reproductive, nervous, and gastrointestinal systems, rheumatism

Passionflower – for nervous system, mild sedative, nervousness and anxiety, relaxation, insomnia, gastrointestinal spasms

Rehmannia – for vitality, diabetes, hypoglycemia, urinary tract problems, anemia, menstruation, liver, blood pressure and circulation, blood tonic, night sweats, fever, digestion, antifungal, cardiovascular

Resveratrol – for anti-aging and longevity, anti-cancer, memory and cognitive function, arthritis and rheumatism, antioxidant, fatty liver, kidneys, weight loss, energy, anti-inflammatory, antifungal

Shiitake Mushroom – for immune system, mineral absorption, blood sugar, cholesterol, and blood pressure, anti-cancer, fatigue, depression, vitality, longevity, hepatitis, anticoagulant

Siberian Ginseng – for circulation, rejuvenation, energy, and endurance, immune system, memory and cognitive function, cholesterol, sexual potency, reflexes and coordination, respiratory system

Skullcap – for antispasmodic effects, mild sedative, insomnia, nervous system, anxiety and nervous tension, convulsions

St John’s Wort – for depression and anxiety, seasonal affective disorder, antibacterial, PMS and menopause ailments, sciatica, nervous disorders, wounds, eczema, burns, hemorrhoids

Suma – for immune system, cardiovascular, and reproductive systems, cholesterol, circulation, PMS and menopause, anemia, fatigue and exhaustion, anti-cancer properties

Valerian – for mild sedative, anxiety and nervous disorders, insomnia, digestion, nervous system

White Willow – for fever, headaches, body aches and pains, arthritis, rheumatism, bursitis, neuralgia, menstrual cramps, digestive system, gastrointestinal conditions, anti-inflammatory

Wild Yam – for antioxidant properties, menstrual cramps, nerve pain, indigestion, nausea, colic, morning sickness, coughs as an expectorant, blood sugar and cholesterol


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Health Care Confusion

8 Oct

I repeatedly voted for ObamaCare or “Affordable” Health Care Act or whatever you call it.  Having no real idea what the law said/meant.  I thought free health care for everyone was an excellent idea.  I was under the impression everyone who had health insurance would get more from it–no co-pays, no discrimination.  All the women groups and gay groups said how awesome it would be.  I thought either government or employers had to cover every person–and (this sounds so silly now) I thought it would be at no charge to individuals (me).  I was thinking of Canada’s Health System.

parade 2

I should have researched:

-Firstly, I had/have no idea about the ins and outs of the law

-I don’t understand insurance jargon such as “deducatable.”  Am I extraordinarily stupid–or does anyone?

-I don’t know where to look to find easy to read, non-politically motivated, actual info–that pertains to my situation.

-I don’t want to have to spend a disproportionate amount of time researching and signing up for insurance–or a lot of money.

Leslie Knope

My Situation:

-I work part-time and no longer qualify for health insurance through my ‘under 50 employees small business’ job.

-I go to school part-time so I do not qualify for a student insurance plan.

-I make too much money (how is this even possible?!) for Medicaid.

-I applied for the Medicaid-rejects, state-run (so called cheaper-option) insurance and it would be $128/mo!  For catastrophic-only.

-The insurance companies in my area offer $100/mo min policies for me.  For just catastophic.

hit by train 1

I guess I am Also “Willfully Uninsured”:

-I have no pre-exsisting conditions

-I have no chronic (or other) health concerns/conditions.

-I never go to the doctor–unless I’m injured AT work real bad, dentist, or glasses (neither EVER covered).

-I have in fact, gone to the emergency room once (at 22 y.o.) and of course couldn’t afford the bill–but I paid it back in full.  By myself.  Slowly.  Because I am a responsible citizen–so I in no way expect society to cover any accident I may have.

egg sx bruise


-What is the absolute cheapest insurance I can get?

-Which company offers the max insurance benefits to cheapest rate ratio?

-When I do pay a (high by my standards) monthly insurance fee, and don’t end up having any accident or health concern–where does that money go???

-How much is the tax for NOT having insurance?

-When do they start charging tax for being non-insured?

2012 Spring 084


Beee Careful

9 Aug

Wanna hear a funny, meaning ironic story?

Cool and I are on the patio and the bees are flying around our food.  Cool is doing that annoying, girlie, flapping and running from the bees.  I hate when gals do that!  I told her just to sit still, the bees just want to taste the sugar on our drinks.  Stop flapping, because they will only sting if provoked.


After all the bees at lunch today–I saw a bee in our bathroom at home. This was hours later and a mile from the patio we walked to.  Our apartment doors are shut, and the sliding glass door has a screen–I have no idea how it got inside.  Anyway, the bee flew into the light.  I thought maybe it would sizzle in there, but it didn’t.  Then I just left him, thinking without any bee-stuff inside it would eventually just die on it’s own.  And I thought good thing Cool isn’t here because she would freak.

bee 2


Three hours later, I’m quietly reading in bed, my body under the sheets.  I feel a terrible bite/sting. I mean, I called out “No, No, Nooo!”  The fucking bee somehow ended up IN bed with me–and though I was unmoving the little shit stung me–2 times. Fucker! And now it hurts like a bitch. I took a benadryl a second ago, but the shit hurts!  It felt like repeated stings even after I launched out of bed.

And I squished that bee’s body bad–little mofo.

bee honey comb

Bee stings are no joke.  I’m glad if it stung anyone in my family it was me.  Cool is a petal with no pain tolerance, and I’m certain just heaing this story will make her phobic enough.  And I’m not sure how the kitties would have reacted–it hurt!  I slept restlessly (despite Promethazine, anti-nausea for my antibiotics and Benadryl) because the sting near my knee felt like any joint with inflammation.

bee 3

This stuff is just my luck–as you can see I’m having an especially bad week.


That Bites!

5 Aug

Right when I picked up the phone and heard so-and-so client’s voice I thought, “You are going to be a pain in my a$$ today.”  This particular client always comes with shenanigans:  Bringing a dog in to our feline-exclusive clinic, taking contagious cats out of the carrier to run loose through the lobby, not paying–it’s always something with this one.  But she said she had an “emergency,” so I told her to bring it in.

I don’t get too riled when a client says emergency–often that person’s idea of an emergency is very different from my idea of a critical patient.  Also, I don’t get too worked up when someone says their cat is fractious for the same reason.  I see the whole situation, then, if it is warranted I’ll go into emergency mode or get extra safety equipment, as the case may be.

I was cautious, but the kitty let me take all the vitals.  She at no point really fussed, or got super-excited.  She had been a sweet cat, but the pain of picking her up or touching her belly made her bite.  She let the doctor do the exam with some gentle restraint and only lifted her head to bite when the belly was pressed.  She was hardly intractable at any point.  X-rays were warranted so I had to pick her up off the counter.  I used a towel, and the initial picking up seemed to hurt her, but I thought we were in the clear until I had to set her down again.  I thought this was a reasonable assumption, because I had already picked her up to get a weight, and picked her up a second time to get her off of the scale, and she fussed initially, but let me do it without incident.  I took exactly one step out of the exam room, and somehow she found my left hand through the towel and clamped on to where the middle finger knuckle attaches to the top of my hand–one tooth on each side of the joint.

didn't capture the full extent edit

I wouldn’t have done anything different.  I think the bite was mostly bad luck.  I WAS wary, I was careful, I deal with much worse on a daily basis.  I can handle myself around a fractious or painful cat on most occasions.  She gave no vocalization, no indication (after I picked her up) she would attack.  Just bit and refused to let go for what felt like the longest time.

I try not to make a scene when I’m injured at work.  It’s disruptive and counter-productive, doesn’t instill trust in the clients, my co-workers, or my boss, and can get you hurt worse.  Startle an already biting cat and you just might get some more sharp-edges.  So I quietly set the cat on the back treatment counter and tried to pry her jaws off my left hand with my free hand.  Nope, wouldn’t budge.  I calmly called out the other tech’s name once–to no avail.  I thought maybe putting the cat in the sink would change her position just enough that she would let go of me and try to run away.  No luck, she was still clenched around the middle knuckle of my left hand.  The receptionist came back, and asked what I needed.

Remember the cat is under a towel, so the jaws of life was happening out of view.  I didn’t want the receptionist to make any sudden movements, so I slowly told her to come over quietly and do what needed to be done to make the cat release my hand.  I under no circumstance wanted to upset the cat more and sustain chops ALL over my hand and arm.  Cats can bite really fast when they want.  I didn’t know what she did until later, but I guess she just gently touched the cat, and it let go of me.  Then she put on the gloves and told me to wash my hand.  I opened a kennel for her to put the painful biter in.

bruised ankle

my worst bruise of all time

The funny thing was, I could tell the bite went pretty deep, and was in a joint which is the worst for later infection, but it didn’t look bad.  I mean, I never show the pain as I feel it.  I never bruise, never have a bad, bloody stump, my injuries are never looking as bad as they feel.  But this was an especially meager specimen in that regard.  It never even bled at all.  And it just

my most painful bite injury ever--not today's

my most painful bite injury ever–not today’s

looked like two small dots where the teeth went in–I have old scars on my hands and arms that look worse!  It also wasn’t all red and swollen–it looked fine, actually.  I scrubbed the hand with Betadine.  And while I rinsed it, I knew I was about to pass out.  Which is a funny feeling.  You notice it in your stomach first, then in your head.  And then my knees buckled so I was leaning heavily on the ledge of the counter.  I knew I was about to pass out and I should sit down first, yet my body didn’t really move in a quick fashion.  My boss came walking out of the exam room, and said something like, “Are you about to pass out?”  To which I (cheerily I thought, considering the situation) responded, “Indeed I am, you called that one.”  Or some such nerdy phrase.

even after 20 failed IV attempts--very little to show for it

even after 20 failed IV attempts–very little to show for it

I never went to pieces though.  I didn’t scream, cry, or yell.  And I don’t think I acted dramatically.  But I knew this would likely be infected so I needed to get antibiotics.  I’m usually anti-medical, just because it costs money, takes time away from work, and usually I don’t get sick or hurt in ways I can’t just deal with on my own.  But I knew I’d get the red line (indicating infection) if I didn’t.  I had already planned to use my school loan money to pay for the visit, and was pleasantly astounded when my boss mentioned workers comp.  Sometimes small, private business discourage making a claim and either make you pay if you go to the doctor, or will pay you back later.  I called Cool, because careful to tell her not to be alarmed.  She tends to panic if I say I’m ill/injured because it generally takes a LOT to put me out of commission.  She was nice enough to pick me up–though it took a long time because of construction (so she said), because I didn’t wanna pass out behind the wheel and total Rusty.  No need to make a bad situation worse.  So I went (on work time) to urgent care, picked up my prescriptions, and ate a sandwich since I knew I wouldn’t get an additional lunch break and we would probably be really behind when I got back to work.  

We were this-close to my work, and I was anxious to get back and try to help catch up, when my glasses slid down my nose.  These are my old pair that I use for work, because I know they will get all junked up with ear cleanings, abscess goo, etc, etc. . .  I went to use my left shoulder to push them up–since my hand was out of commission–and the lens fell out.  This happens from time time time, and I took off the frames in order to pop the lens back in. It had not fallen out at all, the frame had broken in 2, un-salvageable pieces!  So just as we got to my work, I had no vision.  We had to drive all the past, work to our apartment, so I could get my other frames.  Then, I saw for myself just how slow the construction was–it was on every route we could have taken.  And tedious.  It took what felt like forever to get back to work.  It was the kind of thing that was true, but I felt others would think was a lie–so I felt weird.  But it’s totally true!

cats meow bite and glasses

And as soon as I did get back to work–they said, “We just called your co-worker to come work for you.”  So I didn’t actually have to go back at all.  Which they had actually told me before I left.  But I wanted the money, didn’t want to mess up everyone’s schedule, and didn’t leave because the hand HURT.  I have had much worse bites, a lot more in number, some combined with scratches, ones the got very swollen and red and ugly, and the pain is usually a 5 on the pain scale, with the last bad bite in Seattle climbing at a brief 11 when I touched ice to it.  So this was pretty mild, pain-wise.  I just needed the antibiotics (and anti-nausea drugs).  So I planned to finish the day.

I didn’t TAKE the antibiotics, because they make my belly ill.  And my anti-nausea drugs are supposed to make me sleepy.  I didn’t want to go back to work only to barf all afternoon.  But the vet said I either take the afternoon off, or take a dog-sized Amoxi we have. I told her if it made me barf I was going home and we agreed. So I took an amoxi–which turned out to be easy on my belly. Would have saved a lot of trouble if she had given me that option for the Rx instead of sending me to the doctor.  But I guess that’s bad, bad, bad and not legit–even though I find it helpful.

And that’s all I want to type, when my hand probably will stiffen up to the point that precludes typing at all.  I’m off to other internet places.  With me a useful hand and calm belly!

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The Teeth and Claw

15 Apr

Insubordinate is I guess what you’d have to call me.  Though normally I am a rule follower.  Even if I don’t understand WHY the rule is in place.  Even if I don’t agree with the rule.  I’ll do it–because I’m supposed to.

But going to the doctor for cat scratches or even bites?  Unless they are really bad (as judged be me and my pain level) I just don’t see it as a worthwhile thing to do anymore.  Plus, I’m fully vaccinated-tetanus and rabies included–so I’m not concerned in that way about bites/scratches.  Side-note:  And the pictures never turn out as dramatic as the injury appears in person, as you can see.  Maybe that will be my deciding-factor.  If the pictures conveys a gruesome injury–it’s time to seek medical attention.  Back to topic:  And I totally get that the vets are legally, professionally, and morally obligated as well as probably legit concerned to send me to get medical treatment if I’m ripped apart by a cat.

I’ve gone to urgent care or emergency at every job I’ve ever had (barring Emergency, ironically) so I know just what will happen:

First, I will wait an extraordinarily long time.

Then, I’ll have to do a LOT of paperwork.  And answer a lot of the same questions again.  And another time.  I will also have to make up some story about how the injury happened.  A lot of private small businesses don’t want to pay out of workers comp, preferring to either reimburse you later, just have you pay, or have you utilize the insurance they give you.  And of course this is never discussed prior to an injury.

After the waiting, the paperwork, the lies, and of course more waiting.  Some nurse/assistant/orderly/janitor will come into your room.  They will gingerly/harshly and possibly clumsily clean the wounds with some iodine solution or chlorhexidine–which is of course the FIRST thing I do when I have a compromise in my skin.

Then, there may or may not be a bandage or wrap applied–depending how busy the person sent in is at the time and how competent they are at the job.

Next, more waiting.

Finally, a doctor will come in, maybe glance at the wound, maybe not.  The doctor definitively won’t touch you.  Not ever.  Also, they will minimize your injury.  Doctor tells you to take antibiotics.  When I say they make me nauseous, Doctor will explain to take them with food.  When I say I do and they STILL make me nauseous, the antibiotics might be cocktailed with some sort of belly-soother.  Or not.  Either way, I won’t end up taking the whole course–either because they really do a number on my belly or out of sheer laziness.

The whole thing will take from two to five hours when all is said and done.  And cost much more then anyone wants to pay.  And I could have done what they did at home.  for free.  And in much less time.  Which is why, I did not go seek medical treatment for little scratches and maybe a couple of bites–on a Saturday.  No.  Just call me non-compliant.

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Sacrifice Your Body!

14 Apr

That’s my brain talking to me, by the way, not some crazed coach or hard-core employer or anything like that.  I’m beginning to wonder if I have some electricity, electromagnetic force, radioactive force field, maybe a wildly colored aura (like my mom supposedly has) or something like that. . .

Two cats in the last two days went wildly ballistic in dramatic fashion with no warning.  I was restraining both at the time of the explosion and through the resultant teeth and claw yo-yo.  Honestly, I am slow to let go of a fractious cat because all these bad scenarios run through my head.  What if kitty bites or scratches someone else after I’ve let it go?  What if kitty runs somewhere and we can’t find it or get it out?  What if the cat tries to get away and is hurt by something (dogs, needles, loose drugs, insert anything here__________) in the hospital?  What if the kitty gets away from me then runs out a door and gets outside, where a lot of really bad things could happen?  So I end up holding/juggling the cats until they either calm back down or someone hands me a glove/towels/carrier.  And I have to say I’m a pretty good cat wrangler.  I have pretty fast hands I would say.  And I’m able to anticipate their actions a lot of the time.  It’s actually one of my favorite parts of the job–a LOT of people are scared of the sharp ends of cats.

The first explosive cat HATES to be pilled.  The vet was giving a series of three oral meds, while I was holding feet down.  The kitty didn’t like it, but it was nothing I haven’t seen before–just drooling, tucking the head, trying to spit the pills back up, and attempts to scratch-per the usual.  Then, suddenly, the cat began flying off the counter, trying to hit the ceiling.  I was trying to push it back down and get it back under control so there was a comical (after the fact) kitty “dribbling” (as in basket ball) effect.  Turns out the cat got stressed over the medicating and began to panic due to respiratory distress.  I’d panic too if I couldn’t breathe for any length of time.

Today, same vet and I had to take an x-ray of a tri-color (read-notoriously naughty) cat that had inappetance for two or so days.  Sure, the kitty has tried to give the teeth and claw in the exam room when the vet tried to look in the mouth or palpate the abdomen.  But nothing that even warranted towel or gloves.  So we’ve got the cat lieing on it’s side for the radiograph and I rev the foot pedal, and kitty loses it.  Working with cats, I know this will happen more often then not (cats HATE that noise) and I aborted clicking.  Usually when the extra noise stops, so does the cat’s freak out.  Not this buddy.  I was still somehow holding the kitty as it went hysterical.  I did not want it to get back behind the x-ray stuff as it is a nightmare to try to get cats back out of there.  I’ve had to spend 45 minutes on a busy Friday trying to disentangle a cat from the narrow place between the x-ray table and wall, and I wanted no part of that on a Saturday.  Finally, the cat (or I?) released and it flew toward the door–which luckily, I had closed on my way into the processor room.  The cat looked like it was having a bad trip:  Eyes wide, jumping as if some imaginary attacker were after it, jumping high into the corner.  Maybe it got into some toxin and started having some hallucination right then?

Anyway, no warning.  For either, and that is very unusual.  You will usually at the very least feel a cat tense up when it’s getting ready to ramp up.  Or there will be body language of some sort.  But with these two–not really any warning for such severe reactions.  And of course, my hands are all effed up.  More on that in the next installment.

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