Saturday, July 26, 2008

Societal rants

We have a Walgreens going in our town. Keep in mind now we have a Rite-Aid, Walgreens, and a local Mom and Pop type pharmacy with in an elementary softball players throw of each other.
We also have a Wal*mart, a Grocery store, and several other well known chains in town.

The question is, why do people have problems with "big box chain stores"

This is my response.

Take your blinders off and read the writing on the wall.
We can't be a sell sell sell society. We need to able to have goods and or services to sell. China isn't going to do us any favors by manufacturing everything. If it wasn't for "awful Corporate America" we wouldn't have half of the issues that we have. Since this is a capitalistic society, why is health care (something that everyone needs) such a lucrative business? While most health care facilities label themselves as "non-profits" you can't tell me that a physician must eat ramen noodles in order to survive. They make money. And why is that? Because insurance companies (who make oodles of money on patients who are healthy and do not use the services), and they contract to pay set amounts for certain services, and by doing so, drive the costs of health care up. So it's not the Mom and Pop's who can't afford to offer insurance because it is cost prohibitive and they can't financially justify it without passing it further on to the consumers. And it's not the big box chain stores who offer "health insurance" that will only pay for certain services that they approve, and only from providers that they choose. Meanwhile, they charge the poor shmucks who work for slightly more than minimum wage huge sums of money for the "benefits" they receive. This lulls people into a false sense of security and believing (because they don't read their policies) that if they are hurt or sick, they can go to the hospital and receive the care they need, and not be charged more than they make in a year. Apparently, people who have not worked in both big box chain stores and small Mom and Pop type establishments don't understand this concept (I have worked in both). The answer is not Dirigo Health, either, which is balanced on the soda/beer/flavored water/cigarette tax/anything else taxable, as well as siphoning off money from the money people in Maine pay into insurance to pad the balance. Nor is the answer socialized medicine, because you will still have the rich receiving the best care, because they can buy supplemental insurance while the poor and "nonsupplementally" insured sit and wait for appointments, hip replacements and knee replacements, usually dying from complications of said issue before it taking place.
Ask yourself, "Why are our taxes so high?"
Look at the social programs that we as a country have established, and how they are funded. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac? How are they going to be bailed out? The government...and where did they get that money? That's right folks, every time you get paid and you see the "Federal Income Tax", we're paying for it. Because of questionable tactics and falsehoods made by eager homeowners (and not being a responsible, educated individual or couple), we have to pay for their stupidity.
If you spend more than you have, it's simple math. You'll be broke.
(a responsible) Mom and Dad won't bail you out. So why should the federal government and everyone who is paying taxes?

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Rising to the Challenge

Medic Matthew has given me a challenge...blabbering blogging more than once a week.

So here we go.
I will insert my apology for the rant here.

Being relatively new to the publishing blogosphere, I don't want to offend anyone. But this is my personal opinion, and I'm protected under free speech, and I can say whatever I want. If you're offended, you don't have to come back.

I read Ambulance Driver and Crystal and have worked as an EMT-Intermediate for a transfer company.
I have also been hospitalized for mental health reasons.

So on one hand (the EMT hand), I have heard "Just another fucking nut run" when the pager goes off to transport a patient from Big City Hospital to the holding pen local psychiatric facility
I can't say that I have never been frustrated after the 10th psych run in an evening. But with each patient, I approached them all with the dignity and respect that I would give my grandmother on her deathbed.

On the other hand (JaneQPublic), I've been in the position to require a stay in a mental health hospital, given multiple circumstances that seemed to heavy to bear. And that's ok. If you broke your leg, would you go to the hospital and have it fixed (if the bone was poking out through the skin and the lower half of your leg were turning blue, and you begin to wonder how could you POSSIBLY have that much blood in your body??) Of course. So why is it that something unseen, unknown, draws so much stigma? "Well, he looked fine."

On one hand (the EMT Hand), I realize that out of 600 runs that I did in a year, 200 were for mental health reasons, whether it was for transfers or on scene interventions.

For some of those people, I question the validity of their "mental health" issues and whether or not they really required a very expensive trip in the back of an ambulance.

However, for some, I'm quite sure that an ambulance was truly the safest way for them to travel. Some of them, with a police escort.

On the JaneQPublic hand, I believe that the shear volume of people who cry wolf tend to make the EMS providers* care less and less about paying attention to what problem a psych patient may have, and thus, becoming callous towards them. Believe it or not, how we feel comes out in the comments we make to and around the patient, in body language, and in comments we make to each other.

As a society and as a profession, I think we need to watch what and how we say things because you never know who is listening, the experiences they have been through, and the impact of some seemingly insignificant verbal jab would have on someone who has almost completely given up on the human condition.
The converse of this is true as well. If we exude confidence as being someone who is trustworthy, a good listener, doesn't gossip, and can find solutions to problems (Note: Not Solve problems) then we are more receptive to meeting people where they are, and being compassionate towards all patients.

*Maybe this is a vast generalization of people I've encountered who have been burned by the system

Monday, July 21, 2008


So I can't just leave and not explain...
On Friday the 13th, my friend Em had a bridal shower, that her sister threw. Well, think about an X-rated, uh, Tupperware party. Or Pampered Chef. Yes, boys and girls. You get the idea...
Well, her sister happens to work for a company that sends out the boys with the lights on top of their cars, and they're usually blue.
One of their fine (and I do mean fine) employees showed up to "crash" the party....
Whom I happen to have done some training with and I see time to time at work.
Em had a piece of, uh, vibrating "merchandise" which she promptly tossed into my lap.
So I'm stuck holding "the bag" as it were...
And my face turned about as red as a freshly washed fire engine.
I wanted to crawl under the couch, but well, it would have been a bit obvious. So my face just stayed a brilliant shade of crimson that would have made a cooked lobster envious.
Then we went out "bar hopping".
I don't drink unless I have a designated driver, and seeing as that wasn't really an option (I had cleverly volunteered as a DD), we went to a couple of "Popular" places.
I have some observations to make...
1. If you have anything more than fried eggs, REIGN those puppies in...Black eyes on you or your date just aren't cool.
2. If you have anything more than fried eggs, Tube Tops with no support should not find their way to your wardrobe
3. If you're so drunk you can't walk a straight line, there are chairs on the sidelines, have a seat already!
4. Men, once you cross the 50 and older range, please don't go to "dance" spots and try to pick up young girls. Boners on the floor are just not cool. Instead, go out on the golf course.
5. Girls, if you wear short skirts with nothing underneath, to the point that you can see the cheeks of your hiney, don't be surprised when a guy stands behind you in an attempt to "dance" It's called the horizontal Mambo, and usually results in regret.
6. To the over 40 crowd- Goth is out. It's for punks who are trying to rebel and be "independent" and "different" just like everyone else. Primarily, they are rebelling against your generation. It doesn't make you cool to dress like them.
7. Girls, I understand the buddy system, but going into a bathroom stall together? Come on...please don't tell me you someone to pass you the toilet paper
8. Kids, don't try to get in if you're under 21. You will be had, and we can spot you a mile away.
9. Musicians- please find more than two notes. Really. After the first 10 measures of 2 notes, it gets old. Very quickly.
10. Bars- When someone LOOKS drunk, please, stop serving them

ok, I think i've gone gone sufficiently on yet another rant.

Hi, my name is Random...

So, it's been a long time, again!
It's not the writers strike, nope.
It's not lack of desire, but maybe lack of material. A while ago, the bariatric office moved out of our area and our area got revamped. That's another story for another time. So I lost my primary reason for starting this blog. Since the last time I posted, well, not a lot has happened. I guess that's not entirely true. My husband and I took our one of our nieces and one of our nephews to the Shrine Circus. Then we took all of our nieces and nephews (save 1) to a Baseball game because Dylan had been nominated most improved student in his class, and was honored at one of Boston's farm teams. We got some pretty awesome pictures of him, but he was scared of Slugger, the mascot... He was so cute though!
We took the Grands to the Fuji, the scrumptuous place for Casco Bay Rolls. I want one. Mmmm and plum sake.
Gram tried SUSHI! She's like 75 and never tried it, and she LIKED IT! It was so cool!
Oh..And I forgot...
The voyage to King Arthur Flour. HAHAHAHA....Put 6 women in a van on the way to Vermont, from Maine and what do you get? Sore sides, from laughing so hard!
It was me, my mom(Mom1), my mother-in-law(Mom2), her mom(gram), my mom's neighbor(MN), and my husband's cousin's wife(HCW).
So, varied age ranges, but the common thread is that we all love to cook. I happened to have been listening to Meatloaf (of the "Paradise by the dashboard light" artist). Well, I asked if anyone wanted to listen to anything specific, I didn't get much response, and I said "Does Anyone mind Meatloaf?" To which Gram says "Isn't that what you cook for dinner?" So, naturally, I had to play "Paradise by the Dashboard Light", to which she quickly realized, the Meatloaf to which I was referring, was not a dinner option at all.
We arrive at Mecca, I mean, King Arthur Flour, where we proceed to spend a few hours perusing the treasures, and wishing we had a larger van for the loot that we had acquired. I know we came back with at least 125# of flour, and no one rode on the roof, amazingly! Since the middle of April, my house has gone through about 70 pounds of flour. There are only 2 people in our house. No, really, we live inside the house, not around it (by the way, home made bread costs about .40 per loaf. Why on Earth would you allow the stores to rob you blind and make you fat with High Fructose Corn Syrup, and BLEACHED FLOUR!??) We also went to the Vermont Country Store (Very cool store...check it out sometime!)
I digress.
So we're on our way back, and being fond of cycling, I pointed out that a guy was TOTALLY riding the wrong way. (he was about 50, with a backpack, no helmet, his seat all the way down and his knees out past the handlebars)
So, MN postulated that he was sitting on a couple of basketballs.
Well, that devolved into raisins and hotdogs based on Gram's suggestion
Which, of course, I supplied the Maine version of Viagra...A popsicle stick and Duct tape
And the van collapsed into hysterics...
And postulating that he was probably riding to get his bottle of Royal Crown for the night.
More hysterics.
Imagine a dorm room full of giggling teenagers.
That's what the van was like.
And I arrived back at my parents house to discover my husband had dinner mostly cooked (He truly is the King of the Grill. And don't let anyone take that spatula away! I'll chase them!)
Then I had my Birthday (More sushi!)
And we had a BBQ for Mother's day
And I took a week's vacation (and it didn't seem like it a bit!)
And we had a BBQ for Father's day...
More later. I have to back up...