Friday, December 28, 2007

Work pet peeve

This is my #1 pet peeve: dorks who park in ambulance parking areas at hospitals.
If you are driving someone to the hospital, park in the stalls and just suck it up and pay.
If you are picking someone up, either pay or circle the block.
If you are a vending machine filler or a pamphlet supplier, do NOT think you are more important than the sick people we transport, and thus park in the ambulance parking.
If you are a bloody TAXI, screw off.

One of my coworkers recently parked directly behind not one, but TWO taxis parked in the clearly marked "Ambulance Parking Only" spot at Surrey Memorial Hospital. Forty five minutes later, when he and his partner returned to their ambulance, they met two irate taxi drivers who were sputtering...my coworker just drove away without looking at or talking to them.
Perfect! No one can truly complain when you say nothing rude and simply park behind someone who parks in your spot.
I did it yesterday at Fraser Valley Cancer Centre; pamphlet supplier parked in one of the ambulance spots, and another ambulance parked beside him. So, I just parked with my nose a foot from his bumper.
He was sheepish. I watched him through the window as the other ambulance departed, leaving him space to do a 12 point turn to squeeze out beside me.
Ha ha.
Those spots are there so our patients don't get too cold/wet/etc getting from the back of the ambulance to the door of the building. NOT for your convenience.

On another note, I really hate going to the Cancer Centre. It's too sad. They try really hard to staff it with friendly, smiling, caring, genuine people, and to fill the walls with quilts and paintings and cheerful objects, and to be prompt and stuff, but every time I go in there I feel like I'm drowning in chemotherapy, wigs, and sad, sick people. I just don't want to be there in my future, and being there now reminds me of the possibility. And the people are just so sad, despite cheerful surroundings. Naturally. Cancer sucks.

Sad stuff happens everywhere, I guess. Christmas day in the Chilliwack ER looked like this:
Sick lady in her 70s calls an ambulance for knee pain and goes unconscious shortly after ambulance arrival. Diagnosed with congestive heart failure, pneumonia, and possible heart attack and intubated in the ER. Waited there for an ICU bed.
Shortly thereafter sick lady's daughter, who is a regular of ours, calls an ambulance because her abdominal pain is out of control. She is waiting for a liver transplant. We pick her up 2 or 3 times a week. SICK lady. Quite sick on christmas day. They put her in the ER bed beside her mom. I think it took them an hour or two to realize they were related.
Then, gentleman in his 40s calls an ambulance for massive, crushing chest pain. Heart stops beating. Ambulance crew starts CPR and shocks him, but he is still dead when they arrive (*technical point: when one's heart has stopped this is considered 'dead'...though one is not actually dead until pronounced dead by a physician...regardless of whether CPR is being performed...people often don't understand that when we're trying to get someone 'back' it is because they are already dead*), still doing CPR. The man's father, in his 60s, meets the ambulance at the door, sees his son is in cardiac arrest and getting CPR, and collapses with a heart attack of his own. I'm not kidding! So these gentlemen were in the ER side by side, too. This is christmas day, which may surprise you. ERs are always busy on Christmas. People often have heart attacks or strokes, or attempt suicide, around Christmas.

I have more info on the situation with our charity parolee case.
Apparantly his parole officer told him to stop accepting gifts from us, since his basic needs are supplied by the federal government. Apparantly someone on lifetime parole has usually done a violent crime that involved someone's death, and this death was usually premeditated.
One of my coworkers had a strong argument when he pointed out that the family of this man's victim(s) would probably not appreciate charity drives in honour of their loved ones' killer.
Also, PR for the ambulance service would be at an all time low if the public got wind that we were fundraising for a killer.
He's also getting sicker. In and out of hospital. He doesn't have much time left.
I know this story touched a nerve with us and with you, so I thought I'd share what I knew.
My statement today that all people are capable of murder given a certain set of circumstances or experiences and a certain lack of coping mechanisms was met with blank stares and some incredulity. Those "Good box" "Bad box" classifications are so, so strong. Funny how people don't really believe themselves capable of being in the bad box. Denial ain't just a river in Egypt. If only we could see that there are no boxes. Just people with good and bad all mixed up together like porridge, and potential for grand acts of good and vicious acts of evil. We have such vast potential; limitless potential, almost, in either direction.
Atom bombs. Murder. Rape. Destructive words for our loved ones. Selfishness. Greed. Unchecked wealth. Environmental squalor. Rudeness.
Mother Teresa's home for the dying. Love. Loyalty. Doctors without borders. Recycling. Space travel. Art. Adoption. Kindness.

On another note, I've now befriended my nemisis, Ernie's wife. Remember how she made me so mad I was shaking, within ten minutes of meeting her? Now she's nice. She's going to make me a quilt for my baby (that's not why I like her: she's nice now. I guess I proved myself).

1 comment:

Roboseyo said...

you're awesome, mel!

you might be right about everything, too -- we should start a club.