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Let’s Just Forget The Last 24 Hours

So, the visitors have safely traversed the continent and their luggage actually occupied the same ribbon of the space-time continuum as they did at the end of the trip. This involved a three hour round trip by car at the start because the last 40 miles by air costs an extra $500 per person for reasons known only to the demons that haunt the recesses of airlines scheduling and fees.

Then it was time to replace the flapper in the toilet because the chlorine laced local water supply “wrinkles” all flappers after a while which causes slow seepage and the noise of the tank filling every fifteen minutes as well as a spike in the water bill. A simple procedure that takes place every year or so, what could go wrong? Well, the overflow pipe could snap off as you are affixing the new flapper. So, until I can drill out all four of the bolts that attach this ancient tank to its base and fit a new valve, I’m forced to flush the toilet with a bucket. The cats are not amused.

Then there was a minor medical emergency that lasted until 4AM because the patient can’t possibly understand what the problem is and the necessary prescription to deal with the situation. No, there must be bloodletting and IVs and testing to determine that, yes, the patient does indeed need a prescription for an antibiotic course, just like every other time the situation has occurred. Having the documentation for past occurrences of the situation makes no difference. And people wonder why the health system is so expensive.


1 Steve Bates { 11.25.06 at 11:44 pm }

Ouch! Bryan, I hope your next 24 hours go much better.

I’m reminded of something a colleague said to me probably 30 years ago. He was both an MD and a technical professional, though I always had the feeling he enjoyed working on software more than fixing people. Anyway, he said, “In every medical school, there’s a required course in being a bastard. As a patient, your task is to find and deal with only those physicians who flunked that course.” May you have better luck in your next trip to the ER.

Sorry your plans for the toilet are in the toilet. Apart from replacing or adjusting floats and flappers, I’ve done a “real” toilet repair exactly once. And as far as I’m concerned, that’s it for my lifetime. Never again. Good luck with yours; when you are done, may you have a royal flush.

2 Bryan { 11.25.06 at 11:54 pm }

When a doctor finally appeared the entire process was over in under a minute with a script being written. Prior to then it was the “procedure”, would could not be deviated from, and a constant barrage of questions about possible heart problems. Five hours for what would have been dealt with by a phone call if it wasn’t a holiday.

I wasn’t the patient, but I recognized the problem because Sox has the same problem from time to time, and uses the same antibiotic.

I already had two toilets to deal with in the re-hab job, but they are the newer types with only two tank bolts. I might just get fed up and buy a new, more efficient toilet.

3 Karen { 11.26.06 at 9:38 am }

Yowza…when it rains – it pours (or comes in buckets?).

Well, I’m still on a *faint* because back in May at the beginning of the Poe days, the little bugger contracted Coccidia and Giardia. Giardia is potentially transferable to humans…and as she was pooping all OVER the place, and I had clean up duties… I had to get tested. My Dear DR. ordered a series of Other Scatter-shot tests…just to be certain of other possibilities for lab tests. It cost $25 to find BOTH these parasites in dogs…and $176 to find out if Giardia was in me (or not). And the entire bill for these couple of additional tests was $794 plus $99 for the pathology! Cripes…I would never have agreed to that IF I’d know getting raped financially was also part of the lab package!

4 Bryan { 11.26.06 at 10:14 am }

Sox gets real Bayer Cipro for the infection from the vet which costs 10% of the generic cipro for humans. The vet does the test as part of a visit in about 5 minutes.

I want to be taken to a vet if I’m sick. The vet is much nicer and much cheaper than a MD, can do his/her own lab work, and provides treats.

5 Anya { 11.26.06 at 2:01 pm }

Bryan, your Uncle Phil did not enjoy working on toilets, either. For years, we had to deal with turning the water on and off at the wall because apparently replacing the damned thing was beyond his patience. Must run in the family. 😆

6 ellroon { 11.26.06 at 2:11 pm }

I have repaired toilets, but the first one I tried my hand at was destroyed. You ah… need to tighten the tank to the bowl slowly and EVENLY or it explodes. In shards…

I have repaired flappers and chains, water sources and washers….but I think I’m done. The way we’ve remodeled our bathrooms with tile means that the toliets have to be removed from the wax washer thing on the floor to do the simplest repair. I call a plumber.

And the crap at the doctor’s office, they do all of this because you can sue their asses off. Hence mindnumbing paperwork and irritation on all sides.

7 Bryan { 11.26.06 at 3:56 pm }

There are different types of valves and some require pulling the toilet apart to get to the worn part. I do this a lot during the year and it normally takes about 5 minutes, but every so often…

Well, Ellroon, the new toilets are much lighter than the ones I normally deal with, but they also have plastic parts rather than the brass in these antiques. It was a thin wall brass tube that broke. I could have glued a plastic part back together.

8 andante { 11.29.06 at 8:12 am }

The last time I went to see my family medico for a consultation the damned nurse insisted on weighing me, checking my height, b/p, pulse, and taking my temperature.

All that just to discuss my mother’s deteriorating memory.

9 Bryan { 11.29.06 at 3:02 pm }

Procedure, Andante, you can’t do anything without following the procedure, whether it makes any sense or not. Money for nothing, as they say in the song.