I walked into the hospital in my karate gi, and sauntered up to the first receptionist I could see and said in a controlled monotone:
“Hello. I have dislocated my shoulder. I would like to have it set.”
She pointed the way to triage, where I repeated the above scene. The receptionist there asked a few questions and lead me into the back. On the way there I ran in to Fred’s wife, Cheryl.
“Hey Coons! I didn’t know you were in town! What are you doing here?” asked Cheryl.
“Getting repairs,” I told her.
I was brought to one of the side rooms in the ER and laid on the bed, where I spent the next few two hours awkwardly shifting around trying to make myself comfortable, but couldn’t, largely due to the swelling and muscle spasms and whatnot.
It was at this time that the endorphins wore off.
“Hello,” said the doctor who had come to see me.
“I dislocated my shoulder!” I shouted through clenched teeth. “I need you to put it back!”
“Ok. My name is Dr. Anderson,” he tells me. “This will all be over shortly…”
“Alright! Let’s do this!” I told him, as I chomped down on my wallet, so I wouldn’t bite through my tongue. Dr. Anderson stared at me blankly.
“Oooookay… we just need to get some x-rays, and then we can get started.”
Dr. Anderson leaves, and the phlebotomist comes in, stating that he needs to give me a saline drip.
Fun fact: phlebotomists don’t always go to school. In some places, it’s all done as on-the-job training. As in, they just take interested parties off the street and show them where your blood vessels are, and let them slide metal pipes into them.
This is one of the reasons why I’ve never been real big on getting stabbed. I prefer to be the one doing the stabbing, as most people have it coming.
“Do I really need this?” I asked the stabber.
“Yeah, it makes it easier to administer IV drugs,” he tells me.
“Proceed,” I told him. I normally abstain from IV drugs, but at the moment, I was open to try new things.
So I allowed myself to be willingly stabbed and hooked up to tubes and furniture, leaving me with no usable arms. While this was going on, Joe was giving my personal information to one of the clerks who needed it to fill out all the paperwork needed to treat me. I spent most of the stabbing time shouting corrections at Joe. Mostly little things that Joe might not have learned in our eleven years of friendship, like I really do have drug allergies; and that Barbie is my sister, and not my mom.
Shortly thereafter, Cheryl came back and started preparing a syringe.
“What’s that?” I ask.
She told me what it was, but I was not familiar with that.
“It’s ten times stronger than opium,” Cheryl tells me.
“So… its heroin,” I tell her.
“It’s not heroin!” snaps Cheryl.
“Are there supposed to be bubbles in that syringe?” I ask.
“What? There are so many better ways I can use my nurse powers to kill you,” said Cheryl, as she filled my arm with bubbly opium. “You watch too many movies.”
So I sat there for a while with gritted teeth, waiting for the opiates to work their magic.
“Is there anything I can do Coons? Anything I can get you?” asked Joe.
“Yeah, take some pictures of this for the website,” I told him. “This should make for a few epic posts. I shall call it the Shoulder Saga!”
Joe’s camera was in the car, but he had his camera phone. The results were horrifying.
Afterwards, Joe and I lounge about the room. Our conversation was mostly shop talk, about our respective grad programs. I start explain my research to him, and right when I started to get to the good part, is when the rumbling started. It was the x-ray tech, and she’s a story all her own…
This is Chapter III of the Shoulder Saga. Please read Chapter IV.