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Showing posts from February, 2019

4.7. Code Red = Fire

To say one's life (or the state of the nation) is a dumpster fire is too vague. What, exactly, is burning? We have to find the cause/flammable material and deal with it as is appropriate.
Class A fire: ordinary trash fire, dumpster fire. Flammable materials include bills, marked-up novel manuscripts, bureaucratic paperwork, annoying ordinary things gone wrong. Extinguish with water, monoammonium phosphate, class A extinguisher. Don't take things personally, pay the bills, sign the papers, put it behind you.

Class B fire: flammable liquids and gas fires. Drama, fighting, tantrums. Do not give histrionic people more fuel or water, which will only increase their surface area. Cover with a blanket. Class B extinguisher. Walk away and do not engage.

Class C fire: electrical fire. Sometimes the (internet, human) connection is like an addiction, and rumors, gossip and obsessions do more harm than good. Facebook Insta Snap Tweet Tinder. Unplug; cut off power source. Do not use water.

4.6. Ship of Fools

In the Middle Ages, people with mental illness were sent off into the open sea in a sailing boat to search for their lost rationality. 
The ship of fools is a Bosch painting, the title of several songs, and the name of a few modern films. In The Republic, Plato describes a gang of foolish sailors who take possession of a ship, chain up the captain and throw people they don't like overboard. More interesting, perhaps, is Foucault's discussion of Narrenschiff, ship of fools, in Madness and Civilization, as the symbol of the (changing) status of madness.

Madness was fascinating because it was unknown, and the "madman" seemed to possess some kind of forbidden knowledge that related to the end of the world. Madness, like death, was a mystery, and in a religious era, that also became linked to the theme of apocalypse.

That's what Bird Box was about, right? That maybe "mad" people aren't actually mad, but are the only ones who saw the truth this entire ti…

4.5. EKG = electrocardiogram

Because studying all the abnormal heart rhythms is giving us paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia, here're some EKG poems instead.

V-Fib

The dangerous valentine’s fib
what she saw-
           toothed           electrical chaos
hogging oxygen
 no output
rapidly fatal to relationship in
           3-5 minutes

faint pulseless apneic
no blood pressure
           absent heart
acidosis
seizures

fixed, dilated pupils
cold, mottled skin

 defibrillate--
           won't work if heartless tho



Ventricular Asystole

Standstill
           no impulses left
no depolarization QRS contraction
only P
           sometimes not even that
electrical           silence

inadequate cerebral perfusion oxygenation
 unconscious
after cardiac arrest comes respiratory arrest
resuscitation

CAB it but
   don’t shock
           don’t shoot
implantable converter
           no magnet
vest that if conscious
           press button to prevent shock
otherwise a donkey’s kick to chest
Versed 
           Verse 
           V

4.4. BLS Algorithm = Make Your Own Adventure

The theme song to this post is Stayin' Alive, at about 100 beats per minute, the recommended rhythm for high quality chest compressions.

Well, you can tell by the way I use my walk
I'm a nursing student, no time to talk
Bed alarms loud and bedpans warm
Answering call lights since 6:30 this morn
And now it's all right, it's okay
And you may look the other way
We can try to understand
CPR's effect on man
Whether you're a student or whether you're a patient
You're stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Feel the epi pushin' and people compressin'
And we're stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Ah, ha, ha, ha, stayin' alive, stayin' alive
Ah, ha, ha, ha, stayin' alive
Code Blue somewhere, somebody help me
Somebody help me, yeah
Life goin' nowhere, somebody help me, yeah
I'm stayin' alive

The Basic Life Support & Advanced Cardiac Life Support algorithms are probably some of the darkest flow charts available outside of thos…

4.3. Circles of Trust

Intimate distance is 0-18 inches, personal distance 18-40 inches, social distance 4-12 feet, and public distance more than 12 feet. But that's just physical space.

The tricky kind of space, with invisible walls erected all the way to the clouds, hidden bear traps and quicksand that surprise visitors, and boundaries that crumble when they're most needed--that's all metaphor.

Whose negative words do you let in when you shouldn't? Who should you reach out to more? Whom should you hold close? (This is becoming a terrible who/whom grammar exam.) If Kevin no longer sparks joy, but instead incites murderous rage or brings endless dilute tears, maybe he needs to go out with the other boxes of stuff you Marie Kondo-ed to the Goodwill.

In a world of strangers, room full of acquaintances, lifetime of relationships come and gone, how many people remain in your inner circle of trust? Two? Three? Now that one has died and is forever watching over you, how many remain? 
You are Freud…