Monday, February 14, 2011

Newsflash: This actually isn't funny...

I'm a little astounded by how far we need to go in educating people about signs of stroke. When I saw this video, I was very alarmed - but based on the comments and how it went viral, seems most folks thought this was funny.

I like funny. This isn't it.

As of this writing, I'm not sure anyone knows whether this reporter was suffering a stroke...but that's not really the point. The point is, she exhibited some tell-tale signs - and way too many otherwise intelligent people had a good laugh.

Am I out of line, here? Watch the video and tell me what you think.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Ow. Help?

Every few years I like to experience the emergency services at Valley Medical Center for myself, to make sure the excellent care I always tell people about is for real. Last weekend, Saturday 3am seemed like a super time…nothing much on TV, ya know.

I’ll leave it a mystery how it exactly happened, but I’ll say this: If you gave me a hundred bungee cords and had me try to replicate the accident—on purpose—I’d never manage it again. It was in so tightly and deeply, there was no way I was getting it out without expert help.

So off we went to VMC’s Emergency Department…my friend Lydia drove, thankfully. She was visiting from the Southland, and I think she was pretty surprised to see how efficient and, yes, cheerful everybody was in OUR “county hospital”. Many—okay, most—folks waiting were in worse shape than I was and had priority, but it couldn’t have been an hour before they were taking x-rays of my finger to see if I’d gone through the bone or something else important.

By this time I was pretty freaked out. If you know me, you know that playing guitar is more important to me than pretty much anything else I use that finger for, so you can imagine my relief when the news came back that I’d missed serious damage by, oh, the width of an eyelash or two.

I’m not used to being the least chipper person in the room, and it really helped that all the doctors and nurses and techies around me were so upbeat. Maybe they thought this case was pretty cool. I wasn’t looking (believe me!) when they finally got the bungee hook out, but in no time I was anesthetized, sterilized, trussed up and we were on our way.

Yes, this wasn’t a life and death situation like so many others that come through the doors (or land on the roof via helicopter) at VMC every day, but I cannot thank the team enough for saving my finger.

Maybe you have a VMC Emergency story more compelling than mine (most are, I recon). Feel free to share if you like at , as we at the VMC Foundation pass on the kudos when we can. Until next time, make sure your bungee cords have those rubber safety tips on each end. It could save your weekend.