Friday, January 28, 2011

The Walrus

Jack and I made a little field trip tonight...he to wield a pair of pliers, and I to laugh maniacally. Oh, and take pictures, too.
Why there are porcupines here, I'm just not sure. Porcupines like trees, right? Since trees are pretty scarce in this area, you would think porcupines would be, too. But no. Even in areas where there are no trees for miles, you will still find the occasional porky roadkill during the summertime. In the winter they hibernate, but when the chinook comes to town, they wake up ready to party. Or brawl, as the case may be.

Finley and Anika, the poor little dears, have never been up close to a real, live porcupine. Hopefully they won't again, ever. I like to think they learned some valuable lessons.

Tina got Anika's 10 quills out fine by herself, but found Finley rather daunting. More quills, less courage. Much less. She spent most of the time having narrow escapes from getting various body parts impaled. Eyeballs, neck, fingers, and so much more.

Finally, Uncle Jack had to hold Nephew Finley down and let Tina take a turn with the pliers. Never one to discriminate, Finley immediately turned from biting his uncle, to biting the hand that feeds him. Jack covered his eyes, but Finley wasn't fooled. With his keen sense of smell, he could tell when the Hand of Doom drew near.

By the end, 34 natural javelins had been wrenched from the tattered flesh. As soon as the pain was relieved, Finley showed his newfound wisdom by.........

....begging frantically at the front door to be let out and get another shot at the intruder.

Noni Beth

Monday, January 24, 2011

Taking a Powder

Gastron’s friends were very busy Thursday night. One, Allan "Al" R. Jee, had a critical asthma attack, another, Ursula Tureen, had severe abdominal distress of unknown origin, but she was going into shock, and yet another, O. Jennifer Beum, was….well, we’ll get to that.

Through each of the scenarios, our teacher felt that we were being too hesitant to put our hands on our patients. Perhaps that was because we were being too hesitant to put our hands on our patients. Only one team (not mine) even visually examined U. Tureen's abdomen. The rest of us assumed it was a medical problem, instead of verifying for ourselves that she didn't have a pencil sticking out or something.

The cure for too little touching is more touching...lots of it. The teacher gloved us up, paired us off into two-person teams, and stood over us with a container of baby powder and a fierce expression. "You are going to do head-to-toe examinations on each other. When you are finished, they had better have baby powder from head to toe, too."

Under those eagle eyes, we dared not hesitate. Beginning with enough hair powdering to re-create an 18th century throne room, we worked our way up, down, and sideways, replenishing our handfuls every few seconds. The results were pretty spectacular, let me tell you. Our doctor's husband had one ear that had clearly been examined more closely than any other ear in history.

With powder drifting behind me at every step, I wafted my way to my last scenario. "Is the scene safe?" I asked Ursula, who was now guarding a door instead of her abdomen. Her cryptic reply, "You'll have to be the judge," should have tipped me off.

Across the office, O. Jennifer Beum, or Oksa-Jen as she preferred to be called, sat next to her tank, a nasal canula already in place. She was holding a cigarette.

I walked in and set my things down next to her, trying to introduce myself, but very distracted by the ash drooping from the coffin nail between her fingers. "Hi. Um."

"Did ya say who ya were?" Oksa-Jen snapped.

"I'm, um, Noni," I gulped. Cigarette. Oksa-Jen. Oxygen. I may have actually leaned over her shoulder at that point, squinting at the end to see if it was really smoking. "Um, um..." It sure looked like it was smoking. "Can I ask you to put that out before you blow up the whole room?" I finally asked.

"No you can NOT," Oksa-Jen exploded. "I've been smoking all day long, and nothing's blown up yet."

Galvanized at last into action, I abandoned my bags of equipment, calling over my hastily retreating shoulder, "You just let me know when you're finished, and I'll come back."

I fully expected her to put out her cigarette so I could complete my examination, but no. "That was it," the now-jovial Oksa-Jen laughed. "You're done."

Yeah, I'm done all right, especially if I peer myopically over the shoulders of any real patients smoking while on oxygen. It only marginally cheered me to learn that the cigarette I had so closely examined there by the oxygen tank, was a special magic cigarette from a magic store in Las Vegas.

Obviously I'm going to have to work on scene safety a little more. Almost always before I've had other, more experienced people to go into a scene first, and if they were there, it was safe. Time to become a bit more independent. There's not always going to be someone else there to point out the danger of the Oksa-Jen Beums of the world.

Thus for our homework assignment of writing our own scenario, I'm thinking a focus on scene safety would be good. Don't tell my classmates.

Sheepishly and explosively,

Noni Beth

The Ends

Friday, January 21, 2011

The Pit Stop

I told him, I did. While we were still in Plentywood, late at night on the way home from a hard day's work, I did indeed mention that I was in rather strait need of a facility. A washroom. Los banos.

Apparently distracted, Jack left town without helping me out. Determined to persevere, I clenched my teeth and held on. Only 24 miles to go! The weather was pretty bad, so we weren't able to travel very fast, but still I held on. Up and down the hills, through the storm, I held on.

At last I decided that if home was more than about 3 miles away, I was going to have to ask Jack to stop, and expose certain pink skin to wind chills of about -25F.

After forever and a half, we came upon the next mile marker: 9. We had come only nine interminable miles. Great. Even after I told Jack I had to stop, oh, approximately now!!! he kept going several more miles, past perfectly good side roads. I was fair perishing by the time he finally turned off the highway.

Relief was almost within my grasp when Jack gently eased the car to the edge of the road. Suddenly, with a horrible sucking sound, an evil ditch genie ate almost half the SUV. Of course that whole stuck thingy was the main thing on Jack's mind, but I still had only one thing on mine.

Climbing precariously up the steep slope and out the driver's door, since that seemed faster than jumping out my window and wading through almost 4 feet of snow, I got right down to brass tacks. It's amazing how little you notice the biting north wind on your gluteus when the situation has reached that level of desperation. But you'll probably want to just take my word for that.

How bad are the ditches here right now? Well, today Jack scared a deer along the road, and in fright it leaped into the ditch...plunging in up to its neck.

John John's Tow Service was called into action once more. (The poor fellow was sick, so I'm going to have to make extra banana bread now.) First he pulled us frontways, but we were only going deeper into the ditch genie's maw, so he tried backways. It took a bit, and stuff (like me) got thrown all around the car, but we made it out.

Now Jack calls me his little P. P. Princess. I just smile and think to myself, "You drove into the ditch." But I don't say it. I'm far more dignified than that. And besides, if I did, I know he would remind me of why he was stopping. I think that makes it a draw.

Cutting a wide swath,
Noni Beth


The Plentywood EMT class of 2011 is proud to announce the successful arrival, over and over and over again, of Baby Franklin.

EMT's successfully delivered Baby Franklin on at least eight separate occasions. His father, Frank Breech, Sr., and his mother, Foo T. Ling-Breech, were delighted to welcome him into their family. His older sister, Parshelle Breech, just turned three.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


On December 29, Tiggy turned the fabulously huge age of 12. She's almost as tall as I am, with poor Damon not far behind. Oops, did I say that out loud? Don't worry, Damon. You'll grow soon. Eventually.

For months now, Tiggy has been faithfully bringing home her flute, a school rental, and practicing it. Without even being forced! Her hard work was rewarded by receiving her own flute for her birthday, still in the package, never before played. (Believe me, I was tempted. I would even have removed every single fingerprint and lip print.)

That made it possible to do a flute trio with our pastor on New Year's Day. Soon Tina will join in, making it a flute quartet. Before long, I'm even going to have to practice to keep up, never mind stay ahead. Tiggy's come a long way from "Twink GASP le GASP twink GASP le GASP lit GASP le GASP star, GAAAAAAAASP, How GASP I GASP won GASP der GASP what GASP you GASP are. GAAAAAAAAAASP"

Devon was less than pleased. The only thing that marginally consoled him was the thought that it was only a few more weeks till his birthday, and then HE would be the one getting the presents. But not a flute.

Or a tuba.

Until the next adventure,
Noni Beth

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Phone Call of Doom 2

To not keep you in suspense overnight, no matter how amusing it might be for me, he is home just fine.

The snow had been so thick and ooky today that he took our 4wd vehicle to work instead of his 2wd work van. In said 4wd vehicle, he drove into some people's driveway out in the middle of nowhere. Now, by most standards, even our home in town is in the middle of nowhere. This house was really, REALLY in the middle of nowhere. As in, look around and see miles of white prairie in every direction.

Suddenly, the tires sank into one spot in the driveway, and refused to budge. On the bright side, I had "coincidentally" put the snow shovel in the back. On the dim side, the people weren't home to meet him for the service call. On the dimmer side, his phone battery was about to die.

After sending out the previously transcribed phone call, Jack was able to milk out 2 more brief calls, each one providing just a little more information than the last. By the end of the third one, I had enough to guide John John in. Meanwhile, Jack managed to dig his way out, though it took a couple hours to do it. On the dim side, John John wasted a trip. On the bright side, he got to spend some quality time with his big brother.

Going to sleep now before anything else can happen,
Noni Beth

Phone Call of Doom

Just got a call from Jack.

"Hey dear, my phone battery is about to die. Please call John John and tell him I'm stuck. I'm right by the................................"

Stay tuned. Adventure in progress.