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The #IceBucketChallenge Answered

Ice Bucket Cover

So… recently I was “tagged” or “nominated” or “challenged” to take the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge by one of the supervisors at my agency.

Here I am meeting the challenge…

Ice Bucket CoverDoes it suprise anyone that I was a Film major in college? One of the things that has bothered me about a lot of the videos I’ve seen is where they where bathing suits or clothing that was put on obviously in preparation. I did no such thing.

‘Cause I’m internet hardcore.

So if you haven’t heard or seen anything about the #IceBucketChallenge, then seriously what rock have you been hiding under? The amazing part to me is that I remember seeing my friend “Rotor” Ray do it on Facebook what seems like months ago. Now it’s gained some serious traction and virality. The people at the ALS Association must be very pleased… over $70 million dollars has been raised through the campaign.

Of course, the true success isn’t in the amount of money raised or the number of people who receive a cold drenching. The true success is in raising the awareness and education people about a deadly and debilitating disease.

It’s About Opportunity

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A set of circumstances that make it possible to do something.

An alignment of conditions that offer the potential for an attainable accomplishment.

When the state of affairs are in such a manner that change is achievable.

Opportunity.

It’s what we’re afforded each and every day working in EMS. We are given the opportunity to change someone’s life for the better. We don’t always get the cardiac arrest, the traumatic motor vehicle collision, or the imminent respiratory arrest where that opportunity exists. It lives on each and every call we go on. It’s up to us to recognize it and make the most of it.

I’ve had a lot of opportunities recently. Actually, it seems like a flood. Some better defined and identifiable than others, but opportunities none the less. I’ve honestly felt like the last few weeks has been a failure after a failure after yet another failure. A constant failing of making the most of those opportunities, missing some entirely, and not getting my usual wins for such things. If you asked (or actually to a large extent still ask) me how I would rate it on a scale of 1 to 10, 1 being a horrorshow and 10 being that unattainable utopia, I probably would have given it a -2. That’s how it feels like it was going with a number of signs pointing even lower on that scale.

Yet as someone who understands acutely the power of perception and the difference that a perspective can make on a situation, I asked someone else how they would rate it. I figured they’d be kind and gentle, offering a 4 or maybe even a 5 when they really want to say a 2 or a 3.

But they gave it an 8.

So either my perspective is truly warped… or they are being uberly Mother Theresa like kind. I’ll put money on the uberly Mother Theresa kindness, but that still keeps me at around a 4 or 5 which is still +6 higher than I had it pegged at… and for the first time in what feels like weeks, I felt as if maybe I had indeed accomplished something. Is it perfect? No, of course not, nothing is… but it’s still better than nothing.

More importantly today… I’ll have another opportunity to make it better.

froot_loops_colorI know, I know… it’s more rambling. It’s more cryptic. But it’s still cathartic… therapeutic… provides a chance for reflection… and although it DOES end up on Facebook as a link, the “likes” are undoubtedly more authentic than those Facebook Posts that do pretty much the same thing but get seen by WAY more people because of the fraudulence behind the “liking”.

With that, I’m out as the sun starts to creep up… I got a road test to do… so if this is my last ever blog post… well you’ll know that test didn’t go as planned either.

Be well.

It’s A Change Thing

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2014-02-13 10.06.22-2Change.

It’s that thing that we all say we want, but we all hate.

It’s what we think will make us calmer, but causes anxiety along the way.

It’s what we think is the end, but is really just the first step.

Going through a couple of those right now myself.

Not something I can openly and easily talk about, or would want to… yet.

Stop. Relax. Nothings wrong with me physically other than those chronic conditions. Mentally my situation is normal, still certifiable, but really that shouldn’t be breaking news to anyone.

It just got me to thinking about how often we want things to change, to be different, to be other than what they are and then when either the opportunity to make that happen or it just happens organically we end up professing hatred, having anxiety, and fearing the unknown of what it was we thought we wanted in the first place. We are a complex, indecisive, and contradiction riddled species.

Yet, here’s the other thing about change, no matter how big it is… it’s really still the same thing at the core.

Sure the cosmetics and look can change, which is the most obvious and jarring at first but soon becomes familiar.

You can change the methods and processes, which seems insurmountable and hard to learn but eventually becomes routine.

You can change the culture, which always seems to hardest to do but with consistency, a standard, and time can happen anywhere.

The one thing that doesn’t ever really change at the core is the purpose.

Which brings me to the purpose of EMS. If you’ve read my book (now in its Second Edition) 25 Things They Should Have Taught You In Medic School… But Didn’t, then you probably already know where I’m going with this.

When change happens in EMS we fear it, loathe it, and decry what it is that we actually have the opportunity to do in the life of a patient every time we get assigned that call.

Essentially, we hate ourselves.

Thankfully the patients don’t (all) hate us. Their okay with change if their in a bad spot, but are usually against it when they don’t necessarily realize they are in a bad spot. There will always be those RMAs, there will always be those belligerents who don’t realize just how much they actually did drink, and there will always be those who at first are opposing, but eventually become receptive. Every patient is different.

Every EMS garage is different.

It’s important to remember that.

It’s important to stop hating ourselves.

It’s important that if we’ve spent a life eating chicken, that at least we try the steak and put aside the greatest fear within us… that we may like it.

I know… it’s rambling. I know… it’s cryptic. But it’s cathartic… therapeutic… and more importantly, at least it isn’t on Facebook garnering wonderous comments and the fraudulent likes.

Be well.

My Theorem Of Birthdays

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I’ve had this so called “Theorem Of Birthdays” for quite awhile, but for some reason I can’t seem to find it in the archives. It possibly got wiped back in 2012 when I got hacked but, luckily, I happen to remember it. So here is how I view birthdays and what their significance is:

    May The Fortieth Be With You Cake featuring Angry Bird Wookie
  • 1 Year Old – your chances of dying from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome drops dramatically
  • 7 Years Old – it’s a luck number in many cultures
  • 10 Years Old – you’ve made it a full decade and are in double digits… where you will remain the vast majority of the rest of your time on this earth
  • 12 Years Old – it’s the last year you will be “cute” until you become a “rotten” teenager
  • 13 Years Old – you’re officially a “rotten” teenager
  • 16 Years Old – parents following society mythos declare it as your “Sweet 16” even though you are still a “rotten” teenager
  • 18 Years Old – you can now vote for government officials, be drafted, and get an actual driver’s license instead of a permit BUT you still can’t drink
  • 19 Years Old – your last year as a “rotten” teenager
  • 20 Years Old – you’re no longer a “rotten” teenager, but rather a young adult
  • 21 Years Old – you can finally drink legally!
  • 25 Years Old – you get out of “Assigned Risk” with the car insurance companies

After turning 25 years old it becomes a near desolate wasteland with only two things left for you to look forward to:

  • 50 Years Old – you can join AARP!
  • 65 Years Old – you can FINALLY start getting that Social Security money back!

So yeah, that’s my “Theorem Of Birthdays“.

In other words, I hate them.

But then again, it is the only time I get Cookie Puss

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… so it can’t be ALL bad.

May The Fourth Be With You!

Booby_Fett_and_I

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calm-you-shall-keepToday happens to be Star Wars Day!!! This is as official of a geek holiday as it’s going to get, so be sure to enjoy it as I will… with my Millenium Falcon ice cubes cooling my Death Sticks beverage while I consume all that is holy and good in this world and the ones in galaxies far far away (Episodes II-VI).

I know right now there is a lot of speculation, rumors, and cool photos of table reads regarding the upcoming Star Wars Episode VII. I know this because my own mother mentioned it to me yesterday in passing, so the excitement for Episode VII has spilled over the brim of the internet and is now manifesting itself physically in the average every day world. I won’t lie, I am in fact looking forward to it, but I won’t get my hopes up too high.

Remember Phantom Menace? Yeah, exactly.

Star-Wars-VII-CastI’m still going to see it. Heck, I saw Amazing Spiderman 2 yesterday, and if I’m willing to go see that piece of trash yawn fest then it’s obvious I’m not as discerning theatrically as perhaps I once was… but that’s neither here nor there.

Yesterday MTV unveiled this very cool poster with all of the known cast members from Episode VII. I know, it makes you excited, doesn’t it? I won’t pretend it isn’t cool, because it is actually very cool. Yet despite all the rumors and cool creative derivative pieces helping the hype… the bottom line is I’m keeping my Tauntauns on and will wait until I see the actual whole movie before declaring it a piece of all that is holy and good in this world and the ones in galaxies far far away.

Because that’s just how I roll. Like a Fett.

May the Fourth be with you…

Booby_Fett_and_I

1,000 Fanatical Followers… And Counting

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IMG_6282So late last week I crossed one of those “Social Media Milestones” that are supposed to be an indicator that you’ve “made it”.

I got my 1,000th follower on Twitter on my personal account @DavidKonig.

It’s something that at one time would have been celebrated, ballyhooed, and a sure sign that I was a golden tweeting deity!

Yeah… not so much. I’ve been on Twitter a long, long, long time. In all that time I’ve always questioned its effectiveness. Sure for in the moment messaging it can have a wide reach, but the ability to have a long term effect is too reliant on the self-absorbed masses. Still, I would prefer that than the Facebook filtering that goes on.

So yeah, I have 1,000 fanatical followers (a term I’ve relatively hated from the beginning because of its cult innuendo) and I’m still going to be counting them, but don’t expect me to get all over excited about it. Heck, it took me days to even think about blogging about it! So yeah, really, no biggie.

1,000 followers isn’t cool. 1,000,000,000 followers… now THAT’s cool (and a sure sign you paid for some of those)!!!

Yeah, I couldn’t resist using that line.

My Prediction On WWE’s Big Announcement Tomorrow Night In Vegas

Vince McMahon

It shouldn’t, or at least I hope it doesn’t, surprise anyone that I’m a relatively long time wrestling fan. How old you ask?

I saw Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka at Madison Square Garden live kind of old.

Taking Wrestler Mark Henry Out On A Stretcher

Taking Wrestler Mark Henry Out On A Stretcher

So the other day I got a text message from WWE (because yeah, I get “Breaking News” alerts via text message from them) about a press conference tomorrow night from Las Vegas that will “change the WWE forever.” So right away, I figured it was probably going to be either an announcement for Royal Rumble (the next PPV) or something to do with the WWE Network. The Press Conference would be viewable through the WWE app.

Then I was reminded that CES is going on in Vegas for the week. So that got me thinking… what if they were going to announce the WWE Network as a streaming service? Make it a channel or app similar to Netflix and HBO Go, available through Roku and/or Apple TV or on your mobile device whether it be tablet of phone? A network where you did not need a cable subscription… a truly a la carte’ channel?

If that’s what WWE is doing, not only do they stand to revolutionize wrestling but ALL of entertainment as well.

Oh, and if I’m right… remember you read it here first.

Counting Sheep

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I snore.

Loudly.

No… not that loud… LOUDER!

So while I was at my doctor to fight my latest round of cellulitus, he asked me about how I had been sleeping. So I told him that honestly I hadn’t slept so well the last few nights, and that I snore. So, he wanted me to go for a sleep study since I had never had one before. Basically, as he explained it, you go spend the night in a hotel like room where they monitor you during your sleep and develop a huge reported to find out what’s going on when you’re not awake. Not surprisingly he has some concerns about sleep apnea, so I agreed with the idea of yet another night in a foreign bed if, for nothing else, it would cut down on my snoring.

IMG_5595So here’s the thing with doing a sleep study… it’s unbelievably unnerving. It’s easily a ten minute plus process to attach all these wires and electrodes to monitor you throughout the night. They use traditional electrodes along with this white goopy substance that feels almost like rubber cement, but nowhere near as firm. Once all the wiring is done and your nose is invaded by probes, there is this tremendous fear that sets upon you about actually moving, lest you unplug yourself. Try to get comfortable? Yeah, not so much. It’s a counter-intuitive situation to try to go to sleep under.

But I did it anyway.

And they only had to wake me up once to reattach a leg electrode and move wires from my chest to my back. So all in all, it wasn’t too terrible once you got past the onset of fear of movement. So now that it’s done, now I wait to see what they found while studying my sleep.

I hope its something cool… like Sasquatch.

Heart Attacked Grill

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QuadNurseIt has been around seven years now that I have wanted to go to the Heart Attack Grill©. Originally based in Arizona, the establishment had first come to my attention when a nurse’s group wanted the restaurant closed down for the Halloween costumes they had their waitresses wear. I was intrigued by the parody of a hospital setting in a world that, at that time, had seemed to go all organic.

Photo Sep 12, 8 31 17 PMThe original Heart Attack Grill© was founded 2005 in Arizona. Serving up super sized burgers by waitresses dressed in nurse halloween costumes, the establishment became the target of Nursing Associations and Nutritional Advocates alike. This did not stop it from branching out to Dallas and Las Vegas in the late naughts. After the high profile death of spokesperson for the restaurant Blair Rivera, both the Arizona and Dallas locations closed in 2011. The Las Vegas location is the last of the Heart Attack Grill© restaurants standing but is not without its share of controversy. In February of 2013 daily-patron John Alleman passed of an apparent heart attack while waiting at the bus stop outside the restaurant. Nevertheless I remained undaunted in my desire to at least experience the restaurant which remains the beacon for freedom of choice and the personification of a society consumed by its own unsated appetite for consumption.

Quadruple ByPass BurgerSo aside from it’s obvious parodic nature, year round use of Halloween costumes, unique customer attire, and imported sugary soft drinks, what could be this place’s actual claim to caloric fame? They are the originators of the Quadruple Bypass Burger©. This is four all 1/2 pound all beef patties, lettuce, an onion, 8 slices of cheese, 20 strips of bacon, and chilli. Now they don’t just slap the meat together between the buns, oh no. Each patty is prepared as if it was an individual burger and then they are all stacked between the bun piled high and staked with wooden skewers to keep it from toppling over. The burger holds the distinction of being the highest caloric burger on a menu, weighing in at 9,982 calories large!

Wowzer!

So yeah, of course I had to get one…

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Now I know what your thinking… if you ate that, you would die! Well I am living proof that you can eat it and live!

Well… okay… let’s be honest… I only had what would have equated to a Single Bypass Burger out of that Quadruple Bypass Burger. What’s the penalty for not finishing your burger? Well, in a twist on the whole “Naughty Nurse” motif, it becomes a case of the “Naughty Patient” and there is only one penalty for that…

Of course, this is all done in good parodic fun.

All in all, I love the anti-establishment motif, but the food was meh at it’s best. It does make for a FANTASTIC postcard though!

Lil Bub and I

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atStrandBooksTonight (or actually last night considering when this post is set to publish) I made a journey to the Greenwhich Village area to visit the Strand Bookstore (which boasts on their awning about having 18 miles of books) along with 299 other people for a once in a lifetime experience.

Now I know many of you are probably wondering, “Wait, doesn’t he read only ebooks now?” You’re right, I do read ebooks 99% of the time. That remaining 1% is reserved for those very special books. Books who are authored by skilled artisans of the craft containing powerful soul clenching content. It has to be a book with meaning, with purpose, and an uncanny knack for speaking to the cofe of my being.

This is one of those books.


Lil BUB’s Lil Book: The Extraordinary Life of the Most Amazing Cat on the Planet

And here I am with the author herself…

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Yes. I met Lil Bub!!!

I have to be honest, except for the Strand Books redheaded line worker/announcer who kept referring to Lil Bub as “the cat” (which is like referring to Stephen King as “the human”), it was a very pleasant and exciting experience. It’s not everyday you get to meet the cutest, amazing, adorable, internet cat sensation in the world! So thanks to Lil Bub and her cool dude Mike for coming back to New York and doing a night event!!!

Of course, the second moment of the night was when a typical New Yorker came to us on the line at the corner of 12th and Lafayette asking what everyone was doing there. I explained to him it was for Lil Bub, the cutest most famous cat on the internet, and asked if he had ever heard of her. He told me no. I then asked him if he had internet, to which he replied yes. I think he was a bit shocked to be asked if he had internet, and I covered his shock by telling him to go to LilBub.com. Silly humans.

lilbubbooksigned

So now I have a signed copy of the book, I’ve met Lil Bub, and I have the photo to prove it!

How ya like me now internet?