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Of Flying Furs, Pill Guns, And Feline Stomatitis

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Last November we had to take our youngest kittay, Twitter, to the vet to get a number of teeth extracted because she suffers from feline stomatitis. The tip-off was a combination of her not gaining weight and really really really really really bad breath.

Tweet_recoveryWhen Twitter was done, she came out with around 10 less teeth and really frigging adorable photo of her in the recovery room.

So not surprisingly… Ripples seemed to have some dental issues similar to Tweety‘s. Poppy brought her in for a vet visit two Saturdays ago and had the same procedure scheduled for the Princess this past Friday.

Ripples_DentistryPart of the routine leading up to the dental surgery and then after the surgery is the administration of anti-biotics via a “pill gun”… which really is just a wide bore syringe used to shoot the pills down the kitty’s gullet. Pilling Tweety was a real chore. First, we had to catch her. Then, we would wrap her up in a towel. Then, she would fight against the pill gun, refuse to swallow the pills, and then finally after swallowing would push off of me with her rear claws extended into a galloping dash away from us with fur flying.

Pilling Ripley is a bit different. First, we have to snatch her from a comfortable posiiton. Then, I have to give her a BIG hug. Then, I have to hold her tightly as Poppy shoots the pills down her gullet. After that, it’s hugs and smooches before she leaps off of me and usually onto the bed. Usually I’d say that no one ever loses in a hug fight… but in this case, Ripley is a total medicated loser. Pretty sad when my best claim to victory is over giving my cat her pills, huh?

The thing is, I don’t think she really minds all that much…

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We didn’t get an adorable recovery room photo of Ripley, so that one will have to do. She also only lost one tooth… the rest just needed cleaning. Go figure.

Oh… and hey Georgie… you’re next!!!

Just One More Thing…

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Tomorrow Apple is set to make their annual huge iPhone announcement and, according to the majority of analysts, debut their wearable device commonly referred to as the iWatch.

One of the phrases that Steve Jobs had made famous during his second tenure at Apple, most notably at these types of presentations, was the phrase “Just one more thing….” He used it for Facetime, the iPods compatability with Windows, and for the Apple TV. With each “just one more thing…” Apple has repeatedly shown that it is more than just one thing.

I recently realized that many people, for a variety of reasons, put themselves into a box. They categorize themselves as being one thing. Whether they identify their profession foremost, or their hobby, or their place in a family organization, there is a focal point on one identity.

moiYet, this is really only one piece of what comprises a person. I often wonder why people who are smart, creative, and energetic only consider themselves to be defined by one aspect of their personality. They allow that aspect to dominate while everything else becomes repressed. These are also the same people who don’t see how everyone else is more than one things as well. It maddens me to a certain degree, especially when they relegate me to being just one thing.

The truth is that Apple isn’t the only one with “just one more thing…” to it.

We all are.

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.