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Old 05-06-2022   #681
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You Can’t Snake Your Way Into Heaven
Bizarre, Patients, Pets & Animals, USA, Vet | Healthy | July 4, 2018
(A very distraught-looking woman rushes into our emergency vet clinic with a garter snake in a shoebox. It would seem that she accidentally ran it over with her car while backing out of the driveway. The snake was horrifically mangled, but is still somehow unfortunately alive. It becomes instantly clear that it’s not going to make it.)

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but unfortunately I don’t think we can do anything to help this snake. At the very least, we can put him to sleep so at least he doesn’t have to suffer anymore.”

Woman: “I understand.”

(She looks very upset and begins crying.)

Me: “Just think of it this way. He’ll be chasing mice in Snake Heaven.”

Woman: “But snakes don’t go to Heaven! He’ll be partying down in Hell with the Devil!”

(She then walked out of the clinic, still crying, leaving me with the dying snake in the shoebox. I wish I could say that was the weirdest response that I’ve ever received when trying to comfort someone, but it’s not even close.)
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Old 05-06-2022   #682
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Birth Control Out Of Control
Bad Behavior, Medical Office, Nurses, USA | Healthy | July 4, 2018
(I live in a small town where everybody knows everybody, and we have one family practice with three or four doctors on staff. When I am 12, I have to go on an antibiotic for two weeks. The nurse tells me what to prepare for, since it is a new medicine.)

Nurse: “You may feel sleepy. You may cough more. You may have diarrhea.”

Me: “Eww!”

Nurse: “Part of the deal, I’m afraid. Do you have any questions?”

Me: “Nope.”

Mother: “No, we’re good to go.”

Nurse: “All right.” *walks is to the lobby* “I hope you feel bet– Oh! Use condoms.”

Mother: “What?!”

Nurse: “Antibiotics can negate birth control. She’ll need to use another contraceptive.”

Me: *bright red and ready to cry* “But… I don’t… I’m not…”

Mother: “She is not sexually active.”

Nurse: “She’s not on the pill?”

Mother: “No! She’s 12!”

Nurse: “You can never be too careful. [Classmate Of Mine] is due to have her first baby in a few weeks, and she’s 13. [My Name] should really start birth control after these antibiotics.”

Mother: “[My Name], are you having sex?”

Me: *mortified* “NO!”

Nurse: “Children lie.”

Mother: “And that’s what she is: a child. She hasn’t even had her first period yet.”

(While I’m waiting for the floor to open up and swallow me whole, the nurse and my mother go back and forth about my nonexistent sex life until one of the doctors comes out.)

Doctor: “What is going on out here?!”

Nurse: “[My Name] is going on antibiotics, so I told her to use condoms for a while.”

Doctor: “I… I don’t even know where to begin with that. Please forgive us Mrs. [Our Last Name], [My Name]. If you have any further questions, please call me directly.”

(The doctor handed my mother her card and mother pulled me out of the office. When we returned a few weeks later to report back about the antibiotics, we learned that the insistent nurse no longer worked there. Obviously, some children do what they want, when they want. But given that boys were still pretty gross to me, I couldn’t imagine needing birth control at that age.)
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Old 05-06-2022   #683
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Drink This, Then The Pneumonia Won’t Seem So Bad
Bad Behavior, Home, Israel, Parents/Guardians, Patients | Healthy | July 3, 2018
(I am nine years old. I have a pretty weak constitution and frequently fall ill. Every winter, like clockwork, I’ll get pneumonia, among other illnesses. I learn to recognize and become familiar with the sensation of my lungs feeling full of lead, and sharp, stabbing pain overtaking my ribcage on every inhale. I can’t breathe in enough oxygen to get out of bed. My parents choose their own methods of medical treatment for me. I’ve been bed-bound for days with pneumonia; I’ve got a high fever and am struggling to breathe. My parents have been bringing me occasional water and soup, and some seemingly random, unnamed medicines. Mom comes in, sits on the bed, and hands me a cup of medicine.)

Mom: “You need to drink this.”

(I take a sip. It’s horrifically bitter. I gag, cough, and hand it back.)

Me: “I… can’t… It’s… bitter… and gross!”

Mom: “You have to drink it, anyway; it’s medicine! You need to drink your medicine!”

Me: *panting* “I… can’t! There’s… no… way… I can… drink… that! It’s… undrinkable! It… tastes… like… poison!”

Mom: “Well, if you want to whine about it, fine.” *offhandedly* “Just know that since you’re severely ill, this is the only medicine that will save your life! If you won’t drink it, you’re going to die!“

Me: “…” *shock*

Mom: *matter-of-factly* “Yes, you are! You are so horrifically sick that you’ll die if you don’t drink all of this! Probably very quickly! Tonight, in fact! But I guess you don’t want it, so I’m just going to take this away now! I’m leaving with the medicine now, since you’re choosing to die!”

(She pauses.)

Mom: “Now. Are you suuuuuure you don’t want it?!” *wiggles the cup in front of me*

Me: *horrified fear*

(Of course, I reluctantly took the medicine back and choked it down miserably, while gagging and struggling not to throw up or expel my lungs. They continued “treating” me this way for years for every serious illness. Looking back, I think it’s likely it was some “medicinal” Russian tea, or maybe some over-the-counter unflavored children’s fever reducer like acetaminophen or Aspirin, and I really wouldn’t be surprised if they chose an unflavored version to save money. Some of the other “folk remedies” my parents inflicted on me to “treat” pneumonia were much more disturbing and gross. For some reason, they seemed to just treat these illnesses like regular colds. They never once took me to a doctor or hospital, no matter how bad it got or how high my fever, despite living in a country with free social healthcare, and otherwise regularly taking me to a doctor for check-ups and vaccines.)
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Old 05-06-2022   #684
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Walk For A Mile… Away From Them
Amsterdam, Doctor/Physician, Hospital, Ignoring & Inattentive, Jerk, The Netherlands | Healthy | July 3, 2018
(I am having a conversation with a rheumatologist.)

Rheumatologist: “One thing that you probably don’t want to hear is that it would help with some of your symptoms if you were to lose some weight.”

Me: “Yes, I agree. If you look here–” *I tap the relevant paragraph in the paperwork in front of her* “–I have detailed the years I have been struggling to lose weight and the steps I have taken, and have asked if you have any suggestions on how to try to tackle this issue.”

Rheumatologist: “It’s just that your back pain and foot pain will probably be lessened by weight loss.”

Me: “Yes, that’s one of the reasons I have been trying for so many years to lose weight.”

Rheumatologist: “Well, I would suggest you try going to a certified dietician.”

Me: “Here you can see the three I have visited, one of them a year ago, one three years before that, and one three or four years before that. I followed all of their advice to the letter and I did not lose weight.”

Rheumatologist: “Well, it’s still something you might want to try.”

Me: “Well, it isn’t covered completely by my insurance, and I am very poor, so I don’t think I’ll be able to go a fourth time right now.”

Rheumatologist: “I understand. But it might be worth a try, anyway.”

Me: “Well, I will go a fourth time when I can afford it.”

Rheumatologist: “Oh, you’ve been before?”

Me: “Yes. Three. Times.”

Rheumatologist: “Well, maybe you should try going to one via the doctor so that you know you are going to a properly-certified one.”

Me: “I will do this a fourth time when I have the money.”

Rheumatologist: “Oh, you’ve gone to one the doctor sent you to already?”

Me: “Yes. Three. Times.”

Rheumatologist: “Oh, all right. Well, what else have you tried?”

Me: “As you see here—” *tapping paperwork again* “—I have, over the past ten years, done the following: two years of sticking religiously to less than 1500 calories per day while also walking briskly for two hours each day, three attempts with professional dieticians via the doctor, the keto diet for eight months which I just stopped, three years of fasting for three days every couple of months, an intensified exercise program designed by a physiotherapist, and periodic further attempts such as ten months only drinking slim-fast for breakfast and lunch and then eating a minimal dinner. At the moment, I walk a lot and now that my sprained ankle will, after 11 months, finally allow it, I am starting my home fitness routine again, with a cross-trainer and resistance training as far as my back and other joint ills will allow.”

Rheumatologist: “You know what doesn’t cost money? Exercise!”

Me: “Yes… As I said — and wrote — I walk a lot and am working on starting my routine again. At the moment, I walk a minimum of one hour a day just in the normal way of things and I try to do more. I walk pretty fast.”

Rheumatologist: “I understand, but really, it’s not that hard to get started. Maybe just try with 20 minutes every other day and see how that treats you, then build up from there.”

Me: “I. Already. Walk. More. Than. One. Hour. Every. Day.”

Rheumatologist: “I understand. Well, I know you don’t want to hear this, but it sounds like you need to scrap all the fad diet kicks and just eat fewer calories.”

Me: “Yes, I just stopped the keto diet and I will now again do the calorie-counting, while walking more than an hour a day, but as I said, I have already tried reducing the calories and I haven’t had any luck so far. But yes, obviously I will be doing that; otherwise I would gain weight and I really don’t want to do that!“

Rheumatologist: “Well, I understand why you wouldn’t want to do it; if you eat fewer calories, you will have to suffer feelings of hunger sometimes. I understand that this is difficult, so you might not want to do it, but it really is important that you try.”

Me: “Um… Here–” *tapping paperwork again* “–is where it says that I fasted for three days every couple of months for three years. I am not afraid of feelings of hunger.”

Rheumatologist: “Well, okay… I just think it would be good for you to give it a shot. Maybe start with 20 minutes of light walking every day, and see if you can reduce your calories a bit at a time. Maybe cut out desserts a couple of times a week; start from there. Anyway, obviously it won’t cure your fibromyalgia or anything, but if you could lose some weight it would help with the daily toll on your skeletal system, and with the amount of wear-and-tear you’re dealing with that would only be a good thing. Do you have any questions?”

Me: *giving up* “Nope. I’ll do my best.”
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Old 05-06-2022   #685
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Tells Dad Jokes Religiously
Connecticut, Hospital, Parents/Guardians, Patients, Religion, Silly, USA | Healthy | July 2, 2018
(My dad is chronically unserious, even when he really ought not to be. He and my mother are in the intake of an ER, as he’s managed to injure himself somehow, and a nurse is doing the standard intake questions.)

Nurse: “Religion?”

Dad: “Orthodox Agnostic!”

(The nurse starts to write it down, then pauses and just looks confused.)

Mom: *exasperatedly* “None.”
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Old 05-06-2022   #686
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Needs A Follow-Up Follow-Up Sign
California, Ignoring & Inattentive, Medical Office, Patients, Sacramento, USA | Healthy | July 2, 2018
(I work in the back office of a large multi-specialty practice. Patients routinely come out of the rooms after their appointments and need to make follow-up appointments, which they are supposed to do with the schedulers at the front desk where they checked in; the doctors tell them so. However, they usually make a beeline for where I sit at the nurses’ station and request that I schedule their follow-up. After a few months of directing patients to the front desk, I made a bold-face, full-page sign that sits upright on the counter between my desk and the patients saying, “Follow-up appointments can be made at the Front Desk,” with a bright orange arrow directing to the front. However, this still happens several times a week

Patient: *standing directly in front of the sign and craning their neck around it to see me* “I need a follow-up appointment for six months.”

Me: *mental head-desk* “Let me just show you to the front…”
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Old 05-06-2022   #687
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Procedural Power Nap
Hospital, Patients, Salt Lake City, USA, Utah | Healthy | July 2, 2018
I went in for an outpatient procedure to have a uterine ablation. They were getting me ready for the procedure, and had already given me the stuff to make me sleepy. I asked if I could use the bathroom first. I started to get sleepy and asked again to use the bathroom.

“You’re all done. We just finished the surgery.”

It was the weirdest feeling! I literally blinked and it was over!
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Old 05-06-2022   #688
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Will Soon Eat His Words
Hospital, Jerk, New Mexico, Non-Dialogue, Patients, Stupid, USA | Healthy | July 1, 2018
One of our patients has a procedure in the morning for which he needs to not eat or drink anything for twelve hours prior. This isn’t uncommon before many procedures, and while it’s not pleasant, it’s doable for most people.

Not so with this patient. As soon as the twelve hours start, he rings his call light every fifteen minutes demanding we bring him something to eat. The first few times, his nurse goes in and explains to him why he can’t eat and what the dangers are, and tells him that if he really needs to eat, we can postpone or cancel the procedure — which is not an emergency, but not entirely unelective. He is adamant that he does not want to postpone or cancel, but he demands that we bring him something to eat.

Obviously, we can’t ignore call lights, and so I fall hours behind in my work going into his room every fifteen minutes to reiterate what he already knows: he can eat now and postpone the procedure, or not eat and have it in the morning. He refuses to accept this and insists we bring him something to eat and that we perform the procedure as scheduled.

Around 3:00 in the morning, the call lights finally stop, and we are all relieved, assuming that he has finally fallen asleep. However, while I am catching up on the work I am behind on, I turn the corner to find the stack of dinner trays waiting to be picked up by the cafeteria, and this patient eating off of a used dinner tray. Without saying anything to the patient, and with a certain amount of satisfaction, I call the nurse and tell her she should let the doctor know that his scheduled morning procedure will have to be cancelled.
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Old 05-06-2022   #689
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Making A Needling Point
Finland, Hospital, Ignoring & Inattentive, Nurses, Patients | Healthy | June 30, 2018
(When I was a teenager, I did drugs to cope with mental illness and a bad situation at home. It resulted in me being addicted to intravenous medicines and drugs. Later, I ended up in rehab and got proper care. This happens a few weeks after I get released from rehab.)

Nurse: “We have to take a blood test so we know you don’t take drugs anymore.”

Me: “Don’t you usually do pee tests?”

Nurse: “We think a blood test will be more effective in your case.”

Me: “I would really prefer that you don’t force me to have my blood drawn.”

Nurse: “We really think it would be more effective in your case.”

Me: “You think forcing an ex-addict to be stabbed with needles is going to be effective to said ex-addict’s recovery?”

(I did the pee test.)
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Old 05-10-2022   #690
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Will Soon Eat His Words
Hospital, Jerk, New Mexico, Non-Dialogue, Patients, Stupid, USA | Healthy | July 1, 2018
One of our patients has a procedure in the morning for which he needs to not eat or drink anything for twelve hours prior. This isn’t uncommon before many procedures, and while it’s not pleasant, it’s doable for most people.

Not so with this patient. As soon as the twelve hours start, he rings his call light every fifteen minutes demanding we bring him something to eat. The first few times, his nurse goes in and explains to him why he can’t eat and what the dangers are, and tells him that if he really needs to eat, we can postpone or cancel the procedure — which is not an emergency, but not entirely unelective. He is adamant that he does not want to postpone or cancel, but he demands that we bring him something to eat.

Obviously, we can’t ignore call lights, and so I fall hours behind in my work going into his room every fifteen minutes to reiterate what he already knows: he can eat now and postpone the procedure, or not eat and have it in the morning. He refuses to accept this and insists we bring him something to eat and that we perform the procedure as scheduled.

Around 3:00 in the morning, the call lights finally stop, and we are all relieved, assuming that he has finally fallen asleep. However, while I am catching up on the work I am behind on, I turn the corner to find the stack of dinner trays waiting to be picked up by the cafeteria, and this patient eating off of a used dinner tray. Without saying anything to the patient, and with a certain amount of satisfaction, I call the nurse and tell her she should let the doctor know that his scheduled morning procedure will have to be cancelled.
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Old 05-10-2022   #691
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Making A Needling Point
Finland, Hospital, Ignoring & Inattentive, Nurses, Patients | Healthy | June 30, 2018
(When I was a teenager, I did drugs to cope with mental illness and a bad situation at home. It resulted in me being addicted to intravenous medicines and drugs. Later, I ended up in rehab and got proper care. This happens a few weeks after I get released from rehab.)

Nurse: “We have to take a blood test so we know you don’t take drugs anymore.”

Me: “Don’t you usually do pee tests?”

Nurse: “We think a blood test will be more effective in your case.”

Me: “I would really prefer that you don’t force me to have my blood drawn.”

Nurse: “We really think it would be more effective in your case.”

Me: “You think forcing an ex-addict to be stabbed with needles is going to be effective to said ex-addict’s recovery?”

(I did the pee test.)
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Old 05-10-2022   #692
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The CDC Will Shut This Place Down For The Worst Juvenile Hypochondria It’s Ever Seen
Brooklyn, Doctor/Physician, Funny Kids, Medical Office, New York, Patients, USA | Healthy | June 29, 2018
(Overheard between a pediatrician and a seven-year-old patient

Pediatrician: “Look, [Child], you learned more about [disease] on your own; that’s a good thing! It’s very smart to learn all about your health. And, you found out online that we always tell the CDC when someone has [disease]. I think it’s very good when people learn about how we keep track of disease. But from now on, calling the CDC is my job, not yours.”
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Old 05-10-2022   #693
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Wisdom Teeth Require The Wise To Remove Them
Alabama, Bad Behavior, Dentist, Non-Dialogue, USA | Healthy | June 28, 2018
I go to the dentist to get my wisdom teeth out. I have had two shots already and the laughing gas on, no big problem.

He starts trying to pull one tooth out that grew in crooked and I tell him that it is hurting. He gives me another shot, which should deaden it right then. He tells me not to be such a baby. Then, instead of being gentle and rocking it back and forth to loosen it before pulling it, he grabs a pair of pliers and snatches the tooth straight out of the gum!

He starts doing that with my other one on the same side. I bite the fire out of him. He has the nerve to tell my mom that I “need to be more prepared for a dental visit.” Not when one almost snatches your gums out of your mouth!

I go straight from that dentist to one that treated me when I was a child. He is super nice, and he helps straighten out what the other one did to me. He takes one look in my mouth and says, “When was the last time you went to a dentist?” I reply, “I just came from one.”
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Old 05-10-2022   #694
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You’re Boxing Me In Here
Australia, Hobart, Patients, Pharmacy, Stupid, Tasmania | Healthy | June 27, 2018
(At my pharmacy, we commonly take orders by phone so that a customer’s medications can be ready to collect when they arrive. This phone order, however, is a little different.)

Me: “Good afternoon. This is [Pharmacy]. [My Name] speaking. How can I help?”

Customer: “Yes, I’d like to order some medications, please.”

Me: “Sure. What do you need?”

Customer: “I can’t remember what they’re called, sorry.”

Me: “That’s okay. We can figure it out. Do you remember what they’re for?”

Customer: “No, sorry. But they come in a box…”
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Old 05-10-2022   #695
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Not The Kind Of “Fall Into My Arms” Story We’re Used To
Australia, Golden Years, Grocery Store, Health & Body, Kind Strangers, New South Wales | Healthy | June 26, 2018
(I’m standing behind a woman in line at the checkout who has put her groceries on the belt and has picked up her tiny baby out of the seat, as the baby started fussing. The customer in front of her is a sweet, older man who is having trouble getting his card to work. The woman is swaying side to side, something I don’t think much of because I did the same to calm down my kids when they were small. The older man turns to apologise for the wait, and gets a funny look on his face.)

Older Guy: “Are you okay, ma’am?”

(The woman spins around to face me and I see her face is slightly purple and her eyes are completely unfocused and darting around. Before I can react to try to catch her, she shoves the baby in my direction. I drop my items and catch the baby just in time, and the old man tries to catch the woman as she drops and starts twitching. They both end up on the floor, though he does break her fall. The cashier calls for help and there’s a flurry of activity, with managers calling for an ambulance and helping the woman. The old man scrambles back to his feet, and he and I step aside — me still holding the baby — while the ambulance officers show up and diagnose her with a seizure and start loading her into an ambulance. They take the baby with them — she has regained consciousness at this point and screams for her baby, thinking she had dropped them when she fell. In all the activity, the older man stays at the end of the checkout, waiting to finish paying for his groceries and leave. I look down and see he is holding his arm strangely.)

Me: “Sir, are you okay?”

Older Guy: “Ah, landed on my arm a bit funny.”

(Upon closer inspection, his arm is clearly broken quite badly near his wrist.)

Cashier: “Oh, no! Why didn’t you tell the ambulance guys? They would have taken you, too!”

Older Guy: “Oh, no, they were busy with the young lass. I’ve had my time; youngins are the future! I’ll get it looked at later.”

(We did eventually convince him to let me drive him to the hospital, with a promise of dropping his groceries off at home to his wife. She was beside herself and let me drive her back to her husband’s car so they wouldn’t have to worry about it later. Given the amount of stories on here about old people being cranky and mean, I was touched to find one who was willing to sit quietly through immense pain just so someone else would receive medical attention.)
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Old 05-10-2022   #696
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The Whole Nine Family
Family & Kids, Medical Office, Patients, USA | Healthy | June 25, 2018
(I’m 38 and pregnant for the first time. My OB has a bit of a specialty in older pregnancies, so I’m not surprised to see a woman looking older than me in the waiting room.)

Me: “This is my first. We weren’t really planning anything; you know, whatever happens, happens.”

Woman: “Pregnancy six, baby number nine. Christ, what I would give for a girl this time.”

Me: “Nine? All the rest are boys? Wow.”

Woman: “Yep. In my defense, pregnancies three and four were multiples, and pregnancy five was surprise; the vasectomy didn’t take.”

Me: *afraid to ask now* “And this one?”

Woman: “My husband and I put a hit out on the urologist. The boys are pretty evenly split between this kid being the messiah and their dad being Wolverine.”

Me: “Was it a shock for them?”

Woman: “When we Skyped our oldest, he laughed so hard he fell off the chair and concussed himself. We had to explain to his gunny why he was giggling while bleeding profusely from the head.” *she sighs* “I’m too old for this crap.”

(She was called back then. Lady, I wish you all the luck.)
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Old 05-10-2022   #697
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A Totally Crap Present
Canada, Medical Office, Non-Dialogue, Nurses, Patients, Revolting, Silly | Healthy | June 24, 2018
I have to give a stool sample. I don’t have to go while I’m at the clinic, so I go home and bring it back later. Literally the only opaque bag I can find in the house is a gift bag… so I put the container in that.

I feel bad, but watching the nurse’s expression turn from delight to horror as she realizes I have not brought her a present is… pretty funny.
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Old 05-10-2022   #698
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From No Breathing To Heavy Breathing
Australia, Hospital, Patients, Rude & Risque, Silly, Spouses & Partners | Healthy | June 23, 2018
(I’ve been having trouble getting solid sleep lately, and my partner informs me that I’ve suddenly stopped breathing in my sleep a few times. My doctor refers me to a local hospital for a sleep study. My partner comes with me, since he’ll be helping me set up the equipment for my at-home study. The technician walks us through the process, and packs everything up for us to take home.)

Tech: “Now make sure you start hooking this all up a half hour before midnight, okay? You don’t have to be asleep when it switches on, but you should be in bed and settling down for the night. It’s all automated and will beep when it comes on, and switches off again at nine-thirty. Any questions?”

Me: “No, I think I’m—”

Partner: “Yes! I have one.”

Tech: “Yep?”

Partner: “We can still have sex once she’s all hooked up, right? I’ve always had a thing for Borgs.”

(One look at his face, and the tech can tell he’s not serious. I’ve been pretty anxious about the not-breathing thing, and he’s been trying to make jokes all day to cheer me up.)

Tech: “Now, I know you’re joking, but please don’t actually do that. You can damage the leads or accidentally switch the recording device off. We’ve had it happen.”

Partner: *surprised* “You’re kidding!”

Tech: “No. We even had one man book an in-hospital test, and his wife showed up with him. She apparently thought it was like a hotel, and that he was just after a night away from the kids.”

Me: “Wow.”

Tech: “She wasn’t thrilled when we told her she had to leave.”

Partner: “Well, would you be? I mean, there goes your romantic evening in these luxurious surroundings…” *he waves around the very basic hospital room we’re sitting in*
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Old 05-10-2022   #699
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Use Your Emergency Words
Hospital, Patients, USA, Wordplay | Healthy | June 22, 2018
(I’m putting a splint on a patient who broke his thumb working on heavy machinery. I’m trying to keep him talking to help with the pain.)

Me: “So, how did you get into this kind of work?”

Patient: “F*** if I know… Oh, sorry!”

Me: “I don’t mind; this is a f****** ER.”

Patient: *laughs*
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Old 05-10-2022   #700
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This Rule Is A Lie (Down)
California, Hospital, Los Angeles, Security, Stupid, USA | Healthy | June 22, 2018
(I’ve ended up in the ER waiting room with an excruciating spinal headache, due to a myelogram test I underwent four days earlier. This means I can’t have any part of my spine bent for more than a minute or so without the headache coming on and making me severely sick. I’ve been becoming severely sick the entire four days anytime I’ve so much as gone to the toilet, so I’ve been forced to be bedridden the entire time. The waiting room has nowhere to lie down, not even two chairs near each other without a non-removable armrest between them. I also know that if I stand in place straight up for more than a few minutes my blood pressure will drop and I’ll lose consciousness. For lack of any other solution, I’ve crawled to lie down on the floor in a semi-clean corner, with my head under one of the unused seats, to hide from the bright ceiling lights and be as much out of the way as possible. I’ve been waiting this way for over an hour. I carefully get up to ask the check-in nurse how much longer it’ll be. She can’t tell me; she can only say that I’ll have to wait some more. I go back to my place on the floor. In less than a minute, a security guard comes up.)

Guard: “Miss, you can’t lie on the floor here.”

Me: “What? I need to be lying down. If I don’t, I’ll become badly sick.”

Guard: “Well, but surely you can sit down, miss; there are seats here. You just can’t be lying down.”

Me: *bewildered at having to explain such obvious things in an ER waiting room, and after already having lain there for an hour without being bothered or bothering anyone* “I’m sorry, but I can’t sit anywhere. The reason I’ve come to the ER is that I have a specific condition where I become severely sick when I’m sitting. There’s no way I can physically be in that position right now. I have to be lying down so I don’t become ill.”

Guard: “Oh, well… But miss, there’s a rule that says you aren’t allowed to lie on the floor in this room. So couldn’t you please just go over right there and sit in one of these nice empty seats, anyway? There’s a rule, you see.” *looks at me expectantly like he’s making a perfectly reasonable suggestion.*

Me: “…”

(I checked later: there were no signs anywhere in the room stating such a rule.)
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