December, 2005 Archive

December 2, 2005, 1:37 pm

Smells Like Team Spirit

The 1963 Corvette Stingray!

I guess getting ogled by a bunch of student nurses was a selling point back then. Hard to tell if they are checking out the car or the grey-haired stud driving it.

They certainly could not afford this car on a ’63 nurse’s salary. Apparently they couldn’t afford any car because they are standing at the bus stop.

Don’t they look a little old for student nurses, circa 1963?

In ’63 a nurse might want to catch a guy who drove a car like that. In ’05, a nurse can buy the car for herself and not worry about a guy who drives a car like that. Then again….

The nurse might be the guy who drives a car like that!

Oh the times, they’ve been a-changin’…..


ER staff is often referred to as a “team”. I say you can tell a person’s best sport by how they conduct their nursing practice at work. Here’s a description of the various “teams” and how they play.

  • Cross-country
    • Each person “runs” toward the “finish line”, or the end of the shift. The members of the team work independently. You rarely find them sitting and if you do, they are charting. Interaction between team members is minimal, often consisting of helping with a task or a quick high-five as they run. The ER doc (coach) gives mini-goals (new orders) along the route. This team is made up of self-starters. To them ER is an endurance sport.
  • Football
    • All the team members tackle every task. The charge nurse (center) hikes the ball to the quarterback (ER doc) who passes the orders to the receivers (staff nurses) who then try to run it through the opposition (slow labs, lost specimens, broken equipment, infiltrated IVs, etc) and make a touchdown (patient discharge). Because the entire offense is on the field at once, it is often difficult to follow who has the ball or the ultimate responsibility for any fumbles. The quarterback is often sacked by the sheer number of plays they must call in one shift.
  • Baseball
    • The team sits in the dugout(nursing station), where they sit until a ball is hit in their direction (a patient in their assigned room), at which point they leave the dugout and enter the field. Once they have run the bases (discharged their patient), they return to the dugout. Every now and then the ER doc (manager) enters the dugout to provide motivation or chew out the team, prn. The triage nurse is the pitcher and the charge nurse is at bat. Spitting is discouraged, as is crotch-adjusting in patient care areas.
  • Bowling
    • The team members sit around the scoring table (nurses station) drinking coffee and socializing. Some read the daily newspaper or keep abreast of what inquiring minds want to know while they wait for the ER doctor to set up the pins (write an order). At this point, one team member will rise from a chair, grab the ball (pick up the chart) and approach the line (read the order), and send the ball down the lane (carry out the order). If faced with a difficult split, they will ask a colleague to send the ball down the second time while they return to the chair area. Bowlers rarely break a sweat. The triage nurse provides a constant supply of pins for the ER doctor to set up. The charge nurse keeps score and wonders why she didn’t join cross country.
  • Tennis
    • This sport is played in small ERs at night when there are only two nurses on duty. They hit the ball back and forth (split the patients) so that they have uninterrupted time to complete their crochet, letter-writing, book,d DVD or memory book construction. The ER doc (coach) makes an occasional appearance on the court, only to be shooed back to his office by the players. ER docs love this team.

I’ve also seen ERs that play “dodgeball” or “dogpile” and a few that made the WWF look like a Pillsbury bake-off.

Sometimes the ER docs accuse me of playing “Keep Away” with the charts. Okay, so I tend to hoard my booty in the corner. (That’s “booty” as in “treasure”, not “boo-tay” as in derriere).

I suppose there are as many styles of nursing as there are nurses.

As for me, give me a shift staffed with cross country types any day.

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11:33 am

It’s A Bird! It’s A Plane! It’s….

I have now seen everything.

This is EneMan and he is the mascot for Fleet enemas.

I stumbled across him while surfing over at Respectful Insolence, where Orac has put up the calendar pictures from 2005.

Yes, EneMan has his own calendar. Last year he traveled the world, this year he travels through time.

Given the propensity for enema orders in my ER, I find this extremely funny.

I haven’t stopped giggling for half an hour.

Someone actually dresses up and walks around as “Eneman”. And you thought you had job issues.

I wonder if someone has to dress up as a rectum…


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About Me

My name is Kim, and I'm a nurse in the San Francisco Bay area. I've been a nurse for 33 years; I graduated in 1978 with my ADN. My experience is predominately Emergency and Critical Care, and I have also worked in Psychiatry and Pediatrics. I made the decision to be a nurse back in 1966 at the age of nine...

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