zen.org Communal Weblog

April 18, 2011

Living on the Edge (Free game piece inside each box)

Filed under: — brendan @ 19:38 IST

Today was like a surreal, hallucinated copy of yesterday.  Aside from doctors doing their rounds in the morning, which carries with itself a bit of chaos (a la an episode of Entourage with the teams traveling along beside them), it’s been a pretty slow day for a hospital weekday.  Enough to make you have to convince yourself it’s actually Monday.

Soon tonight comes my first daily growth stimulating hormone injection.  There’s a little box with a single-injection syringe of Neupogen.  I’ve been told recently I could learn to do these myself if I so choose.  I’m still not sure about this.

Living on the EDGE

I underwent a new, cruel, unjust treatment here this weekend.  Nothing too serious, but boy did it leave its mark on me.  Only a few minutes before 5pm on Friday, the wireless Internet connection for the guests—their word, not ours—on the ward stopped working.  (I know the hospital’s actual Internet connection worked fine; I’ll spare you the technical part.)

My mind struggled but finally accepted the scenario of this being an accident, and not an act of revenge by a pissed-off employee who yanked a cable just before running out the door to catch the DART (Dublin’s commuter rail system).

So all weekend, I was online through my mobile phone.  And not at the “nice”, 3G, decent, usable speed of my mobile phone provider.  Instead, it was the EDGE.  Not the stellar guitarist from U2, no, nothing nearly as classy and practiced as that.  This was the “2G” mobile phone wireless Internet access which started showing up around 2003–2004.  We’re so spoiled, most of us have forgotten how incredibly cool it was to get to be online on our phones.

This blemished cousin of 3G and—gasp—upcoming 4G, EDGE is actually pretty decent.  Or so I’ve learned over the course of this weekend.  I even (thanks to the wonders of Android) made my mobile phone create a wireless network of its own so my laptop could do everything through it.  This is how I was able to actually do my email and make blog posts for the last three days.

So today the wonderful hospital employee M came by after I’d asked the great nurses making my bed in the morning to mention we’d been suffering over the weekend.  She said the IT staff claimed the guest logins worked fine.  I was able to give her a happy list of technical retort to this, saying sure, you may be able to put the username and password in which allows you to be on the wireless itself, but once there, the gates are slammed shut to actually get out to the Internet.  She left, then returned a very short time later saying somehow the IT folks had started hearing from others, and accepted maybe something wasn’t working.

Don’t get me wrong; I’ve got tons of close friends who do IT/tech support, and are absolutely excellent at it.  I routinely do it myself just for the sheer fun of it.  But sometimes, in some rare places, users still have to fight to assert their right to know what they’re talking about.

My Internet-access glands are still a bit achy, but I know their extended exposure to EDGE won’t have any long-lasting effects.  I made sure of it on Wikipedia.

Irish Hospital Patient Bingo!

Because of a morning tweet from a friend, I got the inspiration to create this: the Irish Hospital Patient’s Discharge Bingo card.  You draw a big ‘X’—or leave a drop of blood?—on each box where a nurse or a doctor have said the key word or phrase.  When you’ve got five matches in a row, you’ve won the game.

Irish Hospital Patient Discharge PDF

There clearly are many different ways to make the time go by when you’re in the hospital. 🙂

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