Friday, July 07, 2006

moving up in the world

The perks of being a full-time ER monkey are pretty sweet. To wit, today I picked up (and took home and washed, because I'm like that) my three new sets of scrubs. Paid for by the hospital.

That's right, kids! Not only do I never have to wear a tie, not only do I get to wear what are basically pajamas with handy cargo pockets, but I don't even have to buy them myself.

I mean... well yeah, I have to pay to park, when I work afternoon/evenings. And yeah, I get no discount whatsoever at the cafeteria, much less get my ID badge charged up with fun bucks like the residents do. No, I can't just waltz away with suture materials to practice with, and speaking of the ID badge, I have to use it to leave some areas, and to get into others. But here's how much fun I'm having, knowing I'm committed to being in this environment: the scrubs thing feels as though it makes the rest worth it.

I'm not unrealistic. Any job, no matter how cool, will sometimes feel like a job. If you're lucky, it feels like good work. If it doesn't feel like work at all, then either it's not that hard a job, or maybe you're just not doing it right. In my experience, if it doesn't feel like work, it doesn't feel like fun, either. Anyway. I have had a sufficient number of shifts back in the ER since my glorious return that I have been reminded of how it's work for the full eight hours. But also of how much I love it.

I get paid a pretty sad pittance, really, but I get to see and to be a part of some very cool moments. I've done the thing where I count to three and then a bunch of people move a person. I'm nerd enough to still think that's cool. I get to witness how awesome some parents are with some kids, and see the good in people when they help one another.

And I get to reinforce the idea that the people who do the EM-doctor job are people just like me. By personality, if not by education and training, I could have been either one of the people in this little exchange:

ER Doc: This guy seems like he should be okay to go to detox, right?
ER Tech: Ehh... [indicates a specimen cup full of urine with a scary red tinge]
ER Doc: D'oh!
ER Tech: Yeah.

2 comments:

Amber said...

Wait...do you get the cool blue or green scrubs, though? I mean...you don't have to wear the scrubs with flowers or balloons on them, do ya?

I wouldn't mind wearing scrubs every day. There was a pretty hot scene on Grey's Anatomy that demonstrated how quickly scrubs can come off when you're in a supply closet with the team member and you're engaging in illicit relations. I thought that was pretty cool. For that to happen to me, I'd have to turn off and then unholster my radio, then take off my handcuffs, remove my master key, then slip off my belt, and only THEN could I get to the bizness of illicit relations with a coworker/team member.

But yeah. Free scrubs. Pretty cool.

Febrifuge said...

No flowers or balloons, no. There are several reasons I chose not to pursue nursing, and that's one of them. A smaller one, to be sure, but it counts.

Actually, the semiotics of scrub colors could be a whole post. Stay tuned.

Aww, man. I admit to watching Grey's Anatomy as a soapy diversion, but anything on that show that has anything to do with medicine or hospitals can be assumed to be wrong. There can basically be no illicit relations.

There are cameras everywhere, and while it's true the supply closets are free of that particular obstacle, there's the fact that at any time of the day or night, someone like me might bust in at any moment to pick up a handful of 18g IV's, blood culture tubes, and suction tubing. And leave behind a hearty and sarcastic laugh.

There is merciless mocking of anything newsworthy and embarrassing. The folks who skinny-dipped at the annual party three years ago still are gossiped about fondly.

So, no. Not even if my totally awesome girlfriend were to come visit the workplace.

Who said what about handcuffs, now?