The assholes, on the other hand, make my time in the trauma bay much more entertaining. I can't say I prefer them per se, but this blog would frankly be impossible without them.
And thus enters Jack (not his real name™).
When Jack was first wheeled into my trauma bay, he immediately rubbed me the wrong way. It wasn't so much that he was acting obnoxiously, because he wasn't (at least not at first). Actually when he first got there, he was happy and giddy. I could almost describe him as spunky. He was smiling sharply, almost demoniacally so. He seemed to be muttering rhythmically under his breath. It took me a few seconds to realise he was singing.
"Hey everybody, this here is Jack," the medic started as he helped Jack off the gurney. "He crashed his car into a tree for some reason, don't know why. He refused to get out when the police got there, so they kinda roughed him up a bit. I think they whacked him on the left leg a few times, but I didn't take his pants off to look at their handiwork."
"They choked me too," Jack tossed off as the police officer shook his head No, we didn't.
He had definitely been beaten about his head, but he had no other obvious injuries.
Unbeknownst to me, Jack was well known by the emergency staff as a bit of a wanker, a jerk. Ok, that's putting it mildly - he was an asshole. He was also a frequent flyer - he seemed to come to our hospital on a regular basis whenever he took PCP, which was often. I examined him from head to toe, and other than having been spanked around a bit, by some stroke of luck Jack didn't look too worse for the wear. He tugged on my lab coat as I tried to walk away.
"Doc, they beat me. They beat me good."
I had to hand it to him, he was definitely persistent. But something about Jack's behaviour was rubbing me the wrong way. I just couldn't quite put my finger on it.
About a half hour later Jack's X-rays were all done, and they were (shockingly) all normal. I walked back in to give Jack the good news, but what greeted me was not was I expected.
Jack's hand was at his groin under the sheet, moving rather quickly. Wait, is he . . . It took me about 0.298 seconds (I didn't count) to realise what he was doing. Oh fucking hell, he is! There was no mistaking it and I wasn't imagining it - this was actually happening. Now at this point I had three options:
- Turn right back around, walk out, and pretend I didn't see anything.
- Stand and stare, completely bewildered.
- Ask him politely to stop.