a needle and a mile of 2-0 nylon

Nurses who refuse to get vaccinated, firefighters and police officers who refuse to get vaxxed, airline pilots rejecting the vax–I’m so fucking sick of these privileged assholes. If it were anything other than a political posturing, I might be more tolerant. But I’m convinced that 99% of it grows out of pig-headed Trumpist pouting and free-floating, unfocused rage.

A million years ago, I was a medic. (Yes, this is related…sorta kinda after a fashion; I’ll get there eventually.) After a year or so of doing basic medic stuff, I was assigned to a newly-developed team in a major medical center. It was called the Special Functions unit. One of our secondary duties was to respond to any medical crisis that might involve respiratory impairment–you know, difficulty with breathing. Here’s a true thing: almost every medical crisis involves some difficulty with breathing.

Although it wasn’t our original purpose, we became a support squad for emergencies. If there was a cardiac arrest, we responded with the cardiac arrest team; if there was a fire, we responded with the base fire department; if there was a suicide attempt or an accident involving a military vehicle or a premature birth or a crisis that required an ambulance, we often rode along; if there was a mass casualty/injury event, we were called to the emergency room. Technically, our role was to insure the patient/victim kept breathing while others worked on the injuries/wounds–but, of course, we were also expected to lend a hand with whatever needed to be done.

I mention all this because of one particular incident. A drunken brawl at one of the barracks. Because it was a mass injury event, I was called to the ER. Nobody was having trouble breathing, but since I was there, I was expected to help out with the brawlers–most of whom were still drunk and still belligerent. One guy had a cut on his forehead. It was a simple straight-line cut, maybe an inch and a half long, shallow, but bloody. All I had to do was debride it and suture it shut. Simple, if the guy was sober.

I should point out, this was a military medical center. In a civilian hospital, I wouldn’t have been allowed to suture wounds–not because I didn’t know how to do it, but because of liability issues. In the military, you’re allowed–even required–to do stuff that would make a civilian hospital administrator curl up in horror.

So I had to suture the cut on this guy’s forehead. But he refused to lie still. He was still drunk, still angry, still wanting to find the guy who’d hit him in the head. You can’t suture anybody who’s unwilling to lie still for more than about thirty seconds; hell, you can’t even maintain a sterile field. I mentioned this to a passing ER doctor, who looked down at the guy on the gurney and said, “If you don’t lie still, he (he nodded at me) is going to suture your ear to the pillow.” Then the doctor walked off.

Reader, I sutured that poor motherfucker’s ear to the pillow. Just one loose stitch, through his earlobe and into the pillow case. It wouldn’t have actually held him down, of course, but it was enough to shock him and keep him immobile–and I mean fucking frozen in place–until I sutured his head wound.

This was almost certainly criminal, even in the military. But it allowed me to treat his wound, it gave him a moment to abandon any desire to continue the fight, it may have kept him from a court martial, and it helped restore some order to a chaotic Emergency Room, which benefited everybody.

My point? All of these fuckwits who are refusing to get vaxxed against Covid for bullshit reasons? I want to suture their ears to pillows until they come to their senses and get the jab. I know it’s wrong. I know it’s a violation of their rights, including the right to bodily integrity. But give me a needle and a few miles of 2-0 nylon and I’d get this nation vaxxed.

It’s seriously time to stop appeasing and appealing to the people who are politically opposed to keeping the US alive and healthy.

7 thoughts on “a needle and a mile of 2-0 nylon

  1. I am so grateful for your posts, especially this one. As a Canadian, our news stories about America rarely reflect such wit, righteous anger and common sense. My American friends are lovely, smart people, but often seem in kind of a bubble out of self-preservation. Your posts seem honest and deeply felt. (I especially appreciate anything to do with stitching :-)

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you. I think a lot of people–not just progressives, not just Americans–are trying to juggle their need for self-preservation (including their emotional self-preservation) and the need for social activism. Things will never get better, and in fact will continue to get worse, if we focus too much on protecting ourselves.

      I started writing this blog probably a decade ago mainly just as a way to amuse myself. It wasn’t meant to focus on politics. I was really hoping that after Uncle Joe Biden was elected, I could spend more time writing about all the other stuff that interests me. But clearly, the social problems caused largely by irrational white anxiety are deeper than I wanted to believe.

      So this blog will continue to be one (of several) outlet for both my emotional self-preservation and activism. Thanks for reading.

      Like

  2. This is both funny and deeply angering. Because of course, we are in the same boat. In fact I have a feeling we are worse off. We are still only around 64% fully vaccinated as a country. Which is appalling. They didn’t vaccinate the kids during summer holidays so they are dropping like flies and now we have gangs of anti-vaxxers hanging around school gates trying to frighten the kids from getting the vaccine when their chance comes. Plus we are only allowing them 1 dose.

    As for medics not having it. I would simply fire them. Immediately. No excuse. I don’t give a shit about their rights. The rights of their patients have to come first.

    Liked by 1 person

    • This morning I read a news account of a Texas woman whose 10-year-old was infected with Covid-19. Texas, as you may know, has been actively resisting both vaccine and mask mandates. This boy, Zyrin Foots, developed a pair of rare conditions related to Covid in children–respiratory syncytial virus and multisystem inflammatory syndrome. As a result, his heart couldn’t pump blood efficiently enough throughout his body, which caused gangrene in the boy’s legs. His mother had to choose between amputating his legs or letting the boy die. Amputation would only give him an estimated 25% chance of survival. They did, apparently, amputate one leg, but it didn’t help. His mother had him removed from life support and he died.

      This sort of shit wouldn’t happen if politicians didn’t make the vax and masks a partisan issue. So yeah, if a nurse or a police officer or a teacher or a firefighter refuses to get vaxxed, fuck them in the neck.

      Like

      • My goodness! That poor kid. 10 years. To die like that. That multisystem inflammatory syndrome it terrible on it’s own for kids, let alone having another issue with it. He didn’t stand a chance.

        Over 100 children have died of Covid here. There are thousands with Long Covid over 12 months duration. It’s criminal not to vaccinate and protect children.

        Now we are seeing a loss of workforce because the kids are catching it at school and taking it home to parents who are largely the biggest sector of the workforce. But still the government will not move to Plan B, which would reintroduce compulsory masks. We can’t have it any other way other than compulsory because we’ve proved since July 19th that we as a country don’t have common sense or even a sense of preservation. We are selfish, angry and nasty to those trying to protect themselves. It’s all so messed up.

        I want mandatory masks in all public spaces. Back to 2m distance and no large indoor gatherings. For smaller indoor gatherings like pubs, restaurants and small venues I want entrance only with a valid vaccination passport. Anything less is not going to work. Other European countries do all of those things and are largely open and going about life with low and falling infection rates. But we still have lunatics gathering to protest that masks don’t work or harbour germs or some such crap. I’ve had enough of people.

        Liked by 1 person

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