Sunday, February 15, 2009

Rock, Paper, Scissors

Last night I played the highest stakes game of rock, paper, scissors of my life. One of our residents needed a new bag for his colostomy. I rummaged through boxes in his room looking for one, but the only stocked bags had open bottoms and required a clamp. I ran all over the building looking for a clamp but returned empty-handed.

I asked my charge nurse what I should do. He looked me very solemnly and said, "You'll have to empty it, wash it out and re-use it." My eyes narrowed with incredulity, and we stared at each other for about ten seconds. The nurse could see my hesitation, and, with a little cockiness in his voice, announced, "I'll rock, paper, scissors you for it."

I laughed. Louder than I should've had at 2:30 in the morning in a nursing home. "Okay," I replied. "Let's go."

We faced each other in the hallway, and I assumed my best rock, paper, scissors stance.

1,2,3! My scissors beat his paper. 1,2,3! Both scissors. 1,2,3! His paper beats my rock. 1,2,3! Both rock. 1,2,3! I drop scissors, he drops rock.

It was a defeat which had a very particular smell to it.


  1. You might possibly be the toughest guy I know. Baby diapers will be absolutely nothing for you. Seems like that could be a good medical school interview story...Do you think your charge nurse cheated?

  2. hey, your blog is brilliant. i'm waiting for another installation. and how come knows where to find you?