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Posts Tagged ‘healthcare’

Posted by Dirck on 17 September, 2020

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 14 September
  • 15 September
  • 16 September
  • 17 September
  • First draft of “Hobb’s Landing”.
  • 739 words typed.

The progress is still painfully slow, but I am nearing the end… of the first draft. I’ve just realized I need to get some themes better inflated now that I’m approaching the endpoint, so the second draft isn’t going to be quick and easy, either. Probably. I’m bracing for it.

And while I complain about the speed of production, the fact that this first draft is going straight into a machine provides me with a small comfort– it’s now twenty pages long, which by my standards is a fairly lengthy number.

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Again, Farewell

Posted by Dirck on 10 September, 2020

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 7 September
  • 8 September
  • 9 September
  • 10 September
  • Submissions
  • Mild public lamentations (below)
  • Extra work for several editors.
  • Probably not as much as appropriate.

The Long Weekend was indeed very long for us. We got to watch a well-loved family member slowly expire. In the current climate of pandemic, our loss is bearable and small, but we feel it.

Hercule Grey, 2004 – 2020. The late Doctor Awkward Puss.

He was in his seventeenth year, so his passing was not entirely shocking. It was, in a way, a good death, because it was timely. We’ve lost too many to sudden tumors that manifested when they were relatively young. Old Doc just sort of stopped, like a clock that wound down, at an age where such a thing might be expected.

There was a small element of relief in it, too. For the past couple of years, he’d been a scrawny old man– my wife described him as “a furry bag of feathers”, and while he got plenty of rewarding cuddles from the newer members of the flock, he (and we adult humans) were perpetually concerned that the boisterous play of the young ones might do him an injury.

We have some pictures of him taken in what turned out to be the last two weeks of his life, which I will not be sharing. I have never forgiven the tabloid industry as a whole for the cadaverous LAST PICTURES OF DAVID NIVEN! which hung off the ends of grocery story tills, and I’m not going to share similarly gaunt images of one who should be remembered by the world at large in a different light. I will remember him in his appropriately sleek form, before his powers waned.

One of the last good pictures of Hercule, in which he is supported by Bram and Kees. Bram may be even more affected by his death than my wife.

A couple of post-scripts:

  • the name:
    • Hercule not after Poirot, but after Cyrano de Bergerac. As a kitten, he had a rather pronounced beak
    • Grey slightly after the fiendish probe-jabbers from Zeta Reticulum with their similarly-shaped eyes, but more so because my wife found his nature and presentation put her in mind of Joel Grey.
  • I am of course aware that this post (planned for this slot since Sunday) is going up on the same day as the announcement of the death of Diana Rigg. I could wish it were otherwise, but I’m sticking to the plan because I need to release the pressure. I will remember her mainly from her time in The Avengers, not because I insist a woman must be young and beautiful to be worth imagining, but because I watched The Avengers a whole lot during the first decade of my life. Emma Peel, competent and formidable, is firmly encoded in my core recollections.

 

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Posted by Dirck on 3 September, 2020

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 31 August
  • 1 September
  • 2 September
  • 3 September
  • First draft of “Hobb’s Landing”.
  • 827 words typed.

I should probably also mention that there was no writing at all yesterday, as my wife was in the hospital to have a hernia de-herniated. She is fine, and as I like to point out when this sort of thing happens, the entire cost of the day was the gas burnt in a total of less than twenty minutes driving.

Well, OK, there was the pain-killer prescription, but between work insurance and the province’s Hey You Don’t Make So Much Let’s Help You Out drug benefit, a week’s worth of Tylenol 3 cost $7.96.

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Posted by Dirck on 6 June, 2019

 

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 3 June
  • 4 June
  • 5 June
  • 6 June
  • First draft of “Found on Roadside, Dead.”
  • Second draft of “Fourteen Nights of Day” (a working title).
  • Third draft of “Tiger on My Back”.
  • 6 manuscript pages.
  • -812 typed words.
  • Complete and submitted instantly.

There is a negative number in the progress this week. I wrapped up the story, and found it was over the word limit given out by the target anthology’s call for submissions. So, last week’s remarkable output proves to have been a bit of a foot-shoot.

I am, alas, not surprised by this development. But it’s done now, two words under the limit, and ready for examination by my patient readers.

Those who actually follow these updates will be shocked at how long I left “Tiger on My Back” sitting in a commented-upon-yet-unedited state. Well, I started some other stuff, then found the call “Fourteen Nights” responds to… and having thumbed through it when the last reader finished I figured the gratifyingly few issues they found were low priority. Until I found another call for submissions yesterday, seeking WW2-related stories. I’m susceptible to magical thinking, and submitting today of all days with that as the criteria was irresistible.

And for those who are feeling clever– yes, indeed, it is that kind of Tiger.

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Posted by Dirck on 30 May, 2019

 

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 27 May
  • 28 May
  • 29 May
  • 30 May
  • First draft of “Found on Roadside, Dead.”
  • Second draft of “Fourteen Nights of Day” (a working title).
  • 6 manuscript pages.
  • 4247 typed words.

I don’t know about you folks, but I’m stunned at this week’s output. When did I learn to type that fast while making use of my creative faculties?

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Posted by Dirck on 23 May, 2019

 

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 20 May
  • 21 May
  • 22 May
  • 23 May
  • First draft of “Found on Roadside, Dead.”
  • Second draft of “Fourteen Nights of Day” (a working title).
  • Staring bleakly at a balance sheet
  • 7 manuscript pages.
  • 2413 typed words
  • Several tugs at the collar.

Good heavens! I managed to get some writing done on a long weekend! This gets balanced out by having to take today off to visit my bank, because like everyone else making less than a quarter-million a year, I’m getting killed by the difference between cost of living increases and raises of salary, so things need to be done. On an utterly unrelated point, have I mentioned that I accept donations?

Despite the current financial worries, I appear to be able to afford a robot to hit the “publish” button for this thing. I’m not even looking at it! Oh, what a dizzying age we live in!

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Includes Small Healthcare Excursion

Posted by Dirck on 16 May, 2019

 

Day What How Much Pen Ink
  • 13 May
  • 14 May
  • 15 May
  • 16 May
  • First draft of “Fourteen Nights of Day” (a working title).
  • 13 manuscript pages.

That’s not much for the week, especially considering I imported some work from Sunday into this week’s total. So, what’s up?

Gall stones!

Not my own, for which I am grateful, but my wife. I’m hoping this is a purely matrilineal thing (her mother and sister have had similar problems) and that our son remains untouched by it, because she was not having fun when I came home from work on Monday. So little, in fact, that Tuesday morning saw me installing her at the ER, and I was 100% of the household childcare staff for Tuesday and Wednesday. She’s home now, having been shaken free of the blockage of the moment by the modern miracle of ultrasonics, although we’re told the offending organ will have to be removed… probably in the next couple of weeks.

Anyway, without preparation (and the whole time was very much a lack of information exercise; the ER is a bit of a black box) I was unable to get any writing done. Thus, little accomplished. The draft is complete, which is good, since the anthology I aim to submit it to closes in July… unless they fill all their slots before then.

As a data point to my American readers, let me tell you what this week’s entertainment costs were. The entertainment consisted of:

  • Admission to the ER;
  • 36 hours of IV fluids, because surgery might have happened at any time;
  • as much morphine as someone without previous tolerance to stand (apparently gall stones really hurt);
  • ultrasound imagining to get a firm idea of what the problem really was;
  • the ultrasonic treatment;
  • three consultations with doctors;
  • loads of interactions with nurses;
  • the use of hospital linens.

The total cost of this was One Canadian Dollar, paid to park in the lot not devoted to ER patients when I was picking her up. I could, conceivably, not have paid that, but I didn’t want to plug up a parking space close to the door which someone with a box full of severed fingers might need. I’m considerate that way. You might also say “Oh, but you pay so much tax there,” to which I reply– I got a refund on my income tax because our household doesn’t bring in a lot. And were we entirely without income and thus paying no tax, we’d still have got that very same level of treatment. I’d just have trouble coming up with the dollar. This is why the resistance of the US to socialized medicine is such a point of amazement to so many outside that country.

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