Read Part 2
My condition became obvious. I conceded to myself that I had no choice but to surrender my life to snooty half-witted dickslaps and their lickspittles. When I informed the charge nurse of the recent development and asked her to phone an ambulance, she seemed delighted. She spent the next half-minute gloating that she’d been correct in her scripted assumption, then scolded that she’d have to finish “passing out meds” before she could tend to me. Only my acute distress kept an angry reaction in check.
The dolt who helmed the ambulance didn’t see fit to flip on the siren. He asked his female partner:
“What’s his problem, again?”
He sighed. “I’ve dealt with people like him before—probably just has gas. I guess we’re not in a hurry.”
Bumps and potholes that a speeding ambulance wouldn’t register magnified my violent pain. Whenever one of the road-blemishes upset the casually lumbering vehicle, the woman announced apologies like a conductor calls out a train’s stops. We arrived at the emergency room; while her partner handed paperwork to a secretary behind a counter, she immediately pressed a sticker the size and shape of a quarter, clearly designed for a child, onto my chest. She chirped that I had acted like a “brave patient” and made her proud. Again, my debilitating pain pre-empted any sarcasm or cussing on my part.
I laid on a gurney in the ER for close to an hour. Every fifteen minutes or so, extreme pain prompted me to ask a passing orderly of my status. They invariably didn’t so much as acknowledge my existence, stared straight ahead and kept scampering. A fat lady behind the curtain to my side—I’d caught a glimpse of her when the ambulance attendants maneuvered my stretcher into the ER—ceaselessly badgered them. She repeatedly accused them of not properly attending to her; she called them names, questioned their skills and threatened to sue the hospital. They responded politely to her chronic outbursts every time (though I could hear the irritation in their voices). Each of her tirades revealed a clue as to the reason she’d chosen to visit the ER: The pork beast had tripped and sprained her ankle. I’m not some walk-it-off Spartan, but rushing to the emergency room because of a sprained ankle? Boo-fucking-hoo.
In all that time, no doctor bothered to examine me. Finally some faceless drone wheeled me out of the ER and upstairs to a room, where an astonishingly irresponsible strategy unfolded.