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Given there are only 11 shopping days left until Christmas – if you have a loved one or a friend in the medical field I found a great place for purchasing nursing scrubs.  As many of you know – my wife is a nurse.  She works in a hospital on a Med/Surge, Telemetry floor.  The hospital she works for doesn’t have a standard uniform and therefore she and her co-workers are free to purchase whatever scrubs they wish.  My wife has a closet full of different scrubs, including holiday related scrub tops.

Likewise, as many of you know – I too am in the healthcare field.  My organization owns 34 primary care clinics.  We don’t have standard uniforms either and our physicians, nurses, MA’s, CNA’s, are all free to wear whatever scrubs they want as long as they are tasteful.  Anyway – back to the original point here – if you’re looking for a place to get quality scrubs for cheap – check out Blue Sky Scrubs.

Blue Sky Scrubs has men’s and women’s scrubs, and if you’re interested in it, even children’s scrubs.  They are very reasonably priced and depending on what shipping option you take – you can have them within 1 to 6 business days – definitely in time for Christmas. You get free shipping for any orders over $155.

Multiple Sclerosis – do you know anybody that has it?  Do you even know what it is? Do you even know how people get MS?  I bring this up because a woman I know recently was diagnosed with MS.  Funny thing is, (well, not so funny) – I thought MS was something you were born with.  Apparently, she developed MS shortly after having her first child.  It looks like this will also be her last child as a result. Apparently, MS is hereditary and isn’t usually diagnosed until early adulthood – which explains why she was diagnosed at her age.

MS is one of those demyelinating (muscle loss) diseases that affects the brain and spinal cord – essentially – it attacks the central nervous system.  In wanting to learn more about MS as a result of what my co-worker is going through – I came across a website that provides a lot of good information.  The name is allaboutms.com.  There is a page about MS treatment as well as what the appropriate Multiple Sclerosis Diet should be. While there is still no cure  yet, there are treatments to alleviate the symptoms and a certain diet can also help with some of those symptoms as well.

Now that I have found this website – I will be sure to pass this on to my co-worker.  If you know someone who has MS – please pass this on to them.  There is a lot of great information on this website.

Now back to our regularly scheduled program.

Hi All – yes, another one of my public service announcements.  This is for all of you who rejected the H1N1 “Swine Flu” vaccine last year.  They haven’t made it widely, or publicly known, but – the H1N1 vaccine is now included in this year’s seasonal influenza vaccine.

From the CDC:

Everyone 6 months and older should get a flu vaccine as soon as vaccine is available this fall. While flu is unpredictable, it’s likely that 2009 H1N1 viruses and regular seasonal viruses will cause illness in the U.S. this flu season. The 2010-2011 flu vaccine will protect against three different flu viruses: an H3N2 virus, an influenza B virus and the H1N1 virus that caused so much illness last season.

Given this is flu season and everyone is pushing the seasonal flu vaccine right now – I just thought you should know!

It’s been a long – hard day today.  I put my dog, Jake, down today.  We had him for 11 years.  He was a great dog.  Unfortunately – he lost his mind.  We tried crating him – but that didn’t work – he just went crazy in there since he had never been crated.  We tried xanax for a while – that just zoned him out and he couldn’t control his bowels.  After talking with the vet – the last resort was to put him on a crazy heavy sedative.  We couldn’t do that to him.  What would be the point of keeping him sedated every day?  What kind of quality of life is that?  The wife and I were having a hard time making a decision.  Yesterday we finally made that decision after coming home.  We didn’t crate him yesterday because we were only going to be gone for a couple hours.  It stormed like crazy while we were gone.  We got home and he had destroyed the house.  Somehow he broke down our bedroom door then got through our closet door and chewed up a lot of the wife’s shoes and got in to some of our papers and destroyed those.  Somehow he got through the gate and got upstairs and chewed up a lot of the kids’ toys in the playroom and left a “present” in the middle of their room.  He tore down the drapes in the living room and left a “present” there too.  We had him on 3mg of xanax and he still managed to do this.  The storm drove him literally out of his mind.

We called the vet yesterday and I brought him in this morning.  The kids and the wife gave him hugs and said good-bye before I took him in.  The closer I got to the vet, the faster and harder my heart started pounding.  When I was making the left turn in to the vet’s office – I almost turned around.  This was probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do.  They were all kind.  I was led in to a room in the back – sort of staging room.  The vet tech asked me a question that I was not prepared for – did I want him back afterwards?  I just looked at her blankly and I could barely choke it out – “I don’t know” – she said I didn’t have to make a decision right then – I could call her later and let her know.  Then she asked if I wanted to be in the room with him.  I couldn’t talk.  I had a lump in my throat.  As badly as I wanted to be there with him – I couldn’t do it.  I just hung my head and shook it – “no”

Lastly, she said – “take as much time as you need with him – when you’re ready – just knock on the door.”  The look on his face.  He looked up at me, innocently, and started wagging his tail.  If only he knew what was behind the other door – I don’t think he would have been wagging.  I hugged him hard and cried in to his neck.  I didn’t want to do this – but I knew I had to.  I spent about 5 minutes with him.  I finally stood up and walked over with him and knocked on the door.

Amanda opened the door – she has been our pet sitter for the last year.  Whenever we go out of town for any length of time – we would call Amanda and she would stay in our home and take care of the dogs.  I knew she worked there but I wasn’t expecting to see her.  She was in a gown.  I broke down when I saw her.  I knew Jake was going to be in good hands and would die peacefully with a friendly face he knew.  She asked me if she could hug me – I just shook my head.  After the hug, I handed her the leash and she took Jake in.  The door closed and I lost it again.  I just sat on the cushioned bench and cried.  I could hear them preparing everything in the room next door.  That made it even harder to sit there.  I had to leave the room.  I put on my sunglasses and headed to the car – where I just sat there for what seemed to be an eternity.  While I was sitting there I saw the vet come from the back  – I knew it was over.  This was so freakin’ hard to do.  He has been part of the family for a very long time.

When I got home – I walked through the door where my other dog Emmy was waiting.  I think she knew what was going on.  She followed me over to the couch – when I sat down she just put her head in my lap.  My wife and kids came out from the kitchen.  The kids took it very well.  I told them Jake wouldn’t be coming back.  My son – such a great kid – said to me – “that’s okay dad, he’s in heaven with God now.”  He’s right.  I know it is the best for Jake – but – it is still hard.

R.I.P. Jake – we miss you.

Hey all – this is one of those posts where I elevate the education level a bit for my readers.  I’m suspending my political diatribe today – although there is plenty of fodder given that bogus healthcare summit today.  P-BO pretty much had his ass handed to him on a silver platter – and – he showed his true arrogant colors.

Anyhow – Adie’s Pupil – WTF is that you ask and why should you care?  Well – not that you really should care – but – it is something that I have just been diagnosed with.  You’ll note that I haven’t been posting much recently.  Check out this picture:

Adie's Pupil

Yes – those are my baby blues. I know this pic is a little fuzzy – but – you can still see what it is I’m talking about.  Check out my right pupil  (left side of screen) compared to my left pupil (right side of screen).  You’ll see that my right pupil is larger than my left.  It has been like that for about 3 weeks now.  The obvious side effect to this is that my vision is blurred on the right side. My pupil will contract in the dark but will not constrict in the light.

One of the primary signs for brain injury or stroke is a single dilated pupil <—- that is your education piece – keep that in mind for the future. However, the major difference between that symptom and what is going on with me is that I had no other symptoms and it has lasted at least 3 weeks now.  If related to brain injury or stroke – the pupil is fixed and dilated and generally the damage will happen within 2 hours after this particular symptom – so – brain injury and stroke are out of the question.

I saw an opthalmologist on Monday. I was in the office for over 5 hours having every visual exam you can think of – all came back normal.  Today I went in for an MRI and a carotid doppler.  I fell asleep in the MRI chamber :)   Based on comments from the techs – it appears these are also normal. Techs aren’t allowed to say anything – so – I have to wait for the radiologist and the ophthalmologist to confirm the negative results.

Adie’s Pupil is considered a diagnosis of exclusion – meaning that all other causes get ruled out – and – when everything else is ruled out then the only thing left is this condition. It is also very rare in men.  Apparently, it manifests on its own and will also resolve on its own within 6 months.

Unfortunately, what this means is that until this resolves itself – my blogging may be limited because of the visual discomfort.  I can only sit in front of a computer screen for so long before it really starts playing havoc with my eyes.

Now – as a side note – if any of you watched the opening of the summit this morning and heard P-BO talk about his daughters – you will recall that he stated that when he took his children to the ER – and especially when talking about his daughter who had meningitis when she was a baby  and had to have a spinal tap – his initial thought was:

“In each of those instances I remember thinking while sitting in the emergency room what would have happened if I didn’t have reliable health care”

What a bullshit lie! I’ve had meningitis.  I’ve had the spinal tap.  I was out of work for 3 months because of it.  I can tell you that my first thought was not that I had reliable health care.  My initial thoughts were – “God this hurts.  When will it end?”  If his first thoughts were about reliable health care and not about the health of his daughter – he’s a freakin’ idiot and a bad father. Not once during this entire process going through the diagnostic phases did I ever think about what would have happened if I didn’t have reliable insurance – knowing that what I had going on was signs of brain trauma or stroke – THAT is what was on MY mind.

When my daughter was 2 and fell down the stairs and broke her arm and we rushed her to the ER – we were not thinking about reliable health care.  We were scared for our daughter and we were very empathetic to her pain.  Not once during the 5 month ordeal with the casting, resetting, and cast removal by a pediatric ortho specialist – not once did we ever think thank God we have reliable health care.

Even if we didn’t have “reliable health care” we still would have done anything and paid anything to take care of our daughter.  When I had meningitis I would have paid anything and done anything to be healed whether I had insurance or not – why? Because it is the responsible thing to do.

When I had my second child – I was not insured.  Not once did I ever complain about not having insurance.  Did I go broke over the 10′s of thousands of dollars of bills that I paid over that 9 month period? Nope.  I worked out payment arrangements with the physicians and hospital.  Why? Because that was the responsible thing to do.  I took care of my family and my children.

For P-BO to claim that what his primary thoughts were on the day his baby was having a spinal tap because she had meningitis was about what would have happened if he didn’t have “reliable health care” instead of doing what was necessary to comfort his child and concentrate solely on his children is that he is either a big fucking liar or he has no feelings whatsoever.


One of the great things about being a blog owner is that I get to use it as a sounding board as well!  I know there are a helluva lot of other things in the news today that I should, as a political blogger, be blogging about – but – this falls within the realm of personal responsibility and corporate big wigs who don’t give a shit about their customers – just the bottom line.

I and my family will embark on a personal indefinite boycott of Toys-R-Us.  I am not asking anyone else to join us.  However, if you feel so inclined after reading this – we welcome you.  I will be naming names, giving phone numbers, and locations.  I’ve been through this before with other companies – so – I don’t really give a shit at this point – because – I know in the end – if they decide to attempt to take any action against me – it will turn ugly for THEM real quickly.

While I may not be one of those big prominent bloggers – the fact of the matter is – 85% of my traffic comes from google searches.  With a PR of 4 – and with the right SEO – this post will hit in the top 20 – and possibly top 10 searches for Toys-R-Us.  Given this is the Christmas season and everyone is doing a lot of online shopping and searching – I have no doubt someone is going to come across this post and think twice about purchasing something from Toys-R-Us.

Here’s the story – on November 11, 2009 my wife went to the local Toys-R-Us located at 6233 Tacoma Drive, Port Richey, Florida 34688 – phone number (727) 842-8697.  There was a promotion going on – if you buy the Fisher-Price Loving Family doll house – you also get the Fisher-Price Loving Family mini-van free (while supplies last).  Well – we spent $160 and upgraded to the Fisher-Price Loving Family Grand Dollhouse Super Set.  With everything else going on and the other things we were buying – we forgot about the mini-van.  It wasn’t until we got home and realized we didn’t get it.  My wife immediately called the store and told them we forgot to get our Fisher-Price Loving Family mini-van.

The customer service representative we spoke to said they didn’t have the mini-van at that time and that is why the person at the check-out counter didn’t say anything about it.  However, she told us they would be expecting more in and to just come back with our receipt and we would receive a mini-van.

My wife was calling the store frequently to find out when they got the mini-van back in stock.  On December 2, 2009 the customer service representative for the above mentioned store said they just received another shipment in.  My wife explained the situation and she told her to come in with her receipt and she would get the mini-van.  On December 3, 2009 my wife went to the store to get her mini-van.  Mind you, this mini-van has a retail value of only $22.99.  However, that is a $30 savings and given that we stick to a budget for Christmas shopping – this was an extra $30 we could spend on something else for the kids.

While my wife was at the store, she decided to pick up a couple other things.  Once she got to the checkout counter she inquired about the mini-van.  A store employee named Tracy, we assume she was the manager, was standing in the customer service counter area next to the check out counter and overheard my wife’s conversation.  She snapped – and I do mean snapped – “that promotion is over.”  My wife tried to explain that someone from her store told her to bring in the receipt and she would get the mini-van.  Tracy proceeded to argue with my wife in front of other customers, berated and humiliated her, and told her that the promotion was over and no one in that store would ever tell anyone they could have something that wasn’t available.  My wife said this woman was really nasty to her.  She called me and told me what happened, so I immediately contacted Toys-R-Us at 1-800-ToysRUs and spoke with an individual named Connie and related the story.  She was very sympathetic to the story and promised she would send the complaint up to their corporate customer care and someone would call us within 4 – 7 days.

Today, I spoke to an individual named Holly at 1-800-961-5984.  I gave her my complaint reference number – 091202-006328.  She essentially parroted back my complaint – “So, you purchased the Fisher-Price Loving Family Grand Doll House Super Set during the promotional period that included a Fisher-Price Loving Family Mini-Van, correct?”  To which I replied in the affirmative.  “And at the time of the purchase the mini-van was not available correct?” Again, a reply in the affirmative. “And you were told to bring in a receipt of your purchase and you would get the minivan, correct?” – Again, in the affirmative – at this point, I’m thinking we’re almost home free and I would be getting that mini-van.  “And, when you got to the store, the store manager told you the promotion was over and you could not have the mini-van, correct?”  I said, “correct.”  Here’s where it all fell apart -

Holly – “The store manager was just following store policy.  The promotional period was over and it did say while supplies lasted.”

Me – “I get that.  So, given that your employee told my wife to bring in the receipt and we would receive our mini-van, when do we get it?”

Holly – “We stand behind our store managers.  It was a limited offer while supplies lasted.”

It took me a second to realize what she had just said – being the clown that I am – I blew a gasket

Me – “So, what you’re telling me is that a representative of your company made a promise that you do not intend to keep.  I paid $160 for that doll house knowing we would get a mini-van with it and now you’re telling me that you refuse to honor the agreement made by a company representative?”

Holly – “The store manager was following company policy.  Had the shipment come in during the promotional period, you could have gotten the mini-van.  Since the shipment came in to the store after the promotional period, you cannot have the mini-van despite what another employee said.”

At this point – I was real close to yelling in the phone -

Me – “Okay – I get it – so, this is essentially a bait-and-switch.  You keep a very limited supply in the store during the promotional period knowing you are going to run out and you tell everyone that they could buy the house now, keep the receipt, and get the mini-van later, knowing damned well the resupply shipment won’t be coming until AFTER the promotional period.  This is an unfair trade practice and is deceptive marketing.  I will be filing a complaint with the state.”

Holly – “Do what you need to do.  The promotion was over.”

Me – “Oh, you have no idea, Holly.  This isn’t over”

So – here I am now.  This was an obvious bait and switch to get people to buy that freakin’ expensive assed doll house.  I know the mini-van is only $23 and if I really want it, I could buy it.  But, it’s the principle of the thing at this point.  This is a big corporate conglomerate that really doesn’t give a shit about the customers.  It is all about the bottom line.  Geoffrey the Giraffe and the rest of those bozoes at Toys-R-Us suck!  I will never be a customer there again.  I am but one individual in a sea of millions.  This is a warning to all out there – Don’t Buy Anything From Toys-R-Us.  If you ever have a problem – they don’t care.  They will not do the right thing.

I have already filed my complaint with the state.  I will also be letting my local news agencies know about this as well.  One of them will probably pick it up as they each have a consumer advocate lawyer on staff who loves to take these kinds of stories on.  Whether I get my mini-van or not – I just wanted everyone out there to be very wary of Toys-R-Us.

If you’ve had a negative experience with these bastards – please leave your comment here.  I would love to compile a list – which will also help to bring this up in the search rankings on google.

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