Sunday, December 18, 2016

Dispatches From "The Quiet Room" Providing Subdued Care for the Clinically Disturbed

Given the nervousness generated by the holiday season, I thought it would be enlightening to speak to a pro at handling stress.  So we motored over to The Quiet Room and asked to interview someone.  Roxie Rhodes, the head nurse, was happy to do it. 

She remarked that it would be nice to talk to someone (presumably) sane so "Ask me anything, honey - I am so HERE!" aside "Thank God the money's good."

Q "Who's in residence now that you can talk about?"

RR "Funny you should ask because this afternoon we just checked in a couple and their cat!  We usually don't take pets - you can imagine; we have enough to do keeping the incontinent dry - but we felt so sorry for the couple - unusual in this business where we have to deal with lunatics that think they are their mothers - and, honey, half of them are the men!  (laughs)  Anyhow,  all three of them showed up around 3 this afternoon.  The cat was in a carrier yowling away - that sound could make you bonkers, know what I mean? and their arms were covered with scratches and bite marks.

We told them we'd put Miss Kitty and her cage in a nice room to calm her down so that they could peacefully ell us why they needed some time here.  I had Nurse Gupta do that (broom closet) and resumed interviewing them.

"It was a sad story.  The cat was being hydrated every day against the possibility of a diagnosis of kidney disease.  If you've never done it, hydrating a cat is just like hydrating a human.  Hang up that big ole bag o Ringers, run the line down to that big fat needle and jab it in wherever it seems to be a good idea.  In a cat's case, it's the loose skin at the back and just a little below the neck.

"The cat didn't like being hydrated and she went bat shit crazy every day.  They had to do a half hour rodeo just to get her out from under the bed!  And when they did, they had to wrap her in a towel to try to contain her paws and their long, long, murderously sharp claws.  The cat was wily and they held out their red- streaked arms to prove it. 

A friend told them about The Quiet Place and they figured that we'd be able to hydrate the cat - after all we drug people up every day - and they could have a quiet cup of tea ("Or a dirty gin martini?" said the wife hopefully - we may be seeing her again in the not-so-distant future...) and pay whatever bill we presented them with which sounded do-able to me.  The Board is very anxious to pry ever last dollar out of the billfolds of our guests."

"And so, as I tell this, the couple is enjoying refreshments in our lovely dining room/bar and Staff tranquilize darted the cat and filled her tank up.  I think $1,000 is reasonable, don't you?  No reason to bother the Board with all of this anyhow. They wouldn't want to know we'd treated a cat."

Licking the bills the grateful husband had given her to count them, she muttered, "Least said, soonest mended" as she strode down the hall to the broom closet.  "That cat is awfully quiet," she said.  "I hope she's all right - she's got a real pair of suckers for owners and I'd like to see them again."

No comments: