It seems that every week or two, I need a hardcore ‘maintenance’ day. I treat myself like a computer, it’s like doing diagnostics on everything. Registry cleaning, defragging, virus scanning, the works. Or maybe it’s more accurate that I treat myself like a character in an RPG, and every now and then I overestimate just how much a human mind, body and spirit can take.
Last Friday was one such day. Maintenance comes in some pretty strange forms though, and I guess from person to person it varies.
Ninja Assasin. That movie turned out to be pretty much everything I expected it to be– outrageous fight scenes, awful scripting. In combination, it was a fun experience. [Supergirl] was talking to her friends about movies a few days before seeing the movie with me, and her friend was commenting along the lines of what about that movie Ninja Assasin! Only stupid people would want to watch that! and yeah, that’s me! It was fun and there were scenes where Supergirl next to me was practically covering her eyes, some of the scenes in that movie were so extreme. And I don’t even always mean the scenes where they were killing things– the ‘romance’ scenes in the movie were pretty ass kicking too. This movie really just reset my brain in a good mood after a week of work, culminating with that 11 hour FT shift from hell.
I suppose it goes without saying, but Supergirl is a part of my maintenance too. I don’t mean ‘maintenance’ in the way we sometimes talk about those little things we have to do for our girlfriends just to keep them happy– I mean, on the contrary, that spending time around her just fixes everything wrong with my day. I think the when I got into this relationship the thing I did right, as well as the thing I did wrong, is that I had no expectations. It was the right thing to do because then when I met Supergirl, I think I did a pretty good job of just taking her as she was. Unlike with previous relationships, I didn’t try to change her or try to fix her life in any way that she didn’t want to (at least not that I know of yet). That was probably the most significant problem with me when I was going out with [BadMedicine] or [Chamchikimbap].
On the other hand, it’s also that Supergirl doesn’t need me to take care of anything in her life really. And that’s very different. I guess it’s just that she’s got her shit together, because she’s got it together, and for everything else, it’s as if our priorities are in sync.
It’s was a mistake to not have any expectations because I think that expectations are what make a relationship grow in a sense, but now that I’ve got a better idea of who she is, I guess the truth is that I’m developing them. Maybe that’s the way it should be done? See the situation first, and then see what can be done with it. Rephrased in terms of relationships, perhaps it is to start a relationship, build the foundations, and then start setting goals together.
Time: 2:00AM November 30th
Location: @work, in the crash room
Batteries: 90% (I’ve been sleeping a crapload during my day and a half off work)
[JoD]: “Clear for x-rays!”
Eveyone shuffles out of the way hurriedly.
“Man, do you think they could give us more warning next time?” I ask.
“It’s okay,” mumbles one of the nurses. “Those were just my ovaries! Who needs kids anyhow.”
Everyone laughs. Well, that is, everyone except the kid on the table.
Sometime early this morning, a 16 year old boy, while driving his girlfriend around, managed to somehow wrap his car around a cement block. The girlfriend wobbles out of the car in the freezing rain, took a few steps, then passed out. The boyfriend is still unconscious when he gets into our crash room, and nobody knows why because, despite the horrific state of his car, he’s not obviously hurt in any way.
But they figure that it might be some combination of the crash and what the police suggest may be drugs they expect to find in his system once the blood tests come back.
An interesting development that [Dr. N] pointed out– such an event is now called an MVC, instead of the old term, the MVA. What’s the difference? The old term stood for “Motor Vehicle Accident,” but has since been recently ammended to “Motor Vehicle Crash.” Its mostly a philosphoical difference, but the gist of it is that nothing that happens when you’re behind the wheel is an accident– there’s always something you could have done to prevent it. There are no accidents.
He’s in the crash room for about an hour and a half, and I’m there thinking, man. They make 16 year olds /big/ nowadays. He’s probably a head taller than me and lean. What do they put in cafeteria meals that they didn’t have when I was in highschool?
Time: 4:22 AM
When I look at the last decade of my life years of my life from about the time that I was that kid’s age, I really changed quite a bit.
I ask what is it that they put in cafeteria meals jokingly that makes that kid that tall– but the fact is that at his age, I was probably just as dumb as this kid on the table.
Time: 5:29 PM
Batteries: 99% (I just woke up)
See, the thing is, when I was his age, I wasn’t driving yet, but within a few years I would be drinking, playing arcades, and fighting on concrete. How many times did I have a few strained ligaments ? How many times did I have a bone broken? A joint dislocated? And how many of those times was it a neck or head injury, just like the kind that the kid now needed a Miami-J collar to stabilize?
When I went to Emergency at the Montreal General Hospital for the first time after the first Dawson/Marianopolis tournament we organized because it looked like I was bleeding from my eye, because I’d gotten punched in the eye one too many times and I’d burst blood vessels all about the inside of it and they were afraid that my retina might detach, could I write on a form that it was an accident?
That the person I was contending against only ‘accidentally’ hit me in the eye that many times?
Or could we say that this situation could have been prevented– I could have done like my mom always said– that is to say, never done martial arts in the first place, and just taken the time to do this or that homework project better and become a better student.
There’s a bit of a duality to the way I philosophically look at the purpose of a hospital, and it follows, in some sense, a philosophy of gaming. The hospital where I work at, or any of them for that matter, is, within limits, a way of healing you. Sure, that’s obvious. But just as there there are first aid kits, potions and inns in games that can always bring you back from the worst of redline situations, there are some plot-device situations where you become forever crippled, or worse still, you die.
A hospital comes with a cautionary tale. Everytime you go there, medical and non-medical staff will make jokes about you. It’s a given. We’ll goad you or your parents for being so stupid and not preventing this thing that’s happened to you. But on the other hand, that’s just what you have to accept– you will make mistakes, and not only that, you will have to live with them and suffer the ridicule of it. If only you were conscious to hear what we say about you. But deep down, we believe that the work is important because people would like an extra life. Everyone does. Everyone wants extra chances. I don’t believe that there’s anything like karma within the span of a single lifetime– because I think that after a certain amount of time elapsed between two seemingly oppositely charged ‘karmaic’ events, it’s just coincidence, and there’s no real sense of deserving except in the convention of a legal sense upheld by society. But I do believe that we serve this initiative, of giving people extra chances, because deep down we want more continues of our own.
In a sense, the reason why we keep doing this, is, in a sense: to encourage stupidity.
Could you imagine if everyone played things safely? Look at a Mario Bros game. If you had a single life, and you could never be brought back, would you even risk jumping over that hole? What if you slipped? It’d be all over. Nothing would happen if we didn’t have some capacity for risk survival. And, well, if we just stood there and did nothing, the timer would eventually drain to zero and we’d die anyhow.
Because if I’m ever to get anything out of life, it’s giong to be through those ambiguous situations where I’ve got to take a risk and try something different. Because that’s how we learn, that’s how we grow.
I don’t mean this exclusively in terms of physical injuries and physical lessons. I mean this in terms of everything. No matter what decision you make, you can strike gold, you can get something very uninteresting compared to what you thought, or you could get something worse. Maybe you’re just shuffling the cards, and for some things you win some things you lose.
That’s just the way it works I suppose– so we have systems in place to pick up the pieces. People say “why don’t you learn from your mistakes” but what people don’t always realize when judging others is that no situation is always the same, and if someone makes the ‘same mistake’ more than once it might be because they think this is the right thing to do, and they’re just waiting for a lucky break that has nothing to do with them so that it finally works out.
Sometimes it’s not even that dramatic. I mean, it’s all about practice I suppose. You try to isolate variables, figure out how the system works, and then work towards your goals. Some people just seem more like idiots than others, but it’s a continuum really from risk/security, just like in investing. I guess the real importance is to be systematic, and the paradigm by which we do so is who we are.