Some time ago, I had a day that was one of those days that makes you really glad your are off today. I swear to god, I had Uncle Jr from the Sopranos as one of my patients, except that my Uncle Jr was in his very elderly and about 95% deaf. The guy was still sharp as a tack, but just…..really….really…. hard of hearing. While a patient in the ED, overall, he was just fine. Now you know how people who are hard of hearing tend to talk louder since they can’t actually hear their own voice? Imagine hearing a patient shouting this the from across the ED
“OH JESUS, JESUS HELP, I KNOW I”M DYING, THIS IS IT, THE LAST FAREWELL, I DON”T WANT TO DIE!.”
The guy is totally fine mind you. So I go see him. And I have to shout back at him, damn near the top of my lungs to get him to hear me. Patient privacy is out the window and in this case as the whole ED is listening.
Me: SIR, YOU ARE NOT GOING TO DIE
UJr: WHADDYA MEAN I’M NOT GOING TO DIE? I KNOW IT, I JUST KNOW IT”
Me: NOT TODAY SIR.
UJr: I”M NOT GOING TO DIE? OH HEY, THAT’S GREAT NEWS! GREAT NEWS! HEY, ARE YOU ITALLIAN? YOU LOOK LIKE A GOOD ITALIAN BOY (keep in mind I am pasty and white with freckles)
Me: WELL SIR, I”M HALF ITALIAN!
UJr: I KNEW IT, I JUST KNEW IT. THANK YOU JESUS! I KNEW THEY’D FIND A GOOD PAESAN TO TAKE CARE OF ME. DO YOU HAVE ANY FRESH TOMATOES I COULD HAVE? I COULD KILL FOR SOME FRESH TOMATOES. OH THANK GOD THERE IS A GOOD PAESAN HERE TO TAKE CARE OF ME
I was hereby referred to as the paesan by the patient for the rest of his time in the ED. 3 hours later, we finally got him on his way home. But not before he shouted a few other gems…
UJr: “HEY PEASAN, I”M GONNA TAKE GOOD CARE OF YOU. WHAT’S YOUR ADDRESS? I”M GOING TO SEND YOU A BIG CHECK WHEN I GET HOME”
Ujr: “NURSE, BRING ME SOME DINNER
Female Nurse: “I’l bring you something to eat soon”
UJr: “I SAID TO BRING ME MY DINNER, RIGHT NOW”
Through and through, the guy was old school Italian and kept us laughing all afternoon long.