Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Myth vs. Reality


So, here it is, Tube Day Tuesday, but would you believe I don’t really have anything about TV to say today?  Unheard of, right? 

Actually, the BlogHer prompt for yesterday was to tell about your favorite character of all time, and I had toyed with the idea of tackling that one—as soon as I could figure out just who that would be.  But this evening I got a phone call that pretty much put television out of my head for the moment.

My sister is in the hospital, and has been since Sunday, though today is the first I heard about it.  Incidentally, I’ve always been a little suspicious of those storylines on doctor shows when people don’t tell their family they’re in the hospital because they don’t want to worry anyone.  I mean, who does that?  Well, apparently my sister.  Thankfully, she’s not too sick for me to tell her that her silence caused me to conjure up much worse possibilities than what’s actually going on.

Anyway, by today’s medical standards, what’s going on is fairly routine—lots of testing to try to identify a cause for some minor chest pain.  Sounds pretty scary, but, like I said, these days that sort of thing is pretty common place.  Which is probably why TV didn’t leave my head entirely.

As I sat there in her room visiting this evening, I couldn’t help compare medical reality with the doctor shows we see on television.  The first thing I thought about was the room itself.  She’s in the newer hospital in our town, only been open a few years, so it’s shiny and inviting and has patient rooms like you’d see on TV:  spacious, equipped with several visitor chairs and a DVD player, and doors with a window and a door knob.  (Well, not exactly a knob, more like a handle, but you get the idea.)  At our older hospital—and every other hospital I’ve ever been in—there are no windows to the hallway, and the doors don’t really latch, you just push them open or closed as the whim strikes you.  Actually, now that I think about it, a couple of years ago, Granny was in the ICU at our old hospital, and her room was fairly similar to the one my sister is in now; the door might have even latched, though I can’t say for certain.  Maybe eventually all the rooms will be remodeled to look like the new ones.  Then we’ll be all fancy-dancy like on the teevee.

And, just between you and me, I’ll tell you the one thing I always wonder about when I watch doctor shows and often when I’m actually in a hospital:  just how much “extra curricular” activity is actually going on between those folks? I mean, if you watch Grey’s Anatomy, or ER, or, you know, just about any soap opera, all those doctors and nurses and random others are involved in romantic relationships, and they seem to like to consummate those relationships frequently, and all over the hospital.  The on-call rooms at least make a little bit of sense, seeing as how it’s serving as a bedroom, though I wouldn’t think it would offer a whole lot of privacy.  But the supply closets and empty patient rooms-- and other places—I just don’t know.  Seems pretty unrealistic to me, even if the folks are spending 18-20 hours a day there.   Not to mention unsanitary.  Eww.  And, it really does make you wonder if windows on all the rooms are really the best ideas.

So, maybe next time you have to be at a hospital, just to take  your mind off of things for a while, you can sit and wonder about the medical staff providing your service, and just what they might be doing when they’re not poking and prodding at the patient.  I think you’ll be glad most of those exploits are saved for television.  Or maybe you’ll just be glad that you don’t have my obsession with television and all those things will never even cross your mind.