Thanks Momma

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My Momma

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Thanks Momma

My mother passed away 39 years ago but I appreciate how she raised her 5 kids. We were a handful, but she got my sisters and I ready for church every Sunday in our cute little dresses and patent leather mary-janes and anklet socks and my brother in his jacket and tie. The values she instilled in us were a foundation for all our lives. As a teenager I thought my mother was very grouchy, but then I had 3 children and realized that my mother had 5 kids, 8 pregnancies, a baby who lived less than a month, several health issues and yet she still sought God and was even closer to Him in her last few years. My mother was a saint.

I enjoyed sitting around the kitchen table chatting with her in my late teens (not the early teens). There are times even now when I think “I want my Mommy”. Thank you Momma, Madeline Aynes Carr, you never gave up.

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Take me out to the hospital

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The County Hospital

It was a diverse crowd in the Emergency waiting room at our county hospital.The county hospital is where the low-income, indigent and those without insurance go for emergency or urgent medical care.I wondered how their financial situations compare to mine. Most of the people looked to be a bit lower-income than the ones I have seen in regular hospital waiting rooms.And I have been in many hospital waiting rooms. For several years I was a friend and semi-caretaker of a gentleman who had several serious illnesses. I had been to the county hospital with him before he became eligible for Medicare.He was then able to go to the local hospital, many times. We were frequent flyers.

Some of the people waiting were obviously in great pain or discomfort.But a person is still to behave and be quiet even in the Emergency waiting room. No moaning, crying loudly, etc. However some of the occupants of the nearly capacity crowd were not in pain and had brought relatives and plates of home cooked food.They knew what was coming. A long, long wait.

I was there with my daughter. She had apparently broken her ankle and  was in great pain. But the wait is long at the county hospital. It was two hours before she was taken to x-ray and another three hours before she was taken back to be seen by a doctor. By then her back hurt nearly as much as her leg. She had to sit so that nothing touched her ankle for  the slightest bump, was excruciating for her. We both ached form sitting for five hours. And were both very hungry which did not help her deal with the pain. She could barely walk with the crutches we happened to have. She had wrapped her ankle with an ace bandage, but she could still feel every bit of air that brushed her ankle as she hobbled to the triage room to be evaluated. She tersely told the nurse to be careful when she came too near her ankle and the nurse became brusque with her. Even in great pain, in our culture a grown woman is expected to be polite. The nurse went to get a wheelchair for my daughter and I hurriedly followed her to say, “I am sorry if my daughter was a bit surly but she is autistic and in great pain.” The nurse said “Oh” and after that became very sweet to Piper. I knew that just having to sit in such a crowded room was an assault on my daughter’s autistic hyper-senses.And I knew she might therefore have a little less filter on what she said to the medical personnel.

My stomach was growling and I was getting sleepy. At least the room was cool.It was 99 degrees outside so I appreciated that. A new wing and Emergency room was built on this hospital about six years ago,  but already it is not adequate. There are only two triage rooms where a patient is quickly evaluated and entered into the system,but only one is being used. serious conditions such as my friend used to have will get you moved to the front of the line but not just pain. While a few patients seemed to be using  their waiting time as a family reunion, most just looked tired. Life is very tiring for those of low income. Poor food or even not enough food may be part of the reason. The physical labor of most lower paid jobs surely contributes to the fatigue. However I believe the constant stress and worry of how to pay bills and buy food on totally insufficient salaries is the most basic cause of the constant tiredness. I know because since being laid off from my professional position I have been working retail, being paid less than a quarter of what I made four years ago. That is why we were at the county hospital.

Across the waiting room an apparently homeless older man with sun and dirt-darkened skin, long unkempt hair and a long uneven beard sat looking to be not sleeping but in a stupor. He was eventually placed into a wheelchair. As I went to find my daughter some tissues, I walked past him just as he slid out of the chair on to the floor and began to twitch and quiver. Those closest to him, seeing what was happening wanted to alert the staff but didn’t know what to say. Someone called out”Urgent, urgent!” But that wasn’t quite getting the staff’s attention. But since I had a bit of medical training, I yelled loudly “Seizure!” The staff then came running. It felt good to be in the right place at the right time to do something that needed to be done  that others weren’t prepared to do.

After only  five and half hours we were called back to be seen by a doctor. The ER was so full that my daughter’s bed was in the hall. On the way to it we passed the homeless man who seemed to be sleeping peacefully in his bed in the hall. As Piper laid in her bed, we watched as police officers escorted chained prisoners to their beds. The man next to us had been in a bar fight and needed his eye looked at. A dainty Asian lady was being sent home without the hospital being able to determine the cause of her nausea, but she was given medication and told to follow up with her doctor.

We only had to wait about 20 minutes before the doctor came to talk to us. He said yes her leg was broken. Her fibula had a dog-leg shaped fracture about two inches above the ankle. He said the bone had almost no displacement so she wouldn’t need surgery. “Surgery,” said my daughter, “I hadn’t considered that. So she was sent home with a prescription for pain medication and a boot instead of a cast, with orders to follow up with a podiatrist. I dropped her prescription off at the hospital pharmacy that was open 24 hours a day. The pharmacy tech said it would be at least an hour before it would be ready. I could not expect Piper to sit and wait any longer so I took her home and made  the 30-mile round trip back later to get her meds. I wasn’t happy about having to come back, but no matter how old your child is they are still your baby and you do what they need no matter the inconvenience.

C.G.

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Relaunching “My Life’s a Park”

After an excessively long hiatus due to some major life changes, it is time to begin again writing on this blog on a regular basis, at least weekly. I need it emotionally, I need it professionally and I hope you enjoy my offerings of humor, amazement, pathos, and beauty. Feedback on whether this blog is worth your time will always be appreciated, really.

C.G.

A few shots of Kentucky beauty for your enjoyment.

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Employment personality tests, should your future depend on one?

Employment personality tests, should your future depend on one?

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Psuedoscience that can keep you from getting a job

I had to take a pre-employment “Character” test recently. It is much the same as a personality test. This test will have some bearing on whether I will be hired for a job I have applied for, (yes, I am unemployed again). This fact made me want to know how and what this test was supposed to measure. When I read the instructions, I had to laugh out loud. “Really,” I thought, “Will they also be using phrenology or reading my palm to see if I will be a productive and honest employee?” The instructions are as follows:

This test is a biometric test based on movement. There are 3 parts to the test. Each part should be completed on one or more separate sheets of plain white unlined 8.5” x 11” paper. PLEASE NOTE: The speed of your movements is very important. You should take the test at your natural or fastest speed.

On a single sheet of plain white paper, please draw (by freehand) one or more of each of the following shapes: a triangle, a square, a circle, and a ladder. They can be of any size. Do NOT trace the shapes or use a ruler, straight edge, compass or other device. At the bottom of the page, please print your name, phone number, and email address.

 On a single sheet of plain white paper, write 10 different numbers of any size. At the bottom of the page, please print your name, phone number, and email address.

 On two or more sheets of plain white paper, please copy the following paragraphs twice, once in your (cursive) handwriting and once in your printing. Remember, speed is more important than beauty or legibility. Two paragraphs of motivational quote follow.

That’s it. From this the company promises employers:

“The Boston Test” is an advanced form of behavioral biometrics based on movement, capturing a clear picture of innate behaviors, aptitude, motivation and character. “The Boston Test” provides the platform to assess the combination of an advanced form of “The Big Five” as well as an expanded form of Jungian Typology for exacting personality types. This combination provides a very accurate method to assess candidates for hire and accurately predict the probability of success on a job specific basis.

Based on 45 years of research and practical real-world hiring experience, the founders of Boston Biometrics have developed a pre-employment test that will screen out all the psychos before you hire them. The test lets you avoid job applicants who are prone-to-commit violence, rape, bullying, sexual harassment, embezzlement, fraud, theft, and sabotage. It also screens out the profit-robbing habitual time thieves.

This proprietary test is affordable, scientifically-validated, and EEOC compliant. It uses movement-based biometrics – a breakthrough technology that can’t be manipulated to the subject’s advantage. The test is based on the proven science that your movements are a direct reflection of how your brain is organized and processes information. Psychos process information entirely different than the majority of the population. The more unbalanced the psychos are, the easier it is for the technology to identify them, making it virtually impossible for a dangerous applicant to slip through your employment gates.

It is hard for me to believe that this company is for real and that the company I wish to work for takes this test seriously. I researched the test on the internet and could find almost nothing about it. The test company’s web site gives no explanation of how they determine the taker’s character. The company calls its method biometrics to make it sound scientific, but it is about as scientific as reading palms. Biometrics is the measurement of various aspects of a person’s body usually for identification purposes. The one article I found about the test was on a business web site and lumped it in with other personality tests used by employers. The article pointed out that these tests basically have no basis in science and tests of these tests’ reliability has shown them to be inaccurate and all but useless. They basically are just the opinion of their creators. Even the Myer Briggs has been shown to not be effective. It seems personality is not a good indicator of success. Yet the business world continues to use them. Don’t the leaders in the business community read?

The test I have to take says it can tell not just my personality but my character, my ability to tell right from wrong and the likelihood of me committing a crime by a small sample of my handwriting and which number I choose. Really? So I researched hand writing analysis and it is considered quite inaccurate and basically a pseudoscience. Science is just beginning to be able to tell personality traits using the top technology of brain scans. I am surprised that the company will admit that is uses a method as primitive as handwriting analysis and which shape I choose and how I draw it. It reminds me of the folded paper fortune tellers (cootie catchers) that we used in grade school to “tell our futures.” And this one is going to help determine mine. Should I laugh or cry?

C.G.

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April 1st !!!!!

April 1st !!!!!

What a surprise

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April Fools

April Fools

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April Fools

April Fools

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