Wednesday, March 08, 2006

So I’m a Big Idiot, What Else is New?

It was 1993 when I went drove to Toronto in the family station wagon to visit my good friend Jos. We had a great first night meeting up with his Canadian friends and meeting the girlfriend of the month.

The next morning Jos had gone off to work so I was sleeping in. A few hours later I rushed to the bathroom in great pain and blood in my urine. It was very scary. I was in a foreign place, no health insurance, and in a great deal of pain. After a few glasses of water and an aspirin I took a hot shower. Things had passed. So I didn’t mention anything to Jos when we met up later that day.

Strippers in Ontario go full out naked. The clubs they dance in also serve drinks. It was during a lap dance from a very hot, yet skanky, woman that the pain returned. I stumbled through the smoke filled seed location to find the men’s room. This must be God punishing me for lustful habits.

An hour later I emerged from the bathroom to return to Jos who had been so occupied at the time he didn’t notice I was gone. I explained what had happened that day and he laughed at my fear of my maker.

“You’ve got a kidney stone you idiot!” He blurted out.

So yesterday, as I lay on my apartment bathroom floor in a similar wretched pain between throwing up, I learned two things. First, I need a new floor mat. Mine smells musty. I hope not to be nose down in it for three hours again, but just in case, I’m getting a new one. The second thing I learned, I need an emergency plan.

If it had been my appendix rather then another kidney stone who would I have called? At what point do you call 911? Before this, my rule of thumb has been, if there is blood, call 911. But if it’s about to burst, I’m thinking it’s worth the call. What are your rules on 911? Or at what point do you go to the hospital?


  1. Call 911 if you think you're going to die within a matter or minutes (heart attack, choking, extreme bleeding). Otherwise, call a taxi or a friend to take you to the hospital.

  2. I agree with Anne on the 911 issue. Oh, and kidney stones are bad.

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  4. Dude, wang pains are the worst. Please don't ever write about this again. My peter hurts just thinking about it.

  5. Trust your instincts.

    We have a number here to call if we are unsure. We can call, speak to a nurse and if they think it merits it they telephone the ambulance .

    Take care of yourself!

  6. We are not big ambulance or hospital people at my house. When I was a kid, something literally had to be falling off or a bone had to be poking through the skin to warrant a trip to the ER. My mom had a burst appendix last year and made it through a full 24 hours in agony before she let my dad take her to the emergency room. We live 3 minutes from the hospital, so we drive. If you can't drive, and you don't have anyone to take 911. And don't feel bad if you have to do it!

  7. I don't have a plan like that. Yikes. I better get one!