Friday, November 20, 2009

"Education is what survives when what has been learned has been forgotten." ~ Skinner

I realize that I have been delinquent in updating this. I apologize.

Anyhoo. I finished up the wonderful joy that is officer development school in Rhode Island, which by the way turned out to be a lot harder than I had planed on it being. I think mostly because I was really unprepared to deal with a bunch of just baby snobs. So, my thought process went something like this: It was the first week and they were asking for volunteers for the jobs, now my first plan had been to do the safe thing that I did when I went through basic training and that is just hide in the middle and never volunteer for anything ever. But this was different this time, I chose to take it all on head on. Grab it by the horns if you will. So why not vol for the student leader guy right? I mean whats the worst thing that could happen? This is not really that tough compared to what I have been doing lately. So I was the only guy who volunteered for it, so I will be damned if I did not actually get it.

It was not that bad at all as far as just the job, but dealing with all the other students was the biggest problem for me. There were about 10 prior enlisted and its not really all that hard, but the senior chiefs screwed with us a lot in stupid little ways, all the normal fun and games. I think the weirdest thing that I can remember is that the first three times I pissed one of my classmates off the very first FIRST reason out of their mouth why I should respect them was that they have a PHD. Its odd, here are a bunch of the smartest people in the world and asking them to clean the floor or take out the trash is so far below them. Its sad almost. They are 30 something and have never been outside the bubble of education. Smartest dumb people ever. But I got fired after the first week so that was fine with me. Then I could just hide for the rest of the time, I had done my duty.

So, step forward to arriving at my first Navy duty station. Naval Hospital Guam. I get here late night and my sponsor meets me at the airport and he happens to look like an extra from Miami Vice. Purple silk shirt with a couple too many buttons unbuttoned and his chest hair and gold bling popping out. But he takes me to lodging in his Jag so thats nice of him. He is a nurse from the ward so does not know much of anything about where or what, so I get plugged into fam med the next day and wonder around in my dress blues sweating my ass off. I get about two days into the check in and someone stops the check in because my bilit number that is on my orders is not in fam med, but in the ER, so I have to go talk to the CO (commanding officer) and XO (executive officer) and DFA (Director for Administration) and a bunch of other three letter people. But the bottom line is that I ended up working in the ER, not fam med.

Its FANTASTIC! The ER has been PA-less for 6 months so they are super happy to have me there. The ER is booked for two PAs and one GMO (general medical officer aka an intern) but have had none of the above for the last year and change. So, I am doing my best to not suck it up too much, but damn, its been a while since I was in a real good clinic setting. That was my biggest fear about going to the ER, I told them outright that I am new, I suck, you have to be patient and hold my hand and pull me along. But the docs here are so freaking good about that. The department head doc is a really awesome guy and was talking with me last night and he was really excited about something because I had asked him a question. He said: Oh, its great, we have not had anyone here in a long time to teach so its nice to be able to have someone to teach that wants to learn.

God, its fun. I love this stuff.

So, now that I am an old salt and have a dozen shifts in the ER under my belt as a naval PA and am getting ready for another shift today I decided that I should at least update you as far as what I have been doing and where the adventure has taken me so far.