Valmont Bike Park

8 04 2011

Valmont Bike Park under construction

Alchemist is giddy about the new Valmont Bike Park being built in Boulder.  In fact, we are so excited about this great project that we have become official sponsors.  Look for us on the placard listing the sponsor names when the park is finished. Syd and Jake are sponsors too. If you haven’t seen the construction yet, it’s worth going by and checking out the massive mounds of dirt and impressive hardware. If you are interested in donating, here’s the link.

Video of Mike’s Hard Crash at the Cape Epic

3 04 2011

Mike and Thomas were having a great day hanging with the pros in the Queen Stage down in the Cape Epic.  Thomas found his legs, and they were both riding well until the last 2k when a rider went down in front of Mike.  Mike was wearing the camera, so you get to see his perspective as he goes down.  Somehow he was able to limp to the finish as Thomas nursed him home. The unedited video of the crash as well as the fancified version is below.  Hard to watch, but he’s okay. A kidney bruise and hip contusion forced him out of the race.  Heal up, Mike.

2011 Absa Cape Epic’s SS 5 crash from TDA_Boulder on Vimeo.

2011 Absa Cape Epic’s Stage 5 from TDA_Boulder on Vimeo.

Burning Nostrils and The Cape Epic

30 03 2011

Neti Pot

Saw a young lady who gagged on her medication which had gotten stuck in her throat.  As she gagged,  partially dissolved pill particles filled her nostrils.  The medication she’s on is apparently quite acidic, and it caused her a great deal of distress, physical and emotional.  Her watering eyes grew puffier and puffier as she belted out profanity-laced screams for help.  The solution, of course, was simple.  I sprung into action and called for a massive dose of pharmaceutical-grade Neti Pot.  Neti-Pot, baby.  Okay,  so we don’t actually have a Neti Pot in the ER.  But a 60cc syringe and a Sodium Bicrabonate solution is the next best thing.   It worked, sort of.  She felt better while neti-potting, but was back to burning when she finished.  So I did what any good doctor would do.  I ignored the root cause of her problem and tried to mask it with nebulized Lidocaine.  It worked, sort of .  Her tongue was completely numb anyway.  But it was all still better than seeing another young lady with abdominal pain without a cause.

Thomas and Mike with the Justin’s Nutbutter Team have been battling heat, exhaustion, and other competitors down in South Africa in the Cape Epic.  95 degree temps and more dust than West Texas.  Sounds fun.  These guys are silly strong.  It’s March, and they are in peak condition.  It’s early enough in the season that I still think that a hour on the trainer is a big effort.  Check out the video.

Taint Love

26 03 2011

In the spirit of proliferating more semi-inappropriate propaganda about the netheregions, here is the Alchemist sticker as promised.  Available for purchase?  Maybe.

Alchemist Tainted Love Sticker

Brings a whole new meaning to Soft Cell

Taint Pus is great fodder for creativity

12 03 2011

So I had a guy face down, moaning, on all fours in the stretcher the other day.

He’d been languishing on a business trip with a sore tush and a long airplane ride.   He stepped off the plane, drove to the hospital, and lay there prone in my ER, waitin’ for his doctor.   After an awkard introduction, we got down to business, and I found a juicy lump o’ pus sittin’ on his taint.  We got him set up for a little slice and dice.  Certainly, an 11 blade scalpel in your taint can’t feel good, but my guy was a trooper.  He bit the pillow and muffled his sobbing–enough for me to do some thinking.   I had a sudden Eureka moment as I was milking his abscess.

“Taint. Taint. Tainted.  Tainted Love . . . TAINTED LOVE!”

Could be a great sticker.  Seriously.   Ser-i-ous-ly.  Working out the design.  Stay tuned.

The Pannus, The CREEPER, and Cycling Kit Sale

20 02 2011


Another night shift, another blog post.  I spend most of my time and energy trying to avoid looking at the clock. As the old adage goes, a watched pot never boils.

The average age in the ER tonight is 18.  Not our usual geriatric clinic, but our usual vague symptoms with no diagnosis to be had.   What’s with the youth these days?   It’s Saturday night, the feelin’s right, and half the population between 15 and 30 chose to visit the ER tonight instead of raving or drinking or huffing or whatever young people do on Saturday nights.

Buuuut, I do have a straight forward case.  Sort of.  First, I need to preface this with a glossary of terms:

Pannus: The apron of loose skin, tissue and fat that occurs in the lower portion of the abdominal wall
Suprapubic Catheter: A suprapubic catheter (tube) drains urine from your bladder. Rather than being inserted through the urethra, it is inserted into your bladder through a small hole in your belly.

Young lady had her suprapubic catheter cut while her boyfriend was changing her dressing (Why she has a catheter is beyond the scope of this blog).   She came in leaking urine from the lacerated catheter. Simple enough. Pull the old one, put in a new one, right? But I was forewarned that I had to measure the depth of insertion beforehand because it needed to go through about 12 inches of pannus. Turned out to be easy enough by comparing the spot from the old catheter and marking it on the new one. There was a little resistance, but a little lube fixed that. She was actually my easiest and most pleasant patient of the night.
Praise Allah for easy fixes!

In between saving the future of America from the ills of minor discomfort, The Creeper was brought to my attention. As one the nurses aptly stated, “So they do have a name for that thing you do.”  Yes, folks.  I’ve put this on my list of dances to master, along with the dances from Napolean Dynamite, Can’t Buy Me Love, and Thriller.  I’m breaking it out at the next wedding.  If that animated GIF at the top bothers you, you should stop looking at it.

Before you watch the video, you should know that Alchemist is offering a screamin’ deal on custom cycling kits and merino wool.  Good til the end of February.

Whatta Man and NAHBS

16 02 2011

At what point in a marriage does all that lusty exuberance lose it’s luster?  Fella came to the ER in the middle of the night for belly pain.  The pain is in the left upper part of his belly, which is like a wasteland for definable diagnoses.   Nothing really surgically bad happens up there, unless you rupture your spleen, which doesn’t usually happen spontaneously.  In the end, I usually throw a delicious beverage known as a GI Cocktail at these folks, and sometimes run some labs for show.  As I was pressing on his rotundness, his wife and 1 year old came trudging in, foggy-eyed and bloodshot.  Dude, really?  You couldn’t have come in on your own?  In all your valiant maleness, you drug in the wife and baby?  He wasn’t here to impress, clearly.

Of course, this all coming from the the romantic, who for the most part, forgot what holiday came to pass a couple days ago.  Let he who hath not lost all chivalry cast the first stone.

Next week, Claire and Hannah are headed to the North American Handmade Bike Show (NAHBS) in Austin, TX.   Booth #405.  Check out the exhibitor list .   We got top billing! (because they are listed in alphabetical order).

The Best Superbowl Commercial . . . of all time

7 02 2011

Back in the blog saddle.  The fam spent a warm “business” vacation in sunny San Diego.   Had an ER conference to attend.  I go so that I can be force fed all the latest information that I can’t find the stomach to ingest while at home.  But like my under-sized 3 year old, I turned my head and ran from the incoming spoon full of life-giving sustenance.  Instead of listening to the latest medical literature on “Hypothermic Therapy after Spontaneous Return of Circulation” or “Malignancy Related Electrolyte Emergencies”, I spent much of the time in the kiddie pool or ogling the large mammals at the Zoo and Wild Animal Park.

So along that vein, in a rare Monday afternoon shift moment of peace, I found the best Superbowl commercial . . . of all time.  But before you enjoy it, make note, we’ll be offering a limited time super sale on the wool jerseys in the next couple weeks. So stay tuned.

Pole Dancing, Pus, and Bike Share

20 01 2011

Hairy Pole Dancer

Saw a young lady the other day for a festering boil in her armpit.  It wasn’t the first time she had been in to the ER for the same problem, and the scar from her previous drainage was visible adjacent to today’s incision.  She had been shaving her armpits, and I explained to her that she should consider going au natural.  She responded that she needed to shave for her job.  Of course, the next obvious questions was “What do you do?”

“I’m a dancer.”

“Cool.  What kind of dance? Ballet, Jazz, Lindyhop?”


Wasn’t sure how to respond.  (“Oh, how lovely! Are the benefits good?”) My silence was two-fold.  I felt silly about not knowing what “dancer” really means, and I fully understood why it would be necessary to be well shorn while you are sticking your junk up in someone else’s grill.  My ill-conceived response was less than ideal.

“Well . . . I think . . . I guess . . . don’t you think your clients might prefer to see pit hair than pus?”

I need to learn when to keep my mouth shut.

Plague Vector

Boulder Bike Share is coming to Boulder.  Continuing the recent trend of  using  Walt’s blog as fodder for my blog, here’s Walt’s take on it.  Keep in mind that Walt is grumpy and cynical (and hilarious).  Personally, I like the novelty of the idea, no matter how impractical.   (n.b., we still have Bike Share T-shirts in stock and on sale.)  Just elevating the awareness of bicycle riding is always good in my book.  It’s better than wasting our money and efforts protecting plague-infested vermin (read, prairie dogs), even if they are kinda cute.

Toothy Ovaries and Alchemist on Kilimanjaro

10 01 2011

Bum a lift back to where I belong?

The weather outside is frightful, but inside, the ER is delightful, which may explain why everyone seems to want to come to the ER when it’s sh*t outside.   Crap weather usually dissuades the lazier, less motivated un-sick to brave the elements just to see yours truly.  But yesterday’s crowd was apparently bred from a heartier stock of patients.  Aside from the usual colds and nosebleeds, saw a lady with belly pain who had teeth in her ovaries.  Whether this may have been the cause of her pain was beside the point.  The presence of dentition in her reproductive organs prompted the obligatory debate amongst the ER staff of whether those pearly whites represented her reabsorbed twin.  This, of course, would mandate that she have TWICE the powers of an ordinary human.

Saw another couple because they were innocently enjoying a beverage at the local bar when the next thing they knew, he was being arrested, and she was getting a ride home from a friend.  In a Hangover-esque type script, they had somehow ended up 40 miles away from the bar, him in cuffs, and her, bewildered about how they ended up there.  Neither of them remembered a thing between the last drink and the Big House.  They were looking to get tested for GHB or some kind of date-rape type drug.   To my amazement, we actually have a date-rape drug panel.  GHB, Rohypnol, Ketamine, among others.  With 30cc of urine and a sizable chunk of coin, you can find out if that Roofie really was the culprit for last night’s amnestic shenanigans.  Or maybe you were just really drunk.  Again.

Mount Kilimanjaro downhill course

Jen and Stuart are currently in the early stages of their adventure up to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro.  This is no ordinary trip though.  They will taking bicycles up with them (well the porters will be taking them).  They will then descend on two wheels back to base camp.  Jenn is bringing an Alchemist softshell jacket with her to sport on the summit.  We are rooting for you!

Check out some of the vid here:

Lunar Eclipse photos and Why I Hate Boulder

21 12 2010

lunar ecplise photo sequence

Evolution of last night's lunar eclipse

Missed out on the lunar eclipse last night?  I pried my eyes open with toothpicks and drank Red bull until after midnight to get some pictures of the lunar eclipse.  Woke up Sue and Syd, and dragged them onto the front porch to watch.  Then I proceeded to snap the lamest, crappiest, blurriest photos ever.  Fortunately, despite having to come to work at 7am this morning, Drew researched the best camera settings for shooting an eclipse, then hiked up Mount Sanitas to watch the eclipse and take the series of photos above.  Thanks, Drew.  Strong work!

Had a guy decide that he wanted to race me up Flagstaff today.  I wasn’t planning on racing, but it’s hard to just let a guy go by in flat pedals, tennis shoes and a circa 1990 Rockhopper.  He kept looking back to see if I was still there.  I was, barely.  We turned the last S-turn and sprinted for the top.  He started grunting and making funny squeaky noises.   I thought he was done, but he kept on sprinting.  Beat me by a wheel.  You think getting beat by a squeaky guy riding flat pedals and a 20 year old steel bike is bad?  How about getting toasted by a girl riding a beater with panniers and wearing a skirt.  As she cruised by, she smiled and quipped, “Hey, nice socks.”

Yeah, I know.  I hate Boulder.

Tis the Season for Winning and More Cowbell in the Denver Post

30 11 2010

Tis the Season

Last year we got beat out by Med/Surg.  The year before by Pharmacy.  We’ve been the bridesmaid two years in a row.   After winning the top podium spot 3 years ago, we haven’t been able to recapture the magic that brought home the gold since then.

The hospital food drive is a cutthroat exercise in gamesmanship and cunning strategy.  We won’t be beat this year.  The docs all pooled our collective stingy-ass cash contributions.  Plans for a last minute shopping spree by Melissa and Kandy at Save-A-Lot should seal the deal for the ER this year.  We hope.  It’s no longer the season of caring, or of giving.  Tis the season of winning.  Told Rachel in Pharmacy it’s on like Donkey Kong, so bring it on!

Check out the Denver PostMore Cowbell made the gift guide in the fitness section.  Big thanks to Kristen at the Post for including us.

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