Tuesday, January 31, 2006

comments on comments

sara writes:
(regarding "Rebuilt") Cool! Did they talk about how much it all cost and how the patients paid for it all? Just curious. I don't get anything but the plain old ordinary Discovery channel.
Well, Sara....there was about a 30 second blurb stating that prosthetic care is costly (ya' think??!!). They went on to offer that the ladies in the (featured) office were very skilled at negotiating with (and showing need for equipment to) insurance companies.
They never offered a dollar amount, and they never mentioned co-payments.

Just for the record people, my 2nd definitive socket (and I'm on my 3rd) was NOT covered by insurance (long story), and it cost me $2,500. The socket is only the molded plastic part that fits on my thigh. The part the average person thinks of as my fake leg...the hardware components, the foot, the knee...well, mine is the computerized C-Leg. It was up in the $30k range. Just for the parts.
This explains why Steve Majors was The Six Million Dollar Man.
If you count my hospital bills, I'm pushing 2 million myself. And I've got a few more years left in me, which means I'll be needing a few replacements parts, too.

And the "how they pay for it all" part? I aint even going there......

I really, really want to know how to carry a full glass of champagne across a room without spilling it on crutches. Of course, I've rarely done it on two legs, organic or prosthetic, but the only way I know how to carry beverages across a room on crutches or using a walker is with a thermos or other covered container. They make Tupperware-like covers for cat food cans, even the tiny three-ounce ones. I've been wondering idly whether one of those would fit a champagne flute. Hasn't come up in my life, though, so I've never found out. What's your secret?
Uh -- I don't mean I've rarely carried champagne; I mean I've rarely carried it without spilling it, no matter how many legs I had. Born klutzy. Drinking champagne does not alleviate this condition.
I'm cracking up laughing over here. See, it didn't even occur to me to use a thermos. That would just be too logical hahaha. Very smart, though. I like it.
Actually I've done this champagne carrying trick with hot coffee, too. I didn't bring my no-spill mug to the party with the self serve coffee station.

Well I hope to do a little photo shoot soon, because I'd like to have sequential photos of several different crutch tricks. My sense of things is that crutch skills will help many folks, not just amputees. Lots of us end up on crutches for a small stint at some point in our lives.

Even though I think the photos will be much more helpful than just text, here's something to get you started, because if I know you, you are probably already trying to figure it out:

please note: Although that having crutches press into the armpits is considered to be a very bad thing, I personally dont find it to be a big issue for a few steps, especially when I squeeze my arm in towards my rib cage, holding the crutch firmly against my side, which prevents it from creating too much pressure in the pit.

That being said, I carry the glass in the same hand/side of my body that my amputated leg is on. I am missing my right leg, so I carry the glass in my right hand. I squeeze my right arm in firmly towards my right rib cage.

Now, if you actually stop here for a moment, you'll see that if you lean onto the hand grip of other crutch (for me, my left), the crutch that is only being held by your inner arm and ribcage can just kind of hang there, and it hangs pretty solidly. Move your upper body around a bit and see how it swings.

So here's my trick for going mobile: when I take a step forward, I brush the hanging crutch with the outside of my thigh/stump, using my amputated limb to swing the crutch through to a forward postion. It's kind of going forward anyhow, because the rest of my body is going forward, and the crutch is already just hanging from my armpit. My amputated leg just kind of nudges it along, and it also helps me to guide the landing of the hanging crutch so that it lands in a position that is in tri-pod relation to the other crutch and my sound leg.

As you swing your body through the crutches, this movement creates a momentary, but minimal, amount of pressure in the armpit, but the harder you squeeze your arm into your side, the less this is noticeable. And it's not like I'm a bartender and doing this all night. I don't believe I do this often enough to cause any kind of harm to the delicate pit. I do this maneuver so that I can schlep my own stuff across the room. I get pretty sick of always having an entourage trailing behind me with my food and drink like servants or something. And sometimes it's just little ol' me with no one around to help.

jodi writes:
I LOVE that colour combination. It'll be smashing in lace.
The photos don't do it justice. It's looking like a sunset or some kind of tropical cocktail. I'm really liking it. And my friend K with the garbage bags o'stash was generous enough to give me another big hank of each color in case I need it ;-) She rocks.
I'm not so sure how much Olympics viewing I'm going to get to do while knitting the lace panels, though...being my first time with lace, just the swatch comsumed my entire focus. Thank goodness for the big stockinette section.
I think your custom buttons look pretty awesome. Were the ones you showed us some of the less messed up ones? The sweater looks fantastic too.Sorry I didn't get a chance to experiment over the weekend to try to help figure that out, it's been a freaking hell few weeks here. I'm looking forward to sleeping more than five hours a night sometime soon. . . in a few weeks.
Yes, those were some of the less messed up ones....and I swear if I could get a better picture, you'd be able to see that they are oblong and not round. I would have used them...trust me, I'm not that anal...it's supposed to have a handmade look....but I just couldnt deal with them running in different directions. Sometimes they ran oblong horizontally, somtimes vertically. Looked stoopid. I love them anyhow though, just not for the baby sweater. I'm going to sew them onto the lapel of this little cropped black jacket I have :-)
Oh, and no worries that you didn't try to tackle my dilemma...but I still want to buy one of your shrinky dink bracelets (it'll boost your paypal account--hehe).

Diana writes:
I love all this knitting talk - I don't know anything about it, probably never will, and it impresses me to death to hear you rattle off these fancy terms.
I find this hilarious given you often impress me with your legal-eze. And by the way, what the heck is a "torte"?? In the culinary world, it's a cake, but I know you aren't in law school learning about desserts.

Since you find knitting speak so fancy, I reprint here, for your enjoyment, row 1 of the lace pattern I worked on last night:
*(p1, k2tog, yo, p1), ssk-L-pnso-R, k5, yo, k1, k3, yo, k1, yo, k2, sl 1-k2tog-psso. Repeat from * to last 4 sts, repeat 4st panel.

Maybe someday you'll knit me something...
Hahaha. Of course I will knit you something. Right after the Lysol Can Cozie my 90+ year old grandma just asked me to knit...in mauve. Sheesh.
Seriously though, I'd love to knit you something...you just have to promise to send me a photo of you modeling it, Ms.Photogenic!


Anonymous said...

Ok Bonnie, here's a mini law lesson: A tort is nothing like a torte! Tortes are tasty, and torts are sucky!

From Wikipedia - In the common law, a Tort is a civil wrong, other than a breach of contract, for which the law provides a remedy.

Oversimplified, you have the criminal law, and you have everything else. Most of everything else falls into the category Civil Law. Some stuff overlaps - like when OJ kills Nicole, he gets prosecuted criminally AND he gets sued civilly. And even though he gets off criminally (because of the higher standard of proof) he is found liable civilly. Liable always means you have to PAY!

Torts fall into 2 broad categories: intentional torts, and negligence. Intentional torts are like battery, assault, false imprisonment, conversion, etc. So doing some harm ON PURPOSE. Negligence, on the other hand, involves some harm for which you are responsible, but which was not done on purpose, or with intent. Stuff like products liability, and strict liability fall under the general negligence category. Likewise, personal injury is usually a negligence case.

Obviously this is really cursory, but it should give you a decent idea of what it's all about. As always, if you have specific questions, just ask!