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Queer As Me
Written on 2002-01-23, at 5:56 a.m.
dizboy's disturbing daily diet...

6 Small Bags Cadbury's Mini-Eggs

1 Cheese Whopper

1 Large Fries


John Live*

Looking about as bad as one can possibly look.

*Not at all live


I have just spent the better part of 10 hours sorting through medical histories, looking up cases online, and making up words so that I can write things as brief as this:

John Xxxxx

Dr. Marlene Spencer

Cases in Medical Ethics

CASE HISTORY:

On April 15th, 1975, Twenty-one year old Karen Quinlan was admitted to Newton Memorial Hospital in New Jersey after being found unconscious, and not breathing, by friends. Hospital workers deemed her status as a result of mixing the prescription drug Valium (diazepam), and alcohol. This caused anoxia, cutting off oxygen to her brain. Nine days later, Quinlan is transferred to St. Clare’s, where she can be attended by on-staff neurologists. When her initial respirator is found to be inadequate, her mother, Julia Quinlan, authorizes her to be put on a more powerful, MA-1 respirator under duress. The reason for this being that the new machine required a tracheotomy. Quinlan was determined to be in a coma, though the correct categorization would be a persistent vegetative state (PVS). Over time her condition worsened, and she was placed full time on nasogastric feeding tubes. After no noticeable improvement in her condition, Quinlan’s parents requested that she be removed from her life-support systems. When St. Clare’s refused, they requested that she be moved to a different facility which would allow it. St. Clare’s again refused, and the case was brought to trial. During the trial Quinlan was appointed Daniel Coburn as her guardian, who argued for her to remain on life-support. The case later went to the New Jersey Supreme Court, who ruled in favor of the Quinlans. Though the court had ruled, her doctors still insisted on attempting to wean her off the machines, were successful, and Karen was eventually transferred to a nursing facility where she remained for ten more years until her death due to complications from pneumonia.

DIAGNOSIS:

Persistent vegetative state due to anoxia of the brain.

PROGNOSIS:

Karen Quinlan, while not dead, had little chance of recovery, but could be kept alive indefinitely with the assistance of medical devices such as respirators and feeding tubes.

ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS:

1. Why was there no consistent record as to the drug contents of Quinlan the night she was admitted?

2. Was the family thoroughly briefed as to the ramifications of the MA-1 respirator?

3. Did Quinlan’s doctors have to attempt to wean her off life-support?

4. Were the Quinlans told, upon admission to St. Clare’s, that a respirator would not be disconnected once it was in use?

5. What were the other options doctors had besides attempting to wean her?

6. Why should physicians use “all possible measures” on a patient with a nearly zero chance of recovery?

7. Should an emotional plea such as “mercy” outweigh the decisions of a professional physician?

8. Why should the state use money to keep someone in irreversible PVS alive?

9. Should medicine have one, solidified, definition of “brain dead” for cases such as Quinlan?

10. How can someone who is already on the brink of death be harmed further by not receiving the “by all possible means” treatment?

11. Is it fair to patients when religious beliefs intervene with personal medical care?

12. Should Doctors be able to outweigh a patients families wishes on long-term care?

13. When is dead “too dead”?

Multiply that by six and you have my Ethical Case Studies assignment.

For. One. Week.

A short week, mind you, so six is apparently a light load.

I believe that my instructor is out to kill us, either that, or she wants to severely frighten the class in the first two weeks.

Either way, she's succeeding.

"Well, that's science class for you..."

Says my friend.

Which would be nice, were this a science class.

But nay, I say, I naysay...

It's a class for my philosophy minor.

An "elective", as the kids call it.

Yeah...six to eight a week...I'm going to die.


All thoughts of college aside, this weekend was wrought with fun. I went to Sarasota as part of Watermark's Public Relations team for the Showtime/Queer as Folk event at the Sarasota Film Festival. We arrived on Sunday at about 3PM, and the day could not have been more beautiful. After floundering around the main beach area for twenty minutes, we finally found the building where the party was taking place.

A good half a mile away from where MapQuest.com said is was, mind you.

We began setting up our marketing booth, and making up the answers to questions that tourists began asking us.

If I hadn't been there representing a company, I would have answered the couple that asked me "What is all this for?" for the 100th time like this...

"Oh, it's a VIP party with cast members of Showtime's 'Queer as Folk', a show that deals with homosexuality in a frank manner. You know, naked time and tongue kissing. Speaking of homosexuals, hey, I'm one...Want a gay newspaper?"

But I held my tongue, and simply replied..."It's a private party".

Once everything was set up, we had about an hour to kill, and were starving from the smells of the buffet being prepared, so Alan and I dicided to go get some food.

We took an elevator back down to the parking garage where his tiny little Focus was parked, and as we tried to leave, we quickly realized that we were locked in.

None of the gates would swing up, not even budging under my Herculean strength as I tried to lift them.

Accepting defeat for the time being, we decided to simply walk.

We found a Denny's on the beach, and across the street, a high rise "Charles Schwab" office building.

Which struck me as familiar.

"Alan..that's where Mary was...where people saw her..."

"Mary who?" he asked.

"Mary, you know...like Jesus Mary." I replied, bearing the depths of my theological wisdom.

I went on to explain to him that a few years back, people had seen a reflection of Mary on the office building.

But I don't think he believed me, because he said,

"I don't believe you."

"Why would she be on the Charles Schwab building?" he mused.

"Who knows?? Maybe trying to claim Jesus as a dependant for one more year? Point is, she was there..."

We went into Denny's, and were seated by a woman who first gargled at us before leading us to the table.

"How many?"

"Two."

"Smoking or non?"

"Non"

"Ok...*GARGLE*"

Perhaps it wasn't an actual gargle, but it was close enough in tonality to make me uncomfortable.

To make the situation livelier, Alan asks upon being seated...

"Hey, was Mary on that building over there?"

"Mary who?" she asks.

"Mary like, you know, big virgin Mary."

I'm not sure if he put it exactly like that, but I find the phrase "Big Virgin Mary" to be incredibly hilarious, though at the same time, sacreligeous.

Sacre-larious.

She gave us a look, and proceeded to never return to the table, prompting our vocal walk-out after nearly ten minutes.

We returned to the venue, which was an upscale bar and grille, and decided that alcohol could easily take the place of food anyday, and began drinking.

Not long after, people began arriving, and the buffet was opened...

It was wonderful, cheese, fruits, prime rib, stuffed mushrooms, chicken...etc, etc...

We ate, we smoked, we made fun of people, and soon thereafter they called everyone into the main area for the early screening of that nights episode.

Well, turns out that the only cast member to make it was Michelle Clunie, who plays Melanie on the show.

And my God is she a knockout...

Not that I'm into girls or anything like that, but if I was, I'd be all over her like taffida on a cheap wedding dress.

Hmm, see, that proves I'm gay.

They really, excuse the pedestrian..."Dyke Her Down", for the show, because she's about the most beautiful woman I've ever seen.

Anyway, before that random surge of testosterone reared it's ugly head, I was saying that they called us over to watch the episode that would be airing later that night, she talked about it for a little, admitted that she had a few cocktails, and was drunk, and started the show.

About 5 minutes into the episode, there was a scene where she and her wife are totally nude, and playing "hide-the-dildo".

I really couldn't look at her again all evening.

While the show was on however, someone had one of those obnoxious laser pointers, the kind that makes a circle pattern when it's on.

And they kept...shining it...on...the...screen.

It was really about the most annoying thing I've ever seen, so halfway through the episode, I turned around, and finally spotted the person who was doing it.

Making my way through the crowd, I approached him.

"Excuse me, some people are trying to watch the show here."

"Fuuuck you...get outta my faaaaace" he slurs drunkenly.

And starts shining it again.

"Sir, people have paid money to be at this event, and I think they would appreciate it if you wouldn't do that."

"Fuck...you...quit hassling me, asshole...who do you think you are?"

"I THINK I'm with the event, and unless you'd like to leave, you need to stop".

"Ohh, what are yoooooooooou gonna dooo?"

"I'm not going to do anything, but we have two uniformed deputies outside who, last time I checked, looked really bored."

"Fuck you, you asshoooooole..."

And with that, he shoves me, nearly knocking me over.

I went to grab someone out of the DJ booth, but by the time I turned back around, he and his friend were gone.

I returned to my viewing spot, only to find that Alan wasn't there.

Unknown to me, he had watched the whole thing, and as soon as the guy shoved me, Alan was right there following him out of the room, which I thought was a touching gesture.

The rest of the evening went fairly well, besides this one old queen who was obnoxious beyond all reason.

He had come up to Alan and I while we were sitting outside to tell us that his friend thought Alan was cute, and then turned to me to specifically say "Not you."

This really didn't bother me, except for the fact that as the night progressed, I saw him more and more, with incresing levels of alcohol in him, and he would always walk by me and yell...

"NOT YOU!"

Not that I was feeling particularly self-conscious about the whole thing, but I really, really wanted to see this guy dead, or at least badly hurt.

There are a few more stories from the evening, which I'll save for like...later...

Reason being that I'm very tired, and it's now 7am, I have to get ready for school.

Be well...

-JOHN-


Your Host and Emcee...dizboy.

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