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~Friday~ I worked from Bruegger's Bagels at Mission Valley this morning until leaving at about 10:30 for my 11:00 doctor's appointment out at RTP.

While I was waiting in the line, I looked around to see if my award was framed and hanging anywhere, but I didn't see it. When it came time to pay, the manager whom I presented the award to was in the area of the cashier, as was another manager on duty.

"How's my favorite morning crew?" I asked, and his face lit up with recognition.

"We're doing great! Everybody loves that award. I've got it hanging in my office," he beamed.

I handed the cashier my $2 off coupon that I'd received for filling out the online survey about their service as suggested by the manager when I gave them the award.

He said to the other manager ( a lady) standing beside him, "This is John. He's the one that gave us the award."

She smiled broadly and extended her hand saying, "It's nice to meet you. And thank you so much for what you did."

The cashier asked the manager, indicating my coupon, "How do I ring this up?"

To which he replied, "Let him save that for next time. This morning's breakfast is on me."

That made my Asiago Parmesan bagel even better.



I took a seat, got out my Mac, and started going through my work email when two girls took a table behind me and a little to the left. I can't even begin to describe how tragic these two were, particularly one of them. The words "fuck" and "like" took turns tripping out of her mostly mumbling mouth.

Typical sentences in her part of the conversation included: "All I had to do was, like, walk the fucking dog," "And I was like, you guys, can you open the fucking door?" and "If I at least, like, had the bitches downloaded on my computer, I wouldn't have been, like, so mad. They were like awesome fucking pictures."

At one point, Cesspool Mouth walked past me to get something for her coffee, and on the way back she came to a complete stop standing in my line of view of the ordering area, for no reason that I could think of other than wanting me to look at her. But what I wanted to say was, "Would you hurry by so I can see that paramedic over there?"

Finally giving up, she passed by me and said to a guy sitting at another nearby table, "Excuse me? Do you know where I can get a Bloody Mary at this hour? Is there a place with a bar nearby?" Klassy.

Back at her seat, she driveled on about having lost her camera the previous evening, debating on whether to call the guy she was with, when she finally said, "I don't care, I'm going to leave him a fucking voice mail," and she borrowed her friend's phone to make the call.

"Hi this is Anna from last night. I'm sorry to be calling you, but I, like, lost my camera. And, like, the last time I remember seeing it was when I was with you last night. And I was, like, wondering if was, like, in the back of your truck or something." I'm going to go out on a limb here, and assume that that would be a pick-up truck. Not that there's anything wrong with pick-up trucks.

In hanging up, she indicated that she was "like" calling from her friend's phone, but that it was okay to "like" call her back and she'd get the message.

Then she said to her friend, "He'll probably think I'm, like, a fucking idiot. But I don't fucking care. That's a nice fucking camera."

After a few minutes the other girl called a cab. Thank god.

Into the phone she said, "We're, like, (another "like" user) over by Western Boulevard and Ivent Ferry Road." (She said Ivent Ferry, even though it's Avent Ferry.) And then she added, "Well, actually, we're like, near where the Bruegger's is." I was thinking, "Well, actually, you're exactly where the Bruegger's is. You could go so far as to say you're in the Bruegger's."

After she hung-up Cesspool Mouth said, "Aren't we going to the mall?"

To which she replied, "Well, I thought we'd go to where my car is first. And then we could drive to the mall. That would be cheaper."

To which Cesspool Mouth responded, "Oh yeah, definitely. Yeah I totally understand that. Look if you're, like, getting tired of me, I totally understand. I mean I'm cracked out, too."

I'll say.

I have never been so glad to have someone sitting around me leave. As expected, they couldn't be bothered to bus their table. They left their refuse strewn across the table for some other—presumably non-cracked up—person to clean up. Did I mention Klassy?



I arrived at my doctor's office at about two minutes after 11:00, but with the number of people in the waiting room, I didn't think that was going to be an issue at all. And it wasn't.

I was reading some of the final pages of The Hunger Games, when Shameika called me back.

When she saw the book in my hand, she said, "Oh! That book is so good! You just starting it?"

"Nope, in fact, I'm on the final pages," I replied.

"Well, you definitely have to read the other two books," she said. She's the first person I've heard say that. The general sentiment I've heard so far (albeit only from a couple of people) is that the second two books are just "meh."

She asked me why I was there, and here is the Cliff Notes version of what I told her, and later repeated to the doc:

  • Thursday, August 4th, started Clindamycin for a possible tooth abscess, 2 pills

  • Friday, August 5th, took my first full day dose, 4 pills

  • Friday evening or Saturday morning, started having diarrhea

  • Monday, August 8th, called the dentist back to tell him what was going on, and he told me to stop the Clindamycin

  • Basically, have had diarrhea ever since then, which is 14 days now

I had to wait about ten minutes for the doctor to come in, and while I waited, I finished The Hunger Games. I'm just going to say that, although I knew this was the first book in a trilogy, I really expected there to be a little more closure than there was at the end of this one, and about that, I'm not very happy.



The doc asked me a lot more detailed questions that were way beyond the TMI that's already going to be included in this entry, so just suffice it to say that when it was all said and done, he said he thought I had Clostridium Difficile, or "C-Diff" as he referred to it as.

He told me that he was going to need two samples to send off to the lab, which if he sent off today would be back on Monday. He asked me if I'd ever given this kind of sample before, and I said, "No, just urine samples."

He told me that I was going to get two containers, one of which had a little "spork" type instrument with it that I could just use to scoop out what I need and put it in the sample containers.

"Just scoop it out of the toilet water?" I asked incredulously.

"Yes," he said.

Beyond thinking how gross that whole idea was, I thought, "Won't that water down my (already 'watered-down') sample?" Oh well, what do I know about it?

Before leaving, he said, "You don't have to do this, but until we get you on an antibiotic to treat the C-Diff, once we know that's what it is, you may want to have a liquidy, brothy kind of diet over the weekend. Lots of juices would be good, some beef broth, or even some soups, but with very little of anything in them beyond maybe just a little pasta, would be good. And beer. That's liquidy, too."

"How about bourbon?" I asked a little too quickly.

"In moderation," he said. "Everything in moderation." Indeed.

Also, the irony of, eventually, most likely prescribing an antibiotic to treat the side effects of an antibiotic was not lost on either of us.



When I got to the lab, the tech working there handed me three containers.

About the first she said, "This is a container to catch your sample in," about which I was still thinking, "But I thought he said I scooped it out of the toilet," as she continued, "You'll want to wash this before and after, though, because it's not sterile."

Speciman catcher container

Then I thought, "Okay, I'm definitely going to wash that thing before I make a deposit into it, but afterward? Really? Why? Does she think I'm going to have some of that soup the doc suggested in it? That container's going directly into the garbage as soon as I'm done defiling it."

Next, she showed me the two specimen containers:

Specimen submission containers

The one on the right is the one that has the little "spork" attached to the lid sticking down into that solution, and about which, indicating that red line with the arrow pointing to it with the words "Add specimen..." she said, "Put enough specimen in to take it to that red line, but don't go over the line."

About the container on the left, she said, "Put a sample up to that little black line at the bottom. That's all we need. And have them both back here by 2:00 if you want them to go out today."

I told her that since I lived twenty minutes away, I was just going to go ahead and provide the samples while I was there, instead of driving all the way to Raleigh and back.

To which she said, "Hmmm. I don't have a spoon to give you for the one without a spoon."

"I can't just use the spork?" I asked.

"Oh no," she said, "That spork is down in that solution, and you can't have that solution in this other sample."

She thought for a few more minutes—not very hard I might add—and finally said, "I'm sorry. I just don't have anything you can use for a spoon around here."

You know that irritated me to no end. There had to be something in that damn place that I could have used as a pooper scooper.



Not wanting to cause a scene (Can you believe it?), I left there and thought, I am not driving 15 or so miles home and back to do this. So I devised a plan, telling myself, "I need two things: a spoon and a roomy bathroom stall with a decent amount of privacy."

I decided I'd get a spoon at a nearby fast food place, and then I'd zip over to the Sheraton Imperial and use one of their bathrooms to do the deed.

I decided on a nearby Burger King, where after enjoying my chicken sandwich and fries, I settled upon my weapon of choice: Nope, not a spoon. Not even a spork. But...

Burger King spoon substitutes

I stuck four of those little suckers in my pocket and set off to the Sheraton Imperial, where they were still setting up for some kind of Taekwondo tournament that is evidently going on this weekend. I went to one of their—rather luxurious—bathrooms away from the main lobby, where I was pretty sure there would be little-to-no traffic at 1:00 in the afternoon.

I chose the handicapped stall, so I'd have plenty of room. The last thing I wanted to do was knock anything over in a tiny stall just trying to turn around or something.

As Murphy's law would have it, about halfway through—post spork, but pre-ketchup cup, to be exact—the cleaning person decided this would be a good time to clean the bathroom. I thought, "No! No! No!" but only coughed to let him know that someone was in there, and mercifully, he went away.

I finished everything up, grabbed my jacket that was hanging behind the stall door, which I'd brought in solely to use its pockets to hide everything, and as I turned around it swung and knocked my two—now full—sample jars off the toilet paper holder where I'd set them, and they went flying under the stall door and rolled out into the bathroom. Horrified, I scrambled to get them before anyone came in. Fortunately both lids were on tight, and neither of them cracked open.

I pushed my used "soup bowl" (with the lid on it, of course) way down into the trash can under all the used paper towels that were in it, washed the hell out of my hands, and headed back to the doctor's office to submit my samples before 2:00.



On the way home, I stopped by K-mart, where I bought some Pepto Bismol, as the doc said that that's a good thing to use while we wait for the results. I also bought some French Onion Soup, some Chicken Noodle Soup, and some Apple Juice.

If murder were legal, the cashier that checked me out would be dead, albeit not from my order, but for ringing up the order of the guy in front of me. For every single item of his, she scanned it, looked at the cash register to make sure it said what the item really was and that the price matched what was on the item, and the reconfirmed looking back at the item again. OMFG. And at one point, she had to stop and put her glasses on to see better. OMFG.



For dinner, I feasted on Pepto Bismol, French onion soup, apple sauce, and apple juice. Woohoo.

I took a two-hour nap, from about 5:30-7:30, and stayed in for the evening.

Since I'd finished The Hunger Games, I picked back up in Outliers, which I was reading before The Hunger Games became available at the library.

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