A recent column of mine told how life in the emergency department is like a mission trip to the land of Emergistan. Here it is.
It seemed to strike a cord with many of my readers, and it made sense to follow the encouragment of my readers and develop some material with the Flag of Emergistan as the logo.
So it’s here! We’re starting slow at republicofemergistan.com, with shirts, sweatshirts and some buttons. But if you like it, it will grow into other logos and other products.
So let me explain the logo a bit: A vulture, grasping a stethoscope and syringe, representing our diagnostic skills balanced with our ability to treat and intervene. The more cynical may take a different view; as in, why would a vulture need a stethoscope or syringe? Maybe he took them from a deceased nurse or physician? Maybe it represents futility, or the yin and yang of treatment and diagnosis in the face of mortality, the great vulture that sits over all of us. (Now that’s why I write. I’m capable of spontaneous drivel, with little meaning, that makes just a little sense…)
A middle path might be this: we are vultures in a sense, as our work is predicated on the suffering of others. Not in a cruel way, but in a necessary way. And we do what we can to figure it all out and treat it.
The vulture sits on a field of red for blood, blue for hypoxia and green for purulent drainage…pus in the vernacular.
Underneath are the words: Semper A Decem. Loosely translated it means ‘Always a Ten’ in Latin. That is, the pain scale is ‘always a ten.’
This button might actually fly under the radar of administration if you make up a good story! ”The red green and blue are for diversity and the bird is an eagle representing the freedom to get health care! Semper a Decem? Uh, it means, it’s always December in the ER! That is, always like Christmas, yeah, that’s it!’
I’m not telling you to lie. I’m just saying what some people might say in that situation…
So there it is. The symbol of our world, our life, our calling and our country; the bizarre land of Emergistan.
Here’s a link to the republicofemergistan store. (I also have some Level I Drama Center buttons and clothing!)
I pledge allegiance to the flag
Of the Republic of Emergistan,
And to the chaos and hope for which it stands.
And to the suckers who work there, around the clock,
facing suffering, stupidity and never-ending need
with science, compassion, and cynicism.
Doing the impossible in the worst of situations.
With pain scales, work excuses and ridiculous regulations