Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Proper Response to the Idiots

Fear The MRI

Walt sends this horror story:
A 6-year-old boy died after undergoing an MRI exam at a New York-area hospital when the machine's powerful magnetic field jerked a metal oxygen tank across the room, crushing the child's head.

The force of the device's 10-ton magnet is about 30,000 times as powerful as Earth's magnetic field, and 200 times stronger than a common refrigerator magnet.

Forrest Fenn Kills Again

Last year, my sister, nephew, and I had a great time searching for the treasure. You just have to know how to avoid going to extremes:
BILLINGS, Mont. - A 53-year-old Illinois man who fell to his death in Yellowstone National Park last year was looking for a supposed hidden cache of gold and jewels.

KULR-TV reports that Jeff Murphy of Batavia, Illinois, was looking for the treasurer that antiquities dealer Forrest Fenn says he stashed somewhere in the Rocky Mountains several years ago.

Monday, February 19, 2018

"Bye, Bye Life" - "All That Jazz"

My favorite movie musical sequence ever, and more pertinent than ever!

Serious as a Heart Attack

Monday in Albuquerque

I had a cold, starting about 2 weeks ago. The fever went away, then I went to New Mexico to give my annual talk to the Southwest Popular/American Cultural Association meeting. I continued to slowly-heal from the cold.

On Monday, the last day of my Albuquerque trip, I got a burning sensation on both sides of the sternum in the center of the chest. It wasn't much of a burning sensation. At first, I figured it was some new, opportunistic lung infection.

I paid a lunchtime visit to former-Sacramentan Bruce Warren. Bruce was once a reporter at the Auburn Journal. He fed me a turkey burger. Afterwards, I was having a bit of breathing issues, and feeling tired. Lugging suitcases around the Albuquerque Sunport, and reshooting "Breaking Bad" filming locations there, was hard. Like, really hard. Maybe getting back to sea level in Sacramento might be good.


Striving For a Normal Tuesday

Quiet morning and afternoon. Prepping blog updates featuring new photos from the trip. The mild burning sensation was still there in the chest, unchanged, and not moving around, which was curious for what I still assumed was a lung infection. Kind of dreading coming back to speed on "Carousel" rehearsals in Davis, given how long I had been gone. Regular Zumba class was at 6:30 p.m., but I'd have to leave early, in order to get to rehearsal in Davis at 7:30 p.m. (for which a late arrival was not a good idea).

Still, Zumba was hard. Like, really hard! I stayed only half-an-hour.

Rehearsal in Davis was less-demanding physically than Zumba, but weariness made rehearsal hard.


Valentine's Day

Wednesday morning, the mild burning sensation was unchanged in the center of the chest, but now I was a bit lightheaded too.

I talked to Carolyn Gregory. She called to welcome me back to Sacramento and wish me a Happy Valentine's Day. When I mentioned my symptoms she freaked out. Her husband also had had similar symptoms, and was reluctant to seek medical care. Carolyn's son arranged to rendezvous with Carolyn's husband at the hospital ER in Roseville. Her son made the rendezvous. Carolyn's husband never did. "Call an ambulance!!!" Carolyn urged. "Go now!!!" A bit too shrill for me, but I was beginning to get worried myself. Could it be I was having a cardiac event? Whatever was going on wasn't normal.

I called my doctor's office for an appointment. My regular doctor, Dr. Norene, wasn't available, but his colleague, Dr. Whitman was.

I drove myself in early. If I was having a coronary, it'd be better to have it at the doctor's office rather than at home. Doctors' appointment was for 2:40 p.m., but didn't get in until about 3:20 p.m.

Dr. Whitman listened to my story and decided to take an EKG. The EKG wasn't normal. She suspected atrial fibrillation. So, they ordered me to go to Sutter Medical Center.

I arrived at the Sutter Parking Garage B at 4:09 p.m., getting to the emergency room about 4:30 p.m.

They moved surprisingly-fast, taking chest X-Rays and blood samples. If I did have a heart attack, it would reveal itself. It's funny, I didn't feel terribly stressed. I'm supposed to be in the next DMTC show, but may have to drop out if anything bears fruit.

There's a lot of sick people here! Face masks galore. I recognized one woman from when I was here in December for the auto accident. She's on staff. Indicates I'm coming here too often.

They put me through some regimen. Nitroglycerin patch on chest. Blood thinner shot in belly. Two baby aspirin. Chest tightness started receding. Now I just felt like I had a cold.

One ER doctor who passed through said "massive" heart attack (based on elevated triponin levels). Not good. They're unhappy I waited so long to come down. My ER doctor, Dr. Gordon, said "You realize you're not going home tonight."

Well, here I was at Hotel California, aka Sutter Medical Center, Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU). Apparently I had a heart attack, probably on Monday, on my last day in Albuquerque. I would spend the night, as they do whatever it is they do here. You can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave.

I was moved from the ER to Cardiac ICU. 4th floor, new tower on Thursday at 5:30 a.m. A Heparin drip was started.


Thursday, February 15th

I'm impressed with people's skill sets. Good people!

The latest doc in here, cardiologist Dr. Xu, didn't like the term "massive" heart attack used by ER doc last night. Not a medical term. Maybe not so massive.

Been drifting into sleep. Heparin drips. Erlynda and Chris came by. Waiting for an angiogram later.

I had an angiogram Thursday evening. Results were good, but with enough mystery to confuse. My arteries were clear, so no balloon treatment was necessary, nor stents, nor bypass surgeries. Still, blood flow is unusually low, and the arteries sludgy, which puts me at risk of clots and strokes. To Dr. Huang, I appeared to have the heart of an ex-smoker. Funny, that. I've never smoked (except possibly childhood second hand smoke). It's possible the heart attack was caused by a myocardial infection - maybe a virus from my recent cold (or flu). So, mysteries, but the news tonight is basically upbeat.

They saw signs of arteriosclerosis. Not enough for a blockage, but enough. Apparently the catheter didn't have a camera. They released radioactive dye and imaged it on a screen. They kept shifting the screen around during the procedure. I tried looking at the screen while they worked but my position was awkward. They were concerned my blood pressure was way too low - in the 70's - so they took me off the nitroglycerin patch. Interestingly, my cough, which had been gone while I had the patch, slowly returned.


Friday Morning Sunrise

I was having sleep apnea issues last night. They eventually responded with oxygen.

Nurse Rose took me on a short walk down the hall and back. I have to be careful. Jacked on so much heparin that a trip and stumble could be fatal. No daredevil stuff today! Whoa! Unexpectedly demanding work, this walking! Getting back to Zumba will take awhile!

I talked to Dr. Ikeda, one of the cardiologists. He's concerned that triponin levels keep rising (enzymes released into blood stream when heart damage has occurred). Ikeda suspects a blood clot occurred when a cholesterol plaque burst. I might have had a stroke, but instead had a heart attack. He recommends getting religion on cholesterol.


Here's my bed in the ICU.


Status Board.


Nurse Rose (on the right). Great assistance, attitude, attention!


Computer monitor.


The DMTC Group Comes For a Visit!

Dannette Vassar, Marc Valdez, Jan Isaacson, Steve Isaacson (photo by Nurse Rose).


Move From Intensive Care

Goodbye Room 4612; Hello Room 4316.





Fourth Floor Bridge Over L Street.


Nurse Benjamin and my new bed.


My Little World























Sunday Morning Amble (including novel view of Sutter’s Fort)

Triponin levels apparently peaked, so that's good. 0.06 is normal, first measurement was 26.2, peak was 57.1. New blood sample will be taken in 2 hours. My arms are pincushions. Official diagnosis is Non-ST (NSTEMI) mycocardial infarction.

They tried to get more blood from me at one point, but I sent the phlebotomist back since I had just given blood. Four visitors, including Erlynda. Learned that someone else in the Zumba class, had a very similar infection, and she's had heart surgery and repeated hospitalizations since December. I didn't know she had these problems. It's also a possible vector. I've done high-five's with her. (Sounding paranoid, but who gets heart attacks like these?)

Start.


Sunday morning amble





Sutter's Fort.


A patient on the sidewalk below with his IV rack gazes at the hospital's statue of John Sutter.











Finish.


The Ewey Clan Came For a Visit!




Well, my cardiologist Dr. Xu signed off on my release, but he’s only the most-important in a hierarchy of doctors and nurses who need to sign off before I can be released. The others will come soon. Since I won’t get out before tomorrow I might well get my heart-wall MRI tomorrow rather than Tuesday.





MRI Test

A sleepless night, per usual hospital custom. Headache. The plan is to be released today, but whether or not I have an MRI first depends on whether a trained technician is available on Presidents Day. I’m worried my body is setting up for opportunistic infections - diarrhea and gum inflammation due to no available dental floss - and it’s now probably better to leave this environment and go home.

I got rid of the immediate gun inflammation by using an old tea bag for floss. This oversight is kind of disturbing. Sutter always badgers me with survey requests, and this oversight needs to be noted.

Holy crap! Just got out of the MRI machine! Endurance run! Started laughing though, when it sounded like the high-tech machine was farting. Spelunking experience back in the day came in handy in this tight space. It's hard to hold your breath for controlled, extended times after a heart attack. Requires focus.





My helpful MRI operator. "Take a deep breath. Now breathe all the way out, and hold!"


The MRI. Strange experience! I loved its tribal thrumming. Reminded me of the soundscape underground with the Morlochs in "The Time Machine" (1960). MRI report will be available this afternoon. MRI won't change treatment plan, but it may reveal weaknesses that need to be monitored going forward.

Continual shifting of goalposts regarding release. At first it was getting a drop in triponin levels, then getting a MRI, then getting MRI results report. Dr. Singh was nowhere to be found, but Dr. Orozco appeared when I started complaining.

According to Dr. Orozco, MRI shows damage consistent with a heart attack. No details available yet.

From the nurses.


Fortunately the nurse wheeled me to the truck: otherwise, it might have too taxing to do pharmacy errands. Fortunately the parking garage clerk waived the $50 fee despite the fact I didn't have a doctor's letter (a need none of the nurses mentioned who looked into parking for me). The clerk saw my discharge papers and wasn't inclined to charge me. Thank you! Met Erlynda at Rite Aid. Fortunately the medications didn't cost much, and fortunately I didn't have too far to drive.

Final wheelchair roll out of the hospital, Monday evening, Feb. 19th, about 5 p.m. Mary Young arrived for a visit just as I was leaving. At home now, where I will hole up for awhile.


From the pedestrian skyway crossing 29th Street at L Street, two turkeys can be seen crossing 29th Street just outside the pedestrian crossing. Just weird.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

"Better Call Saul" Filming Locations - Season 4

This post is the fifth of six posts regarding "Better Call Saul" filming locations (last updated February 20, 2018).

This post focuses on Season 4 locations.

The Blog Sidebar contains links to Filming Location posts.  These include:
  • Eight "Breaking Bad" filming location posts;
  • Three additional posts regarding "Breaking Bad" related subjects;
  • Six "Better Call Saul" filming location posts;
  • One additional post regarding "Better Call Saul" related subjects;
  • An outline of Architecture, Set, and Prop Associations in both “Breaking Bad” and “Better Call Saul”;
  • Two links to OldeSaultie's Google maps of "Breaking Bad" and "Better Call Saul" filming location sites. These are the best filming location maps on the Web! The KML files available at these addresses are particularly useful for importing locations into GPS-equipped devices.

Let me know if you have any problems or questions (E-Mail address: valdezmarc56@gmail.com).

--------------------------
"A Guidebook To 'Breaking Bad' Filming Locations: Albuquerque as Physical Setting and Indispensable Character"

To avoid unnecessary friction, I have redacted the addresses of all single-family homes in the book. (These addresses are still available in these blog posts, however.)

The pictures in the print edition are black-and-white, in order to keep costs down. Pictures in the Kindle edition are in color.


The Fourth Edition (Publication date June 28, 2017; 382 pages) of the book can be ordered at these links:

Print, Kindle U.S., Kindle UK, Kindle DE, Kindle FR, etc.


----------------------------------

New Season 4 Filming Locations



Northeast Heights (E. of Wyoming, W. of Juan Tabo, S. of Osuna)

(no new locations offered with this update)


Upper Northeast Heights (E. of Juan Tabo, S. of Osuna)

(no new locations offered with this update)


Northeast Heights (N. Of Osuna)

(no new locations offered with this update)


Lower Northeast Heights (W. of Wyoming), & Lomas Blvd. Corridor


925 McDuffie Circle NE.


Downtown

(no new locations offered with this update)


Downtown West and Old Town

(no new locations offered with this update)


Huning Castle & ABQ Country Club

(no new locations offered with this update)


Barelas

(no new locations offered with this update)


Huning Highlands/ Martineztown Locations

(no new locations offered with this update)


University Area & Near Presbyterian Hospital

(no new locations offered with this update)


Nob Hill

(no new locations offered with this update)


South Valley (West of River), Southwest Albuquerque and Pajarito Mesa

(no new locations offered with this update)


San Jose Neighborhood and South Valley (East of River)

(no new locations offered with this update)


Southeast Heights

(no new locations offered with this update)


Near "Q" Studios

(no new locations offered with this update)


"Q" Studios

(no new locations offered with this update)


I-25 Corridor, North


Former DaVita Medical Group - Family Medicine, 3901 Carlisle Blvd NE.


North Valley

(no new locations offered with this update)


Northwest Albuquerque

(no new locations offered with this update)


Corrales

(no new locations offered with this update)


West Mesa (except Pajarito Mesa)

(no new locations offered with this update)


Sandia And Manzano Mountains

(no new locations offered with this update)


To'hajiilee

(no new locations offered in this update)


Zia Pueblo, San Ysidro, and Cabezon

(no new locations offered in this update)


Bernalillo and Placitas

(no new locations offered in this update)


Santa Fe & Lamy

(no new locations offered with this update)


Near Los Lunas and Belen

(no new locations offered with this update)


More Distant Locations

(no new locations offered with this update)


----------------------------------


Thursday, February 15, 2018

Hotel California

Well, here I am at Hotel California, aka Sutter Medical Center. Apparently I had a heart attack on Monday, my lasti day in Albuquerque. Stuck at Sutter, probably for several days. You can check out anytime you’d like, but you can never leave.