Friday, December 14, 2018

Quickies: Hold The Outrage, Please

     Via the invaluable Knuckledraggin’ My Life Away comes a story that requires more than a cursory glance:

     The operation was serious and Anna felt relieved when her mother was moved from Intensive Care. But all that ended when the caring daughter found duct tape fixing her mom’s bandages. The ensuing scandal saw the head doctor sacked.

     Although Anna, from Blagoveshchensk in Russia's Far East, knew that her 63-year-old mother’s operation went well and that she was transferred from Intensive Care. But there was no way she could have predicted that a routine visit to her mom’s ward at the city’s clinical hospital would end in such drama.

     When Anna examined her mom, she was stunned to see that “the stitches were well-tended, but the bandages were attached to the body with duct tape instead of special medical adhesive plasters.”

     Where’s the scandal? Duct tape is versatile stuff! It adheres to surfaces that reject just about everything else, up to and including soldering and welding. Moreover, there is no evidence to suggest that it could infect a wound in human skin – assuming that it were used as the primary bandage, rather than as the anchor for a bandage as in the story above.

     The incident calls to mind a scene from one of John Campbell’s “Lost Fleet” books. Admiral “Black Jack” Geary, the hero-protagonist of the series, has just taken in flagship through a skirmish in which personnel were injured, equipment was damaged, and the hull of the ship suffered minor punctures. His damage control team patched all of these people and things with duct tape. It was what they had, and the nearest resupply point was most of a galaxy away. So they made do.

     But there were some aliens on board: diplomats Geary was ferrying to Alliance space, to make first contact with our civilization. The aliens noticed...and they immediately started negotiations with Geary to purchase the secrets of this “universal fixing substance.” I can’t remember exactly what Geary purchased from the aliens with duct tape, but it was rather valuable.

     Just another of the modern miracles we take too easily for granted, I suppose.

2 comments:

Linda Fox said...

Too many people make an association between those using duct tape (in their minds, manual laborers), and assume that it must be somehow dirty.

Science teachers use TONS of it (if you know one, make him/her a present of a six-pack or so of good duct tape - they will be THRILLED).

Butch DuCote said...

Reading this brought fond memories of a weekend canoe trip three decades ago. I had a retired surgeon slip while getting into a canoe resulting in a large gash in his cheek. We forgot the first aid kit so I patched him up with duct tape and toilet paper. A good laugh was had by all when he showed at work Monday still sporting his "red badge of courage".