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I’m Not Saying This Page Will Be All Tom Spurgeon Related Until 2020, But I’m Not Not Saying It

For your consideration: the Tom Spurgeon memorial pin from Ad House Books, available for a limited time for the astonishingly low price of three American dollars each, plus shipping. I got mine today.

The art was taken from Sam Henderson’s masthead representation of The Spurge at The Comics Reporter. Right now the page is down, but that link will hopefully work again in the future; until such time as the site is working again, you always use the Wayback Machine at the Internet Archive, which has The Comics Reporter archived.

While there you may note that the Internet Archive is in the midst of a funding drive, and that donations today are 2-for-1 matched, so if you’re inclined to give, today would be an excellent time to do so. I just gave ’em US$25 and I encourage you to do likewise in whatever amount you’re able.

Regardless, I hope you’re having a nice Boxing Day¹, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Feast of Stephen, or however you name this day.

Spam of the day:

High Demand for propertieS juSt like yourS review inquirieS

Odd capitalization aside, you’re overlooking one thing: if I sold you my property, that is to say the house I live in, I would have to move, and I would rather do almost anything than that. There are boxes still to be unpacked from when we moved in, May of 2004. No thank you, I will die in this house.

¹ I have EMT duty tonight, and I sincerely hope it goes better than the last time I had EMT duty on Boxing Day. It was 2010, and my crew lucked out in that our holiday duty for the year — Christmas Day — fell on the Saturday of our regularly-scheduled weekend duty. We didn’t have to ride a holiday plus our weekend, bonus!

Saturday (we didn’t go on until 7:00pm, so the crew had a nice time with their families, although my wife was visiting relatives out of state) went fine, but around noon on Sunday it started snowing at a pretty good clip. By 4:00pm we were called out for a motor vehicle collision and it was getting distinctly hazardous. I was supposed to go off duty at 7:00pm, but as it looked like a blizzard was setting up shop, I declared an emergency² and put out an alert for all available personnel to report to our building for the duration.

I got four experienced EMTs and three not-EMTs. We figured out bedding, got dinner squared away, and I took the ambulance to my house to get my dog, who was patiently waiting for a walk and supper. By this time there was 30cm of snow on the ground and I damn near got the ambulance stuck twice³. If you’re ever called upon to carry a slightly panicky, 30kg greyhound (plus blanket and food) through 30cm of snow, I recommend against it.

We bunked down, seven folks on improvised bedding in one lounge (one young lady reported my dog slept on her most of the night, resulting in a toasty-warm experience in a chilly building), waking to:

  • A deep sense of relief that no calls had come in overnight
  • A total of 66cm of snow on the ground
  • Our driveway and approach road clear (the town’s public works department had plowed us every three hours overnight)
  • Roads passable enough to procure foodstuffs to cook for the crew

By 10:00am, with everybody fed (and the dog in heaven from all the petting and attention), we settled back, hoping that things would remain quiet.

At 10:06am, the first call came in.

Normally, our small town averages 2 or 3 calls in any 24 hour period. We took 19 calls before the crew went off duty at 7:00am Tuesday, frequently to houses that had not shoveled out their driveway or walkway. We took everything from cardiac events to a dude that had a basil leaf stuck in his throat and, quote, It’s kind of scratchy. One crew would come back from a run and collapse, tones would drop, and the other crew would go out. We hopscotched the calls in this manner until daylight faded and returned again.

Tuesday morning I stumbled home, craving my first change of clothes and shower since Saturday morning, cleaned up, went to bed, and woke up in time to go back on duty for my regular Tuesday shift at 7:00pm. Wednesday morning I went home again and slept for 18 hours. Thursday, the state of New Jersey put out a call for spare ambulances and personnel to head up to Brooklyn to help work down their backlog and on behalf of the crew still in town I said Ha, ha, ha, NO.

So yeah, hoping it goes easier than that.

² I was, at the time, Captain, the third-ranking officer. Numbers 1, 2, and 4 were all out of town for the holidays, the bastards.

³ This was the weather event you may have heard of where New York City had a backlog 3000 pending medical calls as late as Thursday, with more than 100 ambulances stuck in the snow, dozens of which had patients onboard. My little town of 13 000 folks, with seven people running two ambulances, didn’t fail to respond to a single call. I am inordinately proud of what we accomplished.

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