Tuesday, 4 November 2014

NHS (No Hope Surely)

    I've been behind with everything lately, including this blog. You know the feeling! A combination of things, I fear. Old age creeping on, as the bishop said to the actress. (Only I'm not sure if it was a bishop or someone else. Which really proves the point regarding failing sensibilities!) Or is it the pain caused by  trying to meet all the things life throws at us, retired people included. I hear much talk concerning pressure. the word stress is frequently mentioned today. Is life really more pressurised today I wonder; it certainly feels it! 
    The older I get, the less I know.  The world, certainly my world gathers momentum. It is taking off and there's not much I can do about it. Apart from running for the hills I've got to stay and cope as best I can. I strongly suspect much, not all, but a fair amount nevertheless of our problems stem from modern technology. Very clever, at times life changing but all too often a pain in the backside. May I explain the reasons for my negativity.    
    Now I don't own a mobile phone plus the blackberry?  in my car has never been connected. I can turn our 'smartarse' television on and off but have mastered nothing else on the thing. Just three examples of my life in the year 2014. Everyone else copes, understands this technological age and leaves this old codger out on a limb, so to speak. You must be joking. Examples from that most revered of institutions, the NHS give food for thought.
    One, my wife has serious health problems but copes with cheerful determination. She sat one day in the local, up to date, state of the art hospital. The examination was going well until the consultant mentioned her brother's recent operation; a non existing operation! My wife was quickly despatched to another room, another consultant. The second consultants remarks that my wife got two for the price of one was witty but in a way quite disturbing.
   Two, the hospital prescribing, thus duplicating the same drugs that I was already taking was potentially dangerous but it was some time ago. Plus the politicians assure us daily that things could not be better in October 2014.
    And three, I should have been in Birmingham last week, booking made to see another consultant, at a hospital unknown to me concerning neurology. Only it was nothing to do with me. Right insurance number, right name on the letter except that it was nothing to do with me, wrong person altogether. Took some sorting out, not for the first time. Quite scary really, almost certainly human error concerning computers and human operatives. How many times is your life interfered with because of computers, or is it just me? (Lest anyone think I don't rate the NHS, not true. If you are in any doubt as to that most noble of institutions, watch 24 Four Hours in A and E on the television at the moment. Amazing and very humbling.)
 Since I last posted time moves on, unstoppable. This week in the news is the Virgin rocket crashing. Cause unknown but you wonder if computer errors are at any stage involved. 
    It is my birthday this Sunday, God willing. Seventy five years young! I see the changes and I have seen. The end of the Second World War and the formation of The EU for good or bad. Colour television, half electric cars. Births, marriages and deaths, notably the death of President Kennedy. (I will do the passing years justice in a future post sometime. In the meantime, anyone like to tell us the most memorable five things from their lifetime.)
'Stop the world, I want to get off' sang Anthony Newley. I feel the same sometimes! But life goes on and I don't suppose computers will go away, they're here to stay. You imagine someone born on Sunday. I wonder what they will experience in the next seventy five years? 
  

16 comments:

Helen Devries said...

Happy birthday for Sunday, and many more of them.
Take heart on the subject of mix ups...we had a bailiff serve us with a summons - and a CD which was supposed to explain it all.
The CD was blank so I had to go to the court to ask what it was all about.
They gave me another CD which, when printed up, proved not to concern us at all....back tot he court.
Oh, said the woman behind the counter, there's been a muddle. The name of one of the parties included words which were part of our address....
You cannot make it up!

Bernard said...

You are not by any means alone with being bamboozled by new technology.
Years ago most things like radios and TVs had switches with ON/OFF, volume, wave band, contrast and brightness. This we could understand. (and it was usually written in English!)
Nowadays electronic devices are capable of requiring hundreds of optional settings, controls, adjustments and preferences. This is why you need an eighty page users handbook!
Now then - five memorable things.
1) Meeting Dame Elizabeth Cadbury at Bournville junior school.
2) Passing my 11 plus and getting kitted out at the Co-op.
3) Seeing my mother cry when I went on stage to receive my BSc with hons.
4) My first night on my honeymoon.
5) Living long enough to see Douglas Carswell elected as our first UKIP member of parliament. Take care Ken and Happy Birthday.

CWMartin said...

Had to laugh at your title.... When I last got stitches to my finger, the clinic first tried to give me a chest x-ray, so I kinda know what you mean.

Pauline Woodcock said...

Happy Birthday. My 70th is coming up and I'm wondering where I can go to hide.
Thanks for the prompt to think about my five memorable moments.
1. The day when I was a five year old and my pony was put down because an uncle had left a gate open and a draught horse had mounted it and broken its back. I did not forgive that uncle for years and it was another of my memorable five that influnenced me.
2. Meeting Archbishop Duhig of Brisbane in 1960 when I had to accompany my mother as she met with him seeking permission to use a contraceptive (she already had given the church 10 children & felt that was enough as she wasn't a Catholic, that was my father). He refused permission which annoyed her but his gentleness and warmth really touched me and I resolved to be a better person (which involved forgiveness).
3. 1956, I was eleven and three fantastic Australian girls Betty Cuthbert, Shirley Strickland and Lorraine Crap fired my imagination with their performance at the Olympic Games. I think I was the perfect age to be impressed by determination and achievement.
4. President Kennedy's assassination. I see clearly the scene - my boyfriend of the time giving me the news, trying to convince me he was serious, my realisation that he was, the stunned feeling as the news sunk in. I can even remember the long gone boy's name.
5. The parachute jump to celebrate my 50th.
As for technology, it's been giving me so much grief lately it would be best not to get me going.

Pauline Woodcock said...

Perhaps I should have added I grew up in Australia.

Mike Ryan said...

Happy birthday for Sunday Ken. Some of the funniest stories of my life revolve around the time we worked together at Noel Baker - especially the boomerang throwing era, but that was ancient technology not new.

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Grumpy Old Ken said...

Helen
We laugh but its frightening at times.

Grumpy Old Ken said...

Bernard
Fascinating list. We get by, the likes of you and I. we are dinosaurs I suppose.

Grumpy Old Ken said...

CW
A bit drastic, but better to be safe!!

Grumpy Old Ken said...

Pauline
You should write down all you can remember before real old age robs you of your memories. good stuff.

Grumpy Old Ken said...

Mike Ryan
High! Give me a ring sometime if you get chance. (I see Richard James regularly.

Grumpy Old Ken said...

Anonymous
Oh dear. One unhappy chappie! Must be some good ones, surely?

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Star said...

Happy Birthday!