Injury Code PB0967XD, Choking on a Spoonful of Peanut Butter, Subsequent Encounter

As I sit here and type this I have realized my son may have inherited the best of two worlds, it would appear that while he shares my own taste in music he has fortunately taken after my wife’s sense of rhythm.  Those of you who know me understand why this is important, namely because I couldn’t carry a beat even if it was handed to me in a large bucket with a spill proof lid.

I included the picture below to demonstrate that ad placement matters, so few people understand this concept, when you don’t then you wind up with something like what can be seen below.


Upon the day of my arrival I was again treated to the opportunity of seeing my son during a bowel movement.  One would think that eventually the humor behind this would dull, but my peals of laughter would seem to indicate otherwise; if anything it’s gotten even funnier.  It would appear that the law of diminishing returns does not apply to toilet humor, for a multitude of reasons, but primarily two; number one and number two.  I find it hilarious to see my wife running around the house carrying a child whose diaper is overflowing with a thick green paste roughly the same texture and color as military face paint.  After a certain point you realize that you don’t really have any option but to just throw him in the bath; there weren’t enough wet wipes in the world to cover Monday’s “incident.”  We still haven’t told L we used her green shower gloves as a containment barrier in the bath tub.

I’ve often been asked why I seem to avoid the political arena despite the wealth of humor it can provide, notwithstanding who is in office.  The answer is a relatively simple one; I firmly believe that everyone is entitled to their own opinion, regardless of how wrong yours may be.  But seriously, politics fascinate me because of the people.  It took me awhile to realize that some people are simply wired differently than I am, it’s not a matter of me being any smarter than they are; when they look at a problem they see it differently than I do.  This is interesting to me because it challenges the idea that common sense and “logic” are universal.  How is it that a perfectly reasonable and rational adult* can come to a completely different conclusion than I when presented with the same set of facts?  The only reasonable conclusion that I can come up with is that our minds work in completely different manners, i.e. we are wired differently, and that is fascinating to me.

*It is understood and acknowledged that there are vast quantities of people out there who partake in politics and are irrational and unreasonable, that encompasses those who share my beliefs and those whose beliefs are diametrically opposed to my own.  There are also numerous people who are simply ignorant or apathetic.  For the sake of discussion I will ignore all of these.

Now, having said all that I feel compelled to mention an interesting little tidbit I encountered earlier this year while perusing the list of new injury codes introduced by the ICD-10.  The ICD (International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems) is a medical classification system published by the WHO that allows doctors to provide a universal classification to an injury or illness.  This can be very useful in situations where a German doctor who doesn’t speak any English treats an American patient who will be travelling back to the US and continue being treated by an American doctor who doesn’t speak any German.  The German doctor, when filling out all the appropriate records will simply make a notation of the injury code that applies to the American patient, then any other doctor in the world and look up that code and instantly get a good picture of what the problem is.  Of course, I have greatly simplified matters here, but for the sake of understanding this is basically what happens.

As you can imagine, in order for this to be very useful it also has to be very extensive, after all, what good is a universal classification system that doesn’t provide an adequate description of your injury or illness?  However, after a certain point it starts to get a little ridiculous, we wind up with codes like W5922XD, the code for “struck by turtle, subsequent encounter” (this is not to be confused with having been bitten by a turtle, there is a separate code for that) or V9540XD, the code for an “unspecified spacecraft accident injuring the occupant, subsequent encounter.”  Both of these are real codes… statistically speaking you are more likely choke to death on a spoonful of peanut butter after having tripped over the living room rug.  There isn’t a code for that, I looked.

To tie this rabbit trail back into the topic of politics, as of October of 2014 doctors and insurance companies will be required by federal law to transition to ICD-10 from ICD-9.  This means that whatever your injury or illness, they’ve got you covered… unless you happen to be choking to death on a spoonful of peanut butter, then you might have to wait another 30 years until ICD-11 is adopted.


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