automatic refill, schmautomatic refill

I have hypothyroidism. No big deal. In fact, my endocrinologist says that if anyone were to choose their medical condition, it’s hypothyroidism. “Pick me!” he raises his hand as if in class, “I want hypothyroidism!”

My thyroid gland is inactive. Think of it as the kid in class named Hypo who is always picked last for kickball. Hypo is a little slow to catching a fly ball. He might even let it bounce while the other body parts run around the bases. Hypo can’t kick far either. If he isn’t up to speed, neither are his teammates.

So I take Synthroid to catch up. Two months ago, I found out I have a genetic heart murmur. Also not a big deal but when paired with a high dose of Synthroid, it’s irritating. You feel light-headed, dizzy and once again you’re on that playground chasing after kickballs you’ll never get. My doctor lowered the dose from 137 mcg. to 125 mcg. and immediately I felt better.

My pharmacy (which shall remain nameless but it goes by three letters that rhyme with CVS) has a nifty little program called Automatic Refill. It calls you with an automated message stating, “Your medication is ready for refill, press any key to continue.”

I understand this is convenient. It saves the customer time and for when the customer forgets to call in a refill, it’s right there waiting. However, the automated message does not name the medication or its dose. Each customer might be on a myriad of different meds. When one of the meds has its dose changed, shouldn’t a red flag tell a human eye at CVS, “Wait, there’s two prescriptions for the same med but at different doses. Which one is right? Perhaps we should ask the customer.”

Silly me for thinking that when I hand over a prescription for a different dose, they remove the old one from their system. Or at least someone asks me to take it off. The computer doesn’t know any better. I get its message for refill not knowing what I’m approving. I assume they have their ducks in a row. Then I pick up the wrong dose and take it for 6 weeks until I happen to check the bottle.

A human eye notices these changes but not an automatic refill. CVS needs to revamp their system into identifying the meds and doses in their automated messages. The person behind the counter should have a list of all meds up on their computer screen when a customer picks them up. If they see something as simple as the same med but two different doses, then major red flags, bells, whistles, and fart noises should go off so they ask, “Ms. Jones, which dose are you taking? Would you like me to take the old dose off for you?”

In my case, it was just annoying. But in other cases, it could be fatal. And I doubt an Automatic Refill can testify in court.

big purple blob

More to a smile when it's a Grimace?

The smell —
brimming of fat and grease
greets you outside

Happy Meals sail by
wrapped in bright red cartons

A big purple blob on the wall
sips sugar branded with a yellow M

not sure why they name a cartoon character


Perhaps a message to those who eat here

The purple blob speed skates
his yellow baseball cap askew

he may look athletic
but he’s still a blob

on speed skates

The play place thumps and screams

I steal salty fries from my daughter
reading Harry Potter

countless moments of caring my foot

Band-Aid close-up

Image via Wikipedia

The Band-Aid company boasts on the back of each box the story of what inspired these boo-boo savers:

In 1920, Earle Dickson, a cotton buyer for Johnson & Johnson, noticed his wife suffering from minor cuts and burns while cooking. Combining cotton with a piece of surgical tape, he created a new solution that protected her wounds, and sped their healing. His insight led to the creation of BAND-AID Brand Adhesive Bandages.

Okay, that’s fine and good. If it wasn’t for Mr. Dickson, we’d run ’round the house searching for cotton balls and surgical tape every time Johnny skinned his knees rollerblading. But I wonder, couldn’t Mr. Dickson maybe…oh, I don’t know…told his wife to put her feet up and let her wounds heal while he cooked supper?

I can see it now:

Mrs. Dickson: Ow! Earle! I got burned by the pot-bellied stove again! My skin is peeling! Help me!

Mr. Dickson: Hmm, let me finish curling my handlebar mustache to investigate. Let’s take a looksie…well, yes, Momma, it looks like you done and gone burned your pinky finger off for the third time! Let me get this cotton and surgical tape and fix you right up.

Mrs. Dickson: Oh, Earlie, you’re such a dear. Now maybe if you can get a little snow from outside to help soothe this nasty cut…

Mr. Dickson: Oh no! I patched you up…you get back to work! That pig ain’t gonna roast hisself now, is he?

And that’s when he came up with Band-Aid’s promise: “There, for countless moments of caring!”

greeting card and magazine organizers unite!

The best greeting cards ever asks: What is your weirdest pet peeve? Shopping for greeting cards and seeing tons of cards in the wrong spots. I have to rearrange them all and their envelopes before I do anything else.

I can’t stand a singing Elvis card stuck in the Sympathy section, or a kid’s birthday card exclaiming “Whee! Look who’s three!” next to a muscle man in a Speedo in the For Her section.

Another similar pet peeve: the Entertainment section at Barnes & Noble. I hate seeing upscale publications like Script or Movie Maker stuck wayyyyy in the back behind Justin Bieber and Jonas Brothers teeny bopper magazines.

One of these days I’ll march up to the front desk and say, “Hey, see this magazine? It’s called Films of the Golden Age. It does not belong next to Tiger Beat!

But I won’t because I’m a nice person. For NOW.

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3 words that don’t go together: california pizza kitchen

Fresh Hot Chicago-Style Pizza

I got a coupon yesterday to visit California Pizza Kitchen. I think the only reason they stay in business is because Californians don’t know any better. It’s like taking a trip by plane and sitting in coach, never knowing there’s a better world up in first class.

The world would be a better place if California just conceded to the fact that they cannot make pizza. Your crust is dry, you burn the cheese and I don’t know what in the world makes up your toppings.

Leave it to New York, Chicago and their surrounding areas. Leave it to the family businesses who come in to their restaurants at 6 in the morning to make pizza dough and their sauce from scratch every day like the award-winning Bella’s Pizza Villa in Murrieta, CA. They’re in California but guess what? They’re from Chicago where the Italian sausage is real.

California, keep your sand and lingerie shops on Hollywood Boulevard, your hand and footprints at Grauman’s Chinese Theater, but leave the pizza-making up to the rest of the country.

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