September 2014

 


 

 

Name Of Column Author Title Article Type
News Views Pat Sanders Mix-up in Names News & Events
VoicePoints T W Cavanagh, M.S.,CCC-SLP, BRS-S HME Tracheostoma Attachments Education-Med
Between Friends Donna McGary An Ounce Of Prevention Commentary
Speaking Out Members Fear of Going out in Public? Opinion
Dear Lary Noirin Sheahan My Newfound Friend Commentary
Travel With Larys Current WW Cruise Sent from the Ship Photos
The Speechless Poet Len A Hynds Don't Push Your Luck, Sunshine! Prose & Poetry
Bits, Bytes & No Butts! Frank Klett Self Driving & Talking Cars? Computers

 

 

INDEX AND LINKS TO EACH ISSUE MAY BE FOUND AT: http://webwhispers.org/news/WotWIndex.asp

COMMENT HERE
FEEDBACK

 

 

 

Mix-up in Names

#1

It's a major faux pas for an emergency personnel, reporter, or medical person not to understand your name. My name is Jane V....., but there was a Janet V..... in one of the towns where I lived. I found out something was wrong when a nurse asked me why I dropped 100 pounds in 30 days! After this, we were still mixed up several more times. I got Janet's clothes after a biopsy, she was going through radiation at the same time I was, and one time, I got her prescriptions at a drugstore. Please protect your identity and check everything. Write down the information if necessary and keep it with you. Always ask questions if you don't understand. Look at the paperwork you are to sign.  If they bring in meds you are not familiar with, check to see what it is. 

#2

My name is John M B..... and on the day of discharge from hospital after the total laryngectomy I had packed my bag and was waiting by my bed for my discharge medications to arrive when I was asked if I would mind waiting in the day room, as my bed was required for the next patient. When I went into the day room there was a guy in there and he looked ill. I don't suppose I looked a lot better, but he looked far worse than I felt.


Now to the point of this diatribe, his name was John M B...... (without the "e" that my surname had) but pronounced the same way as my name and he was going to be the next patient in the bed that I had just vacated. Weird or what? I wondered later if any of my tests or results or meds might have come in later by accident.


Needless to say ,I am now extremely careful about my identity and always ask for a spelled out repeat of my surname if I am talking to someone that I have'nt established a relationship with.

#3

When my husband arrived for his laryngectomy op a man standing in line ahead of us had the same last name - H.... It's not that common a name so we noticed it. During the intake process people were called in and out for various procedures. At one point a technician came out and called "Mr. H....". The other Mr.H.... had temporarily left the area so my husband & I responded. As we were walking into the pre-op room the tech said "We just have to do a xxxx test that you missed." We can't remember exactly what it was now, but at the time we knew that it was not a test that was applicable to our situation. We immediately asked what was the first name of the Mr. H... he was calling. Sure enough it was the other man.

My own regular doctor had a patient named Pat Sanders, plus me... and I ended up with her chart in my exam room one day. Luckily when he opened it, he started to scowl because it didn't look right.  After that I was more aware of the possiblity and always double checked.

Check your charts.  Watch your prescriptions to be sure they are the right name and med. Be particularly careful when having procedures in hospitals and clinics where you are not a regular patient. AND take info with you about being a larygectomee.

These notes above were all taken from the distribution list in one long discussion in 2003.

 

Enjoy,
Pat W Sanders
WebWhispers President

 

 

 


 

The following is a reprint of a 2012 article describing HME attachments and the rationale for their use. Over the upcoming months, we will feature a series of articles written from the perspective of individual vendors, detailing specific HME products. Stay tuned for more! (Kim)

 

HME Tracheostoma Attachments


Trish W. Cavanagh, M.S., CCC-SLP, BRS-S
VA Medical Center, San Francisco
Chief, Speech Pathology Section

The Tracheostoma

When an individual undergoes a total laryngectomy, the larynx is removed and the person is left with a stoma (or hole) at the front of the neck. This stoma leads directly to the trachea or "windpipe" and is the only orifice through which the person can inhale and exhale. The laryngectomized individual is no longer able to breathe through their nose and mouth and air does not even pass through the throat.

Before the laryngectomy, the nose, mouth and throat worked to increase the temperature, humidity and filtering capabilities as well as resistance for breathing. All these aspects are lost when a patient breathes through an open stoma. A laryngectomee who is breathing through an open stoma is likely to be breathing drier, colder and less filtered air than before his/her surgery. Also, the person is likely taking more shallow breaths compared to before the laryngectomy surgery because the nose and throat are no longer providing resistance to the air that is being inhaled.

If a person with a laryngectomy breathes cold, dry and unfiltered air, the airways will respond by producing more mucus in order to warm, moisten and help clear any debris that is inhaled. The individual's quality of life will be affected by the need to cough out this mucus through the stoma more frequently and in larger amounts.

Heat and Moisture Exchange Devices

There are products available to help the laryngectomized person increase the heating, humidifying and filtering capabilities lost after the total laryngectomy surgery. These products are called Heat and Moisture Exchange Devices (HME). HMEs are sold by several companies and vary in subtle ways, but, in general, each one has a cassette with a foam filter inside which does the work of retaining the heat and moisture from an EXHALED breath to be put back into the next INHALED breath. The foam filter traps particulate debris so that it does not enter the airways. The foam filter also provides resistance to breathing which causes the user to breathe a little deeper.

In order to maximize the benefits that an HME can provide, it is very important to ensure that every breath the user takes goes through the foam filter. This requires that that cassette with the foam filter inside be placed in a housing that is airtight.

Housings

A housing is the term used to describe the product that the HME user "snaps" the HME cassette and foam filter INTO, so that it stays in place in front of the stoma. The housing is the part that creates the airtight seal, which in turn, allows every breath the person takes to go through the foam filter that is being held in the center of the housing.

Housings are available in two basic styles. An external housing is a round or oval adhesive "donut" which the user sticks to his/her skin AROUND the stoma. The hole of the "donut" or disk is where the HME cassette is "snapped" into so that it is directly in front of the stoma. The very important, and sometimes tricky part of using the external housing is to assure that the adhesive seal against the skin is complete and airtight. Difficulties can arise when the surfaces of the skin around the stoma or peristomal areas are irregular. The irregular "topography" of the skin will make achieving a complete adhesive seal a challenge. To give yourself the best chance of using an external housing, it is recommended that the skin around the stoma is clean and dry prior to placing the adhesive housing. Users may also find it helpful to use a silicone skin barrier, such as Skin Prep, along with extra adhesive, such as Skin Tac, before placing the adhesive housing.

The second general type of housing is called an intraluminal housing. These types of housings have a portion that is placed inside the stoma and generally do not rely on an adhesive component to create an airtight seal. The airtight seal is accomplished by a well-fitted intraluminal housing. The length and diameter of this type of housing should be determined by a Speech Pathologist or an ENT to assure a good fit. Some intraluminal housings will still require a small adhesive component to keep it in place, but many do not.

Attachments

Once the laryngectomized person has established a housing that is well-fitted and airtight, there are a number of attachments that can be placed into that housing in addition to the HME. There are valves that allow for hands-free speech for voice prosthesis users, several types of shower guards that can fit into all housings allowing the user to take showers without having to worry about water running into the trachea. Even laryngectomees who have need for a whistle can attach a special whistle into a housing.

If you or someone you know is having difficulty getting a housing to fit well, a speech pathologist knowledgeable in the care of the laryngectomy patient can be very helpful. There are many products on the market to help in this area and as an SLP working with this population, it is our job to know the products that can help each of our patient's unique needs.


 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

An Ounce of Prevention …


Pat’s column this month relates some scary stories about the kind of preventable errors that can occur in medical situations. Since those examples date back over a decade I thought it would be interesting to revisit the issue. According to an NPR Health News article from September 2013 -

“It seems that every time researchers estimate how often a medical mistake contributes to a hospital patient's death, the numbers come out worse.


In 1999, the Institute of Medicine published the famous "To Err Is Human" report, which dropped a bombshell on the medical community by reporting that up to 98,000 people a year die because of mistakes in hospitals. The number was initially disputed, but is now widely accepted by doctors and hospital officials — and quoted ubiquitously in the media.


In 2010, the Office of Inspector General for the Department of Health and Human Services said that bad hospital care contributed to the deaths of 180,000 patients in Medicare alone in a given year.


Now comes a study in the current issue of the Journal of Patient Safety that says the numbers may be much higher — between 210,000 and 440,000 patients each year who go to the hospital for care suffer some type of preventable harm that contributes to their death.

That would make medical errors the third-leading cause of death in America, behind heart disease, which is the first, and cancer, which is second."

I did a bit of informal checking and found that practices for something as simple and basic as patient identification vary widely between doctors’ offices, hospitals and regions. Here in Maine, at all my doctors’ offices and at the hospitals I am always asked my birthdate before any procedure or medication either administered in a hospital setting or at the office or lab. I am asked my birthdate before routine blood work even when the tech knows me by name and she always checks it against the order. Same at the pharmacy and even when I am in the hospital and the same nurse gave me meds just 4 hours earlier plus she still checks the wrist ID. I have sometimes found that silly or at least redundant but in the face of these statistics I am glad they are all so vigilant. It means this is protocol that is habitual and that means better/safer care for us all.


Obviously, just checking the birthdate would eliminate all but the rarest of identification mix-ups. Granted many of the preventable errors are not because of mistaken identity but the vast majority ARE due to medication errors and the first line of defense against that obviously is making sure that the right person is getting the right medicine.


According to a 2006 report from The Institute of Medicine, medication errors alone injure 1.5 million Americans and cost 3.5 billion in lost productivity, wages and additional expenses. These are hospital setting administered medication errors and there is a promising development to significantly reduce those numbers.


To combat this more and more hospitals and clinical settings are adopting Computerized Provider Order Entry (CPOE) systems. This is from an article in The Journal of Health-System Pharmacy published in 2005.


“Medical errors are widely acknowledged as a major threat to patient safety. Medical errors result in 44,000–98,000 deaths per year—more deaths than those caused by highway accidents, breast cancer, or AIDS.[1] The leading cause of error-related inpatient deaths is adverse drug events (i.e., medication errors that result in patient harm). An estimated 7,000 deaths are associated with medication errors annually.[2]Medication errors that result in preventable adverse drug events occur during all stages of the medication-use process: ordering (56%), transcribing (6%), dispensing (4%), and administration (34%).[3]


Several promising health information technologies may help to reduce the number of medication errors that occur. Computerized physician order entry (CPOE) may prevent ordering and transcription errors, automated drug-dispensing systems and robotics may minimize dispensing errors, and devices used at the point of care may mitigate administration errors.”


As it turns out my local hospital has a CPOE as do all of the hospitals in this region. Little old Maine and by old I mean literally; we are the oldest, demographically speaking, state in the country and one of the poorer, I might add happens to have a pretty darn good record when it comes to “doing no harm”. As a matter of fact according to the Leapfrog Group , a non-profit “employer-based coalition advocating for transparency, quality and, safety in hospitals” http://www.leapfroggroup.org Maine has the highest percentage of hospitals getting an A rating.


So what does this mean for all of us? Be vigilant. Ask questions and if you aren’t in a position to ask questions have someone with you bold enough to do it for you. Be a partner with your health care provider. Most of them will appreciate your effort to be informed and involved. If you find one who isn’t get another one. And ask beforehand whether your doc and the hospital have a CPOE. From the NCIB (National Center for Biotechnology Information) in May 2013 -


“Processing a prescription drug order through a CPOE system decreases the likelihood of error on that order by 48% (95% CI 41% to 55%). Given this effect size, and the degree of CPOE adoption and use in hospitals in 2008, we estimate a 12.5% reduction in medication errors, or ∼17.4 million medication errors averted in the USA in 1 year.”


CPOEs are expensive and not perfect. I have one doctor who drives his NPs and staff nuts because he can’t seem to figure out the system even though he’s a good doctor. There are federal grants to help defray costs but hospitals need to maintain systems and keep them updated.


Still, given the cost in human suffering and real dollars from medication errors alone it seems that getting up to speed on new technology is an imperative.


 

 

 

 

"Did you have fears or anxiety about going out in public or attending social events after your laryngectomy?

If so, how did you deal with it?"

 

 

Pat Sanders, Birmingham, AL - 1995

If I see someone staring, I quickly raise my hand and give a little wave..with a smile. If my hands are full, a smile and nod will do.  I think I am always trying to keep the other person from feeling awkward that they got caught staring! I think that others are curious, not mean, and mostly people have been very kind. I found untold numbers who had remembered family members who has used an EL.

I went through the usual early discoveries that some people think you can't hear well... so they talk louder, or if you write a note, they write a note back.  Those are kind of funny, or should be regarded as fun, not insulting.  At least they are trying. Learn from them and let them learn from you.

I had some of my worst times trying to be understood on the telephone... and being hung up on is frustrating.

 


 

Bob Bauer, Hayward, CA - Class'08


I really didn't have a problem going out in public. As a matter of fact I found it very interesting to see the reactions to my Hands Free HME. Most people either didn't notice it or just glanced at it and kept on walking. The young ones were the most interesting. They would just stare and stare wondering what in the world is that thing. A few teens would asked about it and listened as I explained what happened to me. They were quite polite because I have a jejunum and my voice is a whisper. Even the clerks in the stores are very patient. Going out should not be a problem. It is what it is. Our lives have been altered, but not extinguished.
Best regards to all

 


 

Quote: Robert Frost

Half the world is composed of people who have something to say and can't, and the other half who have nothing to say and keep on saying it.

 


 

Brenda Hupp, Safety Harbor, FL - Nov 2002

I've dealt with this fear and anxiety routinely, for the past 12 years. In fact, just tonight I attended a lecture on aging gracefully at my local library, and while waiting for the speaker to arrive and begin his presentation, I was stared at by a few people who turned around to look at me because of my Servox voice when I spoke with the friend who attended the event with me. I don't think I'll ever become accustomed to the stares ... some people seem to think my Servox is some kind of toy that's being used for humor, to make my voice sound like a robot, I guess, since I get smiles and giggles from some people. I'm sure they don't realize they're being hurtful, but it hurts nonetheless. Because of this type of reaction from some others, there are times when I simply don't talk. Doing so limits my enjoyment of many events I attend, but as self-preservation, it is how I cope with the rudeness of others.

Brenda Hupp
Safety Harbor, Florida
lary since Nov. 2002

 


 

Sharon Severini, Waterbury, CT - 11/30/2012

I do NOT like going most anywhere in public since my total laryngectomy.I hate when people stare.


Also I extremely hate when I have to cough in a quiet place. (ie... church, courtroom when I go to listen to daughters ongoing issues, classroom for when I go to open house for granddaughter, movies,and anywhere else that is somewhat quiet.) I try as hard as I can not to have to go unless I absolutely have to.


Even when I go to grocery store or other stores such as Walmart, I absolutely hate it. I am very snippy when people do stare or give dirty looks when I interrupt the "quiet".. (So rude people are and so not understanding of someone with a disability such as ours.
Thanks,
Sharon

 


 

Len Hynds, The speechless poet of Ashford, Kent, England - 2004

There is no doubt that immediately after I left hospital after my operation, I had this fear of what reaction I would receive, when the valve was fitted and I could speak again. This fear was repeated when I eventually had the valve fitted, and I found that I was avoiding to talk,leaving it to my wife Tilly to do the talking for me. This I know was cowardly, but at club meetings, I was chatting to other Laryngectomees, their family and nurses, and slowly that fear vanished as I gained confidence. I then realised how much more difficult it is for ladies to face the world with this robotic voice, and the majority tend to hide themselves away. That realisation made me feel rather ashamed of my fear, and not at all manly.


I always if meeting somebody for the first time, apologise for my artificial voice, and from that moment on you have a friend for life, who will never forgret you.


When I started writing for the club, way back in 2009, one of my pen pals in America, told me how when in a restaurant the couple sitting nearby kept staring at her everytime she spoke. She just lost her temper. If she had looked, smiled sweetly and explained about her voice, they would have become immediate friends.


 


 

Quote: Bill Gates

I'm a great believer that any tool that enhances communication has profound effects in terms of how people can learn from each other, and how they can achieve the kind of freedoms that they're interested in.

 


 

Brenda Jackson, Riverside, CA - 2010

I wanted neither fear nor anxiety to set in so the first thing I did after my surgery was I registered in Riverside California Community College. I took a class to get myself out in the open so I could feel comfortable about being in public with my cancer experience. To make a long story short, I'm glad I went. I had to prove to myself that my experience was nothing to feel insecure about. However I got an A in the class and ended up sharing with the class the dangers of smoking. The downside of going was I had so much homework that I did not have time to practice my ES speech. When I did learn ES I always tell people how I could have learned sooner but attending college held me back. (big smile).





Aaron Futterman. Buffalo Grove, IL - December, 2010

This month's Speaking Out question is a good one. I have always worked with the public being in the retail furniture business as a salesperson, assistant manager, and just before my surgery, a sales trainer. Towards the end of my career as a trainer, the company I worked for had to downsize and I was laid off with 40 others. Frankly, I was glad since I was having so much trouble trying to speak.


I always tried to be positive, and I wasn't sure I would be up for this challenge, but meeting with a lary before my surgery really gave me a lot of hope.


After surgery, I stayed home a lot recuperating and learning as much as I could about this ordeal. Once I got my TEP and began to speak again with my new voice, I was very encouraged as well as people telling me how great I sounded very much like my old voice except deeper, and some said sexier!


When I tried to get back in sales, my previous employer hired me back as a part time sales person, which was great, but I had to conquer the new issues of the mucus and the sometime stares, especially from kids. I always would thank anyone who asked me what happened, and said there are worse things in this world.


Presently I work for a great company selling furniture who hired me in 2012. I was previously accepted to work for another company, but when I went for the in person interview I was told the job was no longer available, which I knew was bull. The point here is there will always be issues, but the key is to stay positive and go forward. Thanks for family, friends, fellow Larys, and organizations like WebWhispers and the IAL.



 

Quote: Walt Disney

Of all of our inventions for mass communication, pictures still speak the most universally understood language.

 


 

Mike Rosenkranz, Plantation, FL - Jan. 6, '99

I had no fears or anxiety. This was just one more speed bump in life’s journey, and all my thoughts were on what I had to do to get through it. I was my wife’s caregiver and had to get back to that. I was at the supermarket within days with pen and pad to help others understand me. Bought a car shortly thereafter using Sue instead of pad and pen. Sue was the only one who could translate my buzzing into actual words. Flew up north by myself a few months later for a social event, and have never stopped. Flip Wilson said it best. “What you see is what you get.” If anyone had a problem with that, it was going to be their problem, not mine.

 


 

Jim Fohey, Oscoda MI - class of 94

I had many fears and a lot of anxiety after my Laryngectomee as I lay in the hospital for 11 days. I owned a restaurant a very busy one, how was I going to communicate with my customers and my staff? As owner I was chief cook, bottle washer and if the porter didn’t show up I cleaned the rest rooms also. I had always put great stock in communication with my employees and also my customersn many of whom were friends now not just customers.

Once home I waited for a week before going in due to some problems, during this time I sat and thought about going back into the public eye, how would I be perceived by my customers and employees. One night sitting in the dark, I decided to hell with it if anyone had a problem with how I now was it was their problem I would not make it mine. The next day I was back at work.

I had to do a lot of explaining what a laryngectomy was and how everything worked and what no longer did work. When pulling my shift in the kitchen which can be a noise filled place with all the equipment and exhaust fans and all. It just meant they had to listen better and I had to talk slower and more direct to each person and I had to have someone taste things for me as my taste was off and some sauces and soups need to be tasted before going out. After a short adjustment period everything worked out well. I am sure that the need to get back into my business helped me a great deal in getting back into the everyday process of living. I also can see how without this inducement it could have easily taken me a lot longer.




Noirin Sheahan, Dublin, Ireland - July 2013

For much of my life I’ve had some level of discomfort at ‘speaking out’ and some fear of public speaking. And in ways it’s easier now – as I noticed when I did some teaching at a meditation centre recently. Each day I would say a few sentences as an introduction to the evening talk (given by the resident teacher). On the first day especially I felt quite nervous, as this was my first attempt at public speaking since the operation. Previously, hearing any tremor in my voice or shortness of breath would have made me even more self- conscious, but now no traces of my emotional state leaked through the drone of the electro-larynx. It didn’t matter if my whole body trembled or if how breathless I was – all I had to do was push a button and mouth the words. I realised there can be advantages in having a mechanical voice!

 


 

Thank you for your submissions. Edits are used for length, clarity and to keep comments on subject of the month. 

Staff of Speaking Out

 

 

 

 

My Newfound Friend

Noirin Sheahan

 

Like most challenges you have posed, my dear Lary, going out in public has sometimes been difficult, sometimes easy. So much depends on my mood. Some days I’m happy and confident and can go out with a sort of bravado along the lines, “This is me with my friend, Lary. I hope you’re OK with us, but if not that’s your problem”. And then I get days when confidence drains away; I feel like a scared mouse, half-ashamed of you I have to admit, and hoping against hope that I can do whatever business I need to without asking for help.


You have helped me to put all those easy-to-say mindfulness maxims into practice, Lary my dear. Especially the one about working with conditions just as they are. So, on those bad days, I don’t try to talk myself out of my scared mouse state, but just acknowledge “this is how it is today, frightened, not wanting to speak, feeling insecure, feeling unworthy, not liking this...” and so on, naming feelings and thoughts as they occur without judging them as good or bad. And feeling the bodily sensations of those states – usually some stinging around my neck and tongue (don’t like those ones, Lary!) maybe butterflies in my tummy or a slight nausea, tense jaws, the skin on my face shrinking into my skull (especially don’t like that one!). For a bit of relief I bring attention to more neutral bodily sensations: the pressure of my feet on the ground, the feeling of my breath going in and out, or I might gently rub my fingers to give me a softer focus for a few moments. Those are tough times, Lary, very tough.


But after a while some courage and hope usually return, and I might find myself remembering that the world isn’t altogether bad, that people will not beat me up for being a laryngectomee. In fact most are likely to be kinder than if I was completely able-bodied. So that’s one great thing you do for me, my friend, you bring out the kindness in those around me. And at times you also bring out the best in me. I remember one day, as I lurked around a shopping mall trying to get the courage to ask for something in the hardware store, the memory came back of the store keeper smiling at me the last time I was in, patiently trying to figure out what I was saying. In my vulnerable state, I felt deep gratitude for this memory of his kindness. It’s not a thing I would have really noticed before you came along, Lary, how much I need others, how much I value their goodness.


So on those bad days I naturally turn to mindfulness to help me through the distress. On the good days it’s harder to remember to be mindful. So easy to believe, ‘‘this is the real me, confident, happy, sure of my place in the world”, and to take a pride in feeling so good. But mindfulness practice asks us to note all this objectively, always remembering the fragility of both these states. Instead of believing “I am confident and always will be, this is the real me” I might feel grateful for this episode of happiness and confidence that has come my way for a time. And sense that I will survive its eventual crumbling. There are a few lines on this theme from the Sufi poet Rumi:


This being human is a guest house
Every morning a new arrival,
A joy, a sorrow, a meanness,
Stand at the door laughing and invite them in.

I have to admit that I still find this easier to apply to sorrows, meanness and other negative states. But every now and again, on those good days, I do remember that this joy also is a passing guest and not mine to hold to forever. A welcome visitor: a product of lovely circumstances like good health, good food, good friends or just not having a headache. If I remember this I can greet joy with gratitude and wonder as it passes through. And then when it fades I can say goodbye, trusting it will come back again when the time is right.


I’ve rarely been rejected or dismissed because of you and the mechanical voice you have given me. On one or two occasions, people have closed up in embarrassment, making some brusque reply before turning away. But mostly people have taken extra care to listen carefully. Some people ask me about the electro-larynx – how it works, why I use it. I usually appreciate the chance to explain – it makes the situation more normal and can lead on to a more personal conversation. It’s like bringing you into the conversation, Lary, instead of us all ignoring you. Once I was walking through the countryside to my favourite resting spot – a little lake surrounded by trees and low hills. It’s quite remote and I’ve never seen anyone else there before but that day I came upon a couple fishing. I felt like a bit of an intruder and was tempted to creep by them with just a nod, but the man spotted all my electronics (I use a voice amplifier as well as the electro-larynx, so am kitted out with headset and microphone as well as a loudspeaker strapped around my waist) and asked about them. That started an hour’s friendly chat. They being well able to understand me and perhaps glad of this novelty in an otherwise quiet day, and I being very uplifted by their interest in my condition. They wanted to know all about you, Lary; you were the centre of attention! If I hadn’t been using an electro-larynx neither of us might have found the excuse to break into each other’s worlds.

So you’ve helped me meet some good people, dear Lary, my newfound friend.

 

 


 

Roger and Carol Johnson, son Scott
Ed and Pat Woodruff
Neil and Naomi Arnold

 

Dee and Ron Kniffin
Terry Duga and Ed Chapman
Pat Sanders with new friends

 

Icy Strait Point
Ship used tender to go to dock
Early fish processing machine

 

Icy Strait is an old fish processing plant from many years ago and they made it into an interesting stop for going through the old plant, shopping for Alaskan items and even had a restaurant.

Museum
Museum
Misty day on way to Ketchikan

 

Shops on shipboard are only open when we are at sea, mostly expensive but fun to browse  They were getting ready for a big art auction and had a big salon full of paintings.  Again, fun to browse.

Shops on ship
Shops on ship
Art galleries on ship

 

More pics will be available later when we can sort them out.  Terry Duga will have his view of the folks, the fun and the food next month.

 

 

 

 


 

 

Many of you will have watched the American TV series years ago, called “Hill Street Blues” which was a great favourite of mine. It showed a typical police station in New York, I think, but it was so much like mine in that poorer part of London.
Almost opposite my station in South London was a street market, called East Street, busy all the week, but extremely busy on Sunday mornings, and was on a par with the more famous Petticoat Lane to the
north of us, on the edge of the “ City”. Both places were where something could be stolen from you when you entered, only to find it on sale when you reached the far end. This is a story of my very first day in this cauldron of villainy.

DON’T PUSH YOUR LUCK, SUNSHINE


There were always four P.C.s posted along the length of the market, each covering about four junctions or side streets, where the unlicensed street traders ( the barrow boys ) would try to operate. We had to keep these junctions clear for emergency vehicles to operate if needed, but also I suspect the licensed street traders had complained to the council of these unlicensed people operating there.

This was my very first Sunday morning in the market, and I had about 100 yards in the very centre containing various side roads. It was packed with people and as I went from one junction to the next moving those barrow boys on those behind would just step back into place. Each barrow boy would have at least two look-outs who followed me doggedly. I didn’t mind them moving back and selling more, as it was an impossible task, and so long as they moved when they saw me coming, I was content.

The face of every policeman at the station was known and all could see that this was my first day amidst all that Dickensian market villainy. The regular stall holders looked at me a bit askance at this new boy thrown in at the deep end. I spun round when I felt a silver half-crown being pressed into my hand, and gave it back to one of the look-outs, who had been trying to bribe me, telling him not to try that again. The word soon went around that I was not playing that game. But my test was sure to come.

As I approached one junction, the barrow boy looked up and saw me, but still kept on serving customers. I knew he had been warned of my approach, and this was to put the frighteners on this new young copper who wouldn’t take a bribe. I stood next to him as he was serving, warning him of the consequences if he didn’t move, and he took a box
into the middle of the road, stood on it amongst all the passing crowd, shouting in a loud voice and pointing at me, “ I’m trying to make an honest living. I’ve only just come out of prison and trying to go straight. I’ve got a wife and kids to support. It’s police harassment.”

The huge crowd surrounding him started saying, “ Shame. Leave him alone.” and things like that. I thought, “You cheeky bugger, you’re not married and you support nobody but yourself.” He had been pointed out to me whilst learning beats as a pretty unsuccessful burglar always getting captured and being sent to prison.

The crowd cleared a pathway for me as I strode towards him, saying,
“You were warned; you’ve been pushing your luck, Sunshine.”


I pulled him from the box, putting his arm up his back, telling him that he was being arrested for obstructing a police officer in the execution of his duty, and for trading without a license.

I marched him the entire length of the market with his arm up his back, with a slow measured tread to ensure that everybody saw us, and even my colleagues looked astonished, asking if I needed help, which I declined. He was mine and we entered the station like that. He kept apologising to me and saying his lookouts would probably sell all his gear and vanish. He was charged and pleaded guilty the next morning, where more profuse apologies were made. I told him that he had come unstuck by being too lippy.

My next Sunday on duty in the market was entirely different, where all the stall holders said, “ Morning, guv”, and the barrow boys had wings on their feet.

It was six years later, when I was called to a tenement flat near the market to deal with a cot death. My barrow boy friend had married and it was his first son. The poor young wife was devastated and I felt so sorry for her. Her husband was in Bedford Prison for yet another bungled burglary. I phoned the Governor and got him out under escort for his baby’s funeral. On his way back to prison he asked the escorts if he could call in the station to thank the PC concerned .

It was only then that he realised it was me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Self Driving and Talking Cars??

 

 


The untapped uses for the computer technology of today is offering many promises to improve our lives and make daily things safer. Our auto makers are researching newly presented areas to improve the safety and security of our vehicles. We have had Global Positioning Systems (GPS) for quite a while ...even to the point that they are near extinction since most smart phones will do the same thing for you now.

Dedicated short range communications (DSRC)

Then there is drive by wire tech...again Brian Cooley’s video report explains what we can expect from this amazing use of computers. DSRC eliminates many of the parts we have known for years and replaces them with servos and electrical switches all controlled by a central computer. This allows for a dramatically lower weight of the vehicle thereby reducing the energy required to propel it. Gas mileage in excess of 50 MPG is realistic and more mileage for the electric cars for the same battery size as before.

CNET’s Brian Cooley provides a graphic view of this tech in this video...

http://www.cnet.com/videos/car-tech-101-the-coming-revolution-in-drive-by-wire-cars/

Just a few minutes can help you understand how this is done.

The next generation of cars will mark the introduction of “talking” cars...that will further extend the use of DSRC and Near-Field Communications technologies by allowing vehicle to vehicle communications, as well as communications with traffic devices and monitoring sensors. Without human interaction the cars of tomorrow will pass each other and make turns without the danger of collision or driver inattention.

Another of CNET’s Brian Cooley video reports on talking cars and the potential gains we will experience...

http://www.cnet.com/videos/whats-the-future-of-so-called-talking-cars

We can expect this technology to also save the lives of children and pets who might be left behind in a locked hot car. The interior sensors are being fine tuned to include the use of motion sensing tech and along with features similar to On-Star will be able to alert the owner and/or authorities when situations seem to be developing,

Again CNET provides us with a video view of this critical tech...

http://www.cnet.com/videos/car-tech-101-the-coming-revolution-in-drive-by-wire-cars/

(From the Editor: these videos take a few minutes of your time but use simple language and graphics to show you what they mean by what they call talking cars.  Of all people, we at WebWhispers know the difference between talking and communicating and the car beeps at you or to you!  It serves the same purpose and you don'r have to "pick a language."  Thanks, Frank for getting us ahead of others in understaning technology.)

 

Tips and Tricks!

Reminder: In late June the IAL annual convention was held in Buffalo, NY...and if you attended why not consider sharing your trip’s photos and highlights with the rest of us on Webwhispers Forum: http://forums.delphiforums.com/webwhispers/start

If you are not a Forum member yet, then just follow the link above and sign up for this terrific site where we meet to communicate via message boards.

 

A 3 minute break!

Remember to take regular short breaks from your computing time to enjoy a video that fits our lifestyle and willl give you a little fun. Turn it on and stand up!

http://biggeekdad.com/2014/08/dont-look-good-anymore/
If you’re over the age of 50, chances are you might not look as good as you did in your younger days and the words to this funny song might sound really familiar. This is the first single released by the Snake Oil Willie Band and is called “I Don’t Look Good Naked Anymore”.

 

 

 


 

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