That duck can pull a truck

The call is for a middle-aged man with “altered mental status not breathing normally.” I’m responding with the ambulance crew and a fire crew to the apartment complex address listed on the MDT.

I arrive on scene as the ambulance crew is making their way inside. I know the medic fairly well. He did all of his intern rides with Slimm and I, and he is good at his job. I know he won’t need me, but I would like to see him working on his own. The fire crew has been there several minutes.

I walk in to see the fire crew taping down an IV in the patient’s arm. “It’s a white-out, C” says Ashley the medic, with his thick drawl. “Suggah is thutty.”

(Think Kevin Bacon in JFK. Not Costner, because his attempt at a southern accent was piss-poor.)

I see Ashley and his partner spiking a bag of saline while a fire crew member is reaching into his bag for the D50.

“Hey, b’fore y’all go ‘head and push that dee-fifty, let’s mix it up in this bag right here.”

“But he needs the sugar. His glucose is really-”

“I know, I know, but we should mix it up in this right here bag instead’a givin’ it straight in the vein.”

“That doesn’t make any sense-”

“Look, now. If I tell you that duck can pull a truck, then hook that duck up! Lemme show ya’ ” Ashley replies, grabbing the syringe, attaching a needle, and mixing it into the bag of saline.

“Now, what we got here is dee-ten. It’ll wake’em up just tha same, but it’s just less shockin’ to tha system” he explains.

I know exactly what he is doing, because that is my preferred method of dextrose administration.

The patient wakes up quickly, and I glance at the bag. About 100ml are in so far. Somebody repeats the glucose stick. “Eighty-nine.”

“Now see, he’s had a hunnid of dee-ten, and he’s already awake. Ain’t that suggah better’n givin’ tha whole amp and jackin’ it up to tha three hunnids?”

Apparently, when a Southerner tells you that a duck can pull a truck, you are supposed to shut up and hook that duck up.

Learn something every day.


  1. You guys have the most fascinating turns of phrase…

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