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  • A Chance to Do Good

    Posted by James R. Rummel on June 5th, 2008 (All posts by )

    Let us say that you are a physically active person, proud of the abilities which you have worked and sweated to develop and hone. And then you are injured seriously enough to warrant time spent in a hospital. There is nothing to do for most of the hours of the day but to brood on what you have lost, and wonder if you will ever be able to regain full function. It would be tough to keep the blues at bay.

    Now imagine that you are a soldier, and you are in the hospital because of enemy action. Maybe your injuries aren’t going to be temporary, maybe you won’t ever fully recover. How much worse would that be?

    The Walter Reed Army Medical Center has a library of games and movies to try and keep morale up, but they need more material. We can help.

    They have an Amazon Wish List set up. You don’t have to buy new, the used stuff will do just as well for a lending library. And you will be able to purchase more items for the same amount of cash. You could even have a DVD shipped to them for as little as $5.00 USD, less than most fast food lunch deals.

    You could afford that. Right?

    Keats described his depression by saying “I am in that temper that if I were under water I would scarcely kick to come to the top”. I think we can give them a hand before they go under.

    (Hat tip to Ace, and I cross posted this at Hell in a Handbasket.)


    9 Responses to “A Chance to Do Good”

    1. Shannon Love Says:

      Military hospitals can be hellish places.

      My son-in-law was injured in training and had to spend a few months in rehab. For some bizarre reason, they didn’t let him do anything but play video games. He wasn’t even allowed access to the textbooks he needed to study for his specialization. Apparently, they structured the system to deter malingerers but for individuals who wanted to recover and get back to duty and their careers it was a hellish experience akin to being in prison.

      His experience might have been particularly bad because shortly after he left the hospital got reorganized top to bottom but historically military hospitals are unpleasant and resource starved placed.

    2. Knucklehead Says:

      Thank you for this post and this link. It isn’t hard to help a little bit and even a little bit matters.

      Re: the hellishness of military hospitals… my experience with them (well, one) is limited to the one at Ft. Knox when I was in basic training. I developed what was diagnosed as, IIRC, pneumonia. In any case I was hacking up green crap and lung bits and had a nasty fever. So they put me in the hospital where they zapped me with Gaia knows what sort and dosage of antibiotics, a decongestant that drained and mummified me, and put me in an ice cold shower every four hours (or so it seems). All that and the fear of having to repeat that Gaia-forsaken thing called Basic Training had me back on duty in 48 hours. A classic case of the cure being worse than the affliction. Of course that was many years ago and they’ve probably become kinder and gentler since then.

      While in the service a comrade was involved in a bad auto wreck and was sliced up pretty badly. He was in a German hospital for a while (until he could be transferred to an Army one) and the most memorable part of it – especially for him – were the flies climbing all over him; he found that to be miserable. They had completely open windows, no screens.

      When Euros come to visit they always remark about the “nets” on my windows. I wonder if they even use “nets” yet on their hospital windows.

      Oh well, off to Amazon.

    3. Knucklehead Says:

      OK, I’m back. Are you sure about this wish list? Most of the items are pretty dated and the recent ones are, well, a bit poofy. If that’s what they want, fine, but… “Over Her Dead Body”, “PS I Love You”?!?!?

    4. Knucklehead Says:

      Done. I couldn’t do the Full Poofy. Hope you guys scoped this out.

    5. James R. Rumel Says:

      Are you sure about this wish list?

      Although the library is available to all at Walter Reed, it is located at the Molonge House, which is an outpatient dorm for patients and their families. There is going to be a lot of stuff that the wives, children, and the small number of female soldiers there would find appealing.

      Another thing to keep in mind is that the library is run by volunteers. As I understand it from the info the Molonge House front desk was willing to impart, the person in charge is named Barbara. Maybe her tastes influence the requests somewhat.


    6. Knucklehead Says:

      Not really all that concerned, James. Thank you again. The list is just a smidgen shorter (at least for the moment) thanks to you.

    7. Knucklehead Says:

      OH, BTW, the bleg is now up at Flares Into Darkness also. Every little bit helps.

    8. Jim Jinkins Says:

      When I order from this wish list, what shipping address should I use?

    9. Jim Jinkins Says:

      Never mind. The shipping info is in the left margin of the wish list.

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