(Another one of) Jo's Annual Gardening Post(s)

It's been a good-news, bad-news kind of almost-month.

The good news is that we're very busy at Sunnydale (Healthcare for the Hellmouth). The bad news is that we're so short-staffed in every department except the one that does, like, colonoscopies and stuff that I've had five-patient days lately. As in, start with two, discharge those, get three.

The good news is that The Boy is moving down here in a couple of weeks, and that he has a fabulous new job that will keep me in beer to the point that I'll need to have my own floating scooter to get around the house. The bad news is that he's got shingles.

Yes, shingles. I diagnosed them over the phone after thinking to myself, "Gee, poison ivy doesn't usually occur along dermatomes along with a scratchy throat and a headache." He later went to an actual medical professional and confirmed it, and got all the meds he needs to fight off the outbreak.

Which is good, because the bad news is that I've never had chicken pox, and my titers have been falling the last few years. Herpatic encephalopathy is all fun and games until somebody goes blind or dies, and I, personally, have no intention of spending my remaining years drooling onto my own shirt while sitting strapped into a high-backed chair.

...Even though that sounds a lot like work.

Good news: I have, thanks to The Boy, newly weeded and replanted front beds. Bad news: we lost two tomato plants to unknown causes. Good news: there's a cardinal nesting in my rose bush, and she's laid three eggs. Bad news: I now have to find out what cardinals eat.

Good news: Changes are afoot at Sunnydale!

Bad news: They involve uniforms, not staffing. Manglement--and by this I mean the Tippy-Top people, who haven't, as far as I can tell, set foot in either Sunnydale or Holy Kamole in ten years--have decided that we all need to wear the exact same thing. From housekeeping to nursing to radiology, we'll all be wearing the same. damn. thing. Clinics to hospitals, top to bottom.

Good news: The uniforms are cheap. Bad news: They're in extremely limited sizes and are 100% polyester.

But, you know, what do you expect? When you're faced with a shortfall in staffing that's brought about by crappy working conditions and low pay, why *not* require everybody to buy new uniforms from the one place that you've declared will sell them? Bravo, Manglement, for addressing the troubles in our facilities in a constructive and thoughtful way!

Good news: I planted beans and peas and melons and carrots and radishes and okra this past week. Bad news: I watched a blue jay, that bastard, pull up each and every okra plant one by one and fling the sprouts around. The next batch I put in will be coated with cayenne pepper and bobcat pee. And will be hiding special Bastard Blue Jay Killing Machines.

Unmitigated good newses: The Boys went to the vet today and got a collectively clean bill of health. The exact words the vet used were "perfect," "beautiful," and "sweet." They're now sleeping off both the trauma of being cooed over and petted by six attractive young women, and vaccines. Flashes huddled in the exam room sink while Notamus tried to stand on his head in the corner of the room, but they both got over their jitters pretty quickly.

And now I am going to go Google cardinals' diets and head to bed. That's very good news indeed.