People, especially friends and relatives, always ask me about the grossest things I’ve seen. They’re usually disappointed because I never really have an answer as I don’t find that many things gross. It’s not the incinerated bodies. It’s not the legs mangled beyond comprehension while the neighborhood dogs sniff around. It’s not the blood or the poo covering the entire living room floor. It’s not the skulls crushed like Humpty Dumpty. It’s not the aborted fetuses in the toilets.
Sometimes I tell them. Usually I don’t. Regular folks don’t need to hear about this stuff; they don’t realize they can’t handle the truth. They’re happier going about their lives while we quietly clean up their messes, unseen.
But then again, maybe they’d side less with the lying politicians who keep trying to take our pay and benefits.
The other day I came very close to my grossest experience. It may be a letdown for some people because no one’s head got blown off.
We’re at the hospital with a combative crazy woman. She’s, of course, dirty and drunk as well. She’s in 4-point restraints on our gurney. With the help of several staff members, we’re transferring her to the hospital gurney and keeping her in restraints. I’m standing at her feet, tied together, then tied to our gurney. We untie her feet from our gurney, get them over onto the hospital gurney, and we’re tying them back down.
I notice… her bare toenails are scratching my bare forearms as she fights and writhes and kicks.
Her crusty, yellow, dirty, stinky toenails.