138) In the News: Immigration

June 14, 2007

El Milagro:
I have my blanket today so I start out happy. Jason the “kid” cannulates me and I like the way he is very careful in the procedures of cannulation. For example, to ensure the needles are drawing well, Jason draws blood from each needle into the syringe and pushes it back into my arm several times to ensure good flow, whereas most techs just check the arterio-venous access. Also, he is very gentle in taping up the access after the needles are set.

I settle back and read about the immigration ‘problem’ in Time Magazine. To me, this is an amazingly stupid problem. For centuries the United States has been a place that welcomed the poor and disenfranchised from other countries. Or, at least we allowed them to come in for the scraps of work and leftover bits of our 'great society'. Many of these folks came into the country illegally over the years, worked hard to scrape out a living in the bottom rungs of society, and became the backbone of the menial labor force. Much of our economy exists on the back-breaking toil of many of these people. Having grown up in the El Paso area, I can tell you that many of the farm workers and cannery workers were illegally in the country. Not to mention the maids, nannies, and janitorial workers. It was my experience that these folks did the labor that most Americans were unwilling to do because those jobs were either too 'demeaning' or too hard on the back. Once or twice in the 70's, when the Border Patrol would sweep through the valley and arrest all the ‘wet-backs’ we valley-living hippies would go for their jobs for some quick bucks. Well, we weren’t used to working 12 hour days for a buck an hour, so we didn’t last long. I worked several times for Mountain Pass Canning Co., in Canutillo and lasted there long enough to make a check or two before I got sick and tired of it, and the Mexican workers could sneak back in to take what they considered to be good jobs. Sometimes, when the Border Patrol came by our little house in the cotton fields to ask about illegal aliens (who actually were humans just like us) we'd tell them "they went that-a-way", pointing down the road in the opposite direction from whence they went. Once or twice we were surrounded by excited Border Patrol agents who inspected the huarache prints in our dusty driveway, only to find out the huarache wearers were us. That's US as in U.S. "Darn", they said sheepishly as they crawled back in their jeeps and drove off down the road.

I get cold again and call Jason over to warm up my blood. A cool trick that I frequently forget while on dialysis is to ask the tech to increase the temp of my blood as it is shot back into my body. Warms the cockles of my heart… as well as my chilly extremities.

Dialysis Tip: For those of you readers who are also on dialysis and feel like you’re in David Letterman’s studio while on dialysis, ask your tech to warm up your blood. You can really feel the warmth spread through your body. Check it out.

Notes: In at 75.4 and out at 72.5 Kgs.
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