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Katy/Photo by author

ICU + Massive Car Crash + Deep Freeze … Three More Texas Stories

In the middle of January, I got an urgent phone call. My daughter Katy had collapsed and was in critical conditon at Baylor Scott White Hillcrest Medical Center in Waco, Texas. If you follow me, you know my daughter is an RN who has been working as a travel nurse on the Covid-19 front lines since the pandemic started. She is an ICU nurse, who is now in ICU herself. This is her story.

Katy is my daughter, a Registered Nurse who has been working the Covid-19 front lines as a traveling ICU nurse since Covid began early in 2020…


It’s no wonder rural Trump voters hate the libs.

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Michigan United for Liberty at the steps of the capital in Michigan protesting stay-at-home orders, May 14, 2020. Alamy stock photo

When white militia groups began showing up in this election, when we were all shocked at how 70 million Americans could still vote for Trump despite a chaotic, scandal-ridden four years, where the president was actually impeached, with so much overt corruption and in the face of the prosecution and arrests of eight Trump associates, it is clear that Democrats missed a mandate from rural white voters, who overwhelmingly voted for Donald Trump. …


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Deb Lindsey/Getty Images

I hadn’t eaten since six the night before, and it was now three in afternoon, the next day. I was starving. The kind of hungry where you suddenly realize your blood sugar has dropped to somewhere around minus zero, and the world starts to tilt.

It is still the pandemic, but the drive-throughs are open. I look, and by some miracle there are only two cars in the Popeye’s Chicken line, which I have passed a couple times in my day of errands and appointments that started before breakfast.

I am in Texas, in a town outside of Austin, two…


Lemon Pepper Garlic Chicken and a Cautionary Tale or Two

TRIGGER WARNING: Somehow along the way this recipe started sounding lewd and went downhill, like when you say “That’s what she said” after every step. Say it to yourself at the appropriate times. Contains childish adult themes and language. Bonus spin-off recipe for Mushroom Chicken and Rice.

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Image: Apartment Therapy

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photo by author

Mother’s Day, Ant Bait

As more states relax their stay-at-home orders, I see way more people in the grocery stores, and way fewer people wearing masks. After Mother’s Day, I am thinking of ordering my groceries instead.

Because on the morning of Mother’s Day (which I totally forgot about, because who knows what day it is) I went to the grocery store. My daughter, the RN, is a traveling nurse working in the ICU COVID-19 wards in one of the hottest spots in Georgia.

I am staying in her house in Texas for the next two months, where I traveled…


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Shutterstock.com

Union Busting: Moving Nurses to the Gig Economy -A Shitty Medical Model Has Come Home to Roost During This Pandemic

Megan is an RN with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Texas. After a grueling four years in one of the country’s best nursing schools, she is deep in student debt. She struggled through college, graduating on the honor roll, overcoming illness, injury, military transfers, and a divorce, but she wouldn’t give up. Nursing is her passion, and she has put a lot of ICU work under her belt. On the night before…


Welcome to Dystopia

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Photo by author

So we are in week 700 of the Corona Virus outbreak in Seattle, a city with 3.4 million people. Or maybe it’s only week three. The big sports stadiums are shuttered, the schools are closed and Mayor Pete Buttigieg hosted Jimmy Kimmel. Welcome to Dystopia. The landscape is surreal.

Meanwhile I have to venture into one of the highest risk areas in the city; Pill Hill, where all the clinics and hospitals are -Harborview; Virginia Mason and the two Swedish campuses. I have to retrieve my new model sleep apnea mask. I HAVE to. Without a working…


In the Eye of the Coronavirus Storm in Seattle, Life is Surreal

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photo by CJ Sterling

March 9, 2020

I walk into my house, drop my keys on the counter, strip off my jacket, and drop my backpack. The hand sanitizer I retrieved from my stored luggage is clipped to the front, and it clunks on the floor. You can’t buy hand sanitizer anywhere here in Seattle. You can’t buy rubbing alcohol anywhere either. The shelves are stripped bare of both products at Fred Meyer, Safeway, Bartell and Walgreens. Early on, people bought aloe gel and rubbing alcohol and made their own hand sanitizer…


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mabelandmoxie.com/Unsplash

“Am I losing my romantic partner?” I take questions from teens and young adults about relationships. One of the most frequent questions I get is “Why aren’t they texting me back?” While this seems like a question begging for mockery of our obsession with our phones, the unreal nature of electronic relationships, and teenage angst, the underlying fear is clear. The real question is: Am I losing my romantic partner? This same question pops up in my feed in various and sometimes heartbreaking ways for other couples.

“How do I tell my wife I am tired of being married?”

“Why…


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Photo: attivialavita.com

EDIT: I want to say first, this, before I tell the story of how my mother stopped bullying by doctors in an entire state mental hospital: I am hoping that people who feel helpless to stop a bully will stand next to a victim in silent support when they see it going on. Even one person standing, as a silent witness, next to the victim, can stop a bully. I know. I have done it.

I learned it from my mother.

Silent Witnessing is something I credit my mother for. She worked as a nurse at the state mental hospital…

CJ Sterling

Writer, journalist. Commentary: Economist, Huff Post, Daily Beast, New York Times, Seattle Times, Crosscut, The Stranger. 2.77 million Quora.

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