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2005-11-18 - 10:27 p.m.

I experienced a moment of... synchronicity, purpose, design, and wonderment today. It was one of those little karmic coinkydinks that bring joy to weirdos like me.

This is going to take a bit of explaining to help you see the amazing irony at the end of the story. So here goes:

One of my skills is medical coding. There is a 3 - 5 digit "ICD-9-CM code" assigned to each and every ailment you can possibly have. Even germs and symptoms are represented by their own codes. After a certain amount of time spent coding, you sort of memorize the book and I often find myself "coding" things. For example, if a house number is 4280, it's "congestive heart failure". If I see something with the number 436 on it, that's a stroke. It goes on and on. I code houses, license plates, and all sorts of numbered items.

So today, I was on the treadmill doing my thing and I was looking out this giant picture window, watching the school buses going by. Buses have numbers on them. I was mentally coding all the buses. I saw a stroke (436) go by. I saw COPD (496). I saw respiratory failure (518). Anemia went by (281). I coded about a dozen of them when something *amazing* came by.

The "short bus" was last. The number on that bus was 317.

JUST TAKE A WILD GUESS at what the number 317 represents in the world of medical coding???

Can ya guess?

Do ya know???

You guessed it...

Mild Mental Retardation!

The short bus had the mental retardation code on it!! I was amazed.

I yelled something incoherent about the short bus and confused several of my co-workers.

Coding is very interesting. I've got the book pretty much memorized. If I can't produce the whole 5 digits off the top of my head, I at least I can name the first 3 digits. Sometimes I call my clerk at the psych hospital and do the coding for that facility while I'm driving in. She tells me the diagnoses and I tell her the codes. I'm a multi-tasker. I can drive in, put on my make-up, eat breakfast, and code records all at the same time, while talking on the phone.

Don't get mad about all the phone talking, fellow road ragers. I have a hands free thingy and my numbers are all fast programmed. My car is a mobile office. I have varius books, manuals, seminar materials, a laptop, a planner, a phone, paper, pens and everything else I need right there with me. I work, on my way to work.

The Eagle shat today. Let's hope this paycheck doesn't bounce! Woohoo! The doctors got stiffed. That can't be good. They were promised checks today and it didn't happen. I guess the eagle was slightly constipated when it came time to ante up the doctor's checks.

The code for Constipation = 564.00

Can't. stop.

spring - fall

7 This comments thingy doesn't work now because I let my paid membership lapse.

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