January 17, 2008

A Little Help From Your Friends

Just after our first diagnosis we got a great email from friend we didn't know was type 1. We were in that wildly fluctuating state of shock, denial, confusion and determination that all parents new to Type 1 experience. This friend knew that we needed some reassurance and chose humor as the way to do that. He used a brilliant strategy of injecting laughs into a time when we had precious few of them. I have shamelessly try to follow his lead since.

This is roughly the story he told.

Like any type 1 kid he did fair number shots. Being a typical boy he was curious and playful with the things in his environment.

Much to his delight he found that if he used toe nail clipper to cut the needle off the syringe it made a particularly effective covert tool to squirt water on classmates.

Now I think I made it clear by the use of the pronoun ‘he’ that this individual is male. So it should come as no shock to anybody with experience at being male that this is just one of those things that we males are genetically incapable of not taking to ludicrous extremes.

Being a male in good standing and with the particular lack of forethought that adolescences ads to the mix he achieved the kind of extremes that guys love to talk about over beers for years to come.

With a little R&T tinkering he found that if he used the toe nail clippers as small pliers he could bend a small angle on the needle to allow for even more concealed around the corner squirting.

These concealed weapons achieved great success. In an entrepreneurial society, like ours, such success is rewarded in the marketplace.

Consider the business model, the cost of good sold is negligible with insurance covering the purchase of syringes. The supply is plentiful with multiple daily injections. Only minor skilled labor was required in the transformation the medical device into the covert squirted. It is practically pure profit. Who can blame the young man for capitalizing on such an opportunity?

Initial sales were outstanding even at the low, low price of twenty five cents a squirter. Sadly anti free market regulators took notice when modified used syringes started showing up all over the school.

His unique access to the building blocks of the product brought administrative queries his way. At this point our success story comes to a crashing end. The budding business is shut down by do gooder regulators in the form of the school principal who for some odd reason objected to syringes all over his school. Our budding young businessman was sentenced to served time in detention.

There are a few morals to our story. First, obvious to all us right wing reactionaries, is that big government interference ruins the business economy. Next probably is that sharps really do need to be carefully handled. Most important for me however is that we need to laugh at diabetes like everything else.

When you're down, it is great to have a friend remind you that serious and solemn are different things.


  1. I like to pull the plunger out and use it as a straw in public places like Sea World.