Pt: [looking up from her newspaper as her husband massaged her feet] "Excuse me, I need to urinate."
Me: "Okay, do you feel comfortable walking? I can show you to the bathroom down the hall."
Pt: "No dear, I don't think there's any way I can walk that far." [She walked in to the ED without assistance]
Me: "Well, then, let me see if I can find you a bedpan."
Pt: "Absolutely not."
[I then spent the next ten minutes searching the department for our bedside commode, which the patient agreed to use only after a great deal of sighing and eye rolling. After a dramatic imitation of a syncopal episode, she insisted that her husband and I help lift her]
Me: "I'll step out and give you some privacy."
Pt: "I'm going to need some water to help me go." [I grab her a cup of water]
Pt: "No tea? I always need tea with my water."
Me: "Sorry, no tea in the emergency department."
Pt: "Really? I find that hard to believe."
Me: "Really." [icy glare]
Pt: "Well, I'll at least need this water microwaved then."
At that point, I turned to stare at the husband for a moment, pitying what his daily existence must be like, before walking out of the room.