Saturday, May 15, 2010

Burn Baby Burn (Starbucks Inferno)

Don't ever let anyone tell you that Starbucks does not have hot coffee.  In fact, hearing about the woman who is suing Starbucks in NYC because she was served tea that was "unreasonably hot in containers which are not safe", I can't help but think that our drinks are nothing but hot.

Opened this particular morning at Starbucks, there around 5:20, getting set for a 6am Saturday opening time.  Things went accordingly, and around 610, MZ comes in bringing a batch of doughnuts to fill everyone's stomachs and cellulite.  I went to grab an urn of our bold coffee, this week being Three Regions Blend, and that's when everything happened. 

Our urns are metal, with plastic tops, and on the top there is a handle on each side to grasp it with.  I put a hand on each handle, pulled it out and somehow, my right hand slipped.  The urn pivoted in my left hand, practically turned upside down, the lid came off and a gush of what can only be described as 190-200 degree coffee comes pouring out... right onto my right foot.

I dropped the urn, it landed with a thud, I hopped on my left foot and yanked off both my right shoe and then right sock, now soaked in hot coffee.  This all happened in a matter of 2 seconds.  Maybe 3. 

And man oh man, it burned.  Like you would not believe.  In hindsight, I would have gone to the sink, rinsed off my leg and foot with cool water, dried it off and applied some burn cream immediately.  Then wrap it as best I can and then carry on.

What did I do?  Dried off the coffee, massaged the wound for a minute, put my shoe on and went back to work.  Mopped up the spilled coffee, and began to deal with an injured foot while working.  It had already started to blister...

MZ came shouting from the back, holding up a coffee stained sock, "Who left their sock in the floor?!  This is a violation!  We could get in trouble for this!"   I hobbled over to her, "It was me.  I uh.. spilled coffee... on my leg.  Sorry about the sock.  We can probably throw it away."   

MZ's motherly instinct took over, as she looked at my foot with several, "Are you okay?" and "Can I help?" and "What do you need?"  That's why I work for MZ.  She takes care of me.

I got some burn cream, put it on the already fast rising blister(s) on my right foot.  The next five hours were uncomfortable, but manageable.  I quickly adapted to pivoting on my left foot, keeping the weight off of my right.  I had a Starbucks hand towel in my shoe serving as a wrap, using Scotch tape to keep it around my ankle.   At one point, while making a drink, I even sang, "Burn baby burn... Starbucks inferno... burn baby burn, burn that coffee down..."  A customer said, "You should do a dance for that!" and I kindly replied, "Oh, not this morning."

Because I've just finished The Happiest Place in the Mall, and won't have enough hours to get Starbucks benefits until about July, I have no insurance.  You'd think this would be the time I'd wish everyone would have insurance all the time, but no.   But as it is, I had to get it looked at, so I had to suck it up and go somewhere.  MZ was kind enough to let me go early (keeping Garrett on the floor--thanks Garrett!) and around noon, I headed across the highway to American Family Care.

The American Family Care on Highway 280 is located down on the southern end of the main drag of Hoover.  Its before you get to Lee Branch and the mountain, but past the 119 junction.  I've been to one "Doc in a Box" before, back in 2003, also when I had no health insurance.  Back then I was running a high fever and could barely walk... turns out I had strep throat.  Then, as now, I worked anyway cause I got bills to pay.  That Family Care, or whatever it was then/now, was on Hwy 31, close to 65, and was reasonably clean and speedy, and served its purpose. 

This AFC was extremely nice.  The lobby was very nice, comfy chairs, the attendant at the front was very pleasant, and the practitioner was great as well.  Her name was Alice, and she was a little Asian girl who I had a hard time understanding.  She took my vitals, asked lots of questions and make a few jokes that I could barely understand.  I only knew she was joking when she laughed after she said whatever she had said.  I chuckled too, just for posterity.

By the time my right foot had been doctored, there were seven burn blisters, including one huge, bubbling blister covering my ankle.  It was at least an inch thick, and in a rectangular shape--I'm not kidding when I say it was about two inches wide, and about four inches long.  And when I walked, I could feel the fluids inside of it move.  It was kinda creepy.

Another girl came in, took a look at it and told me that it was a 2nd degree burn and that I would be just find.  Alice would be back in shortly.

Alice came back in carrying with her a pile of gauze, an Ace bandage type wrap and... a small scalpel.  She placed a small, blue towel under my foot, then poured peroxide over it and wiped it down to clean it.  She said, in broken English, that she had to lacerate the blisters and drain them.  She told me it wouldn't hurt, and it didn't.  She lightly touched the sharp tip of the scalpel to the surface, and my blister was like a geyser, a fountain of fluids.  It shot through the air in a large arch, like a small child spitting water into a cup.  She pressed the blister down, and it did hurt a little as she got closer to the skin, but not too bad.  She repeated the same process onto the other blisters, each providing their own little water show.

Alice drained all the fluids, leaving my foot in a big pile of peroxide, blister fluid and burn cream atop a blue towel, and then she pulled out a jar of Silver Sulfadiazine, which as best I could tell, looked like a jar of... well, a jar of Kraft's Jet-Puffed Marshmallow Creme.  Okay, the jar didn't look like it, but what was inside looked like it.  She used a tongue depressor stick and slathered it all over my ankle, then carefully wrapped it up in gauze and the bandage.  And, just like that, I hobbled back to the front to pay. 

The pay wasn't bad--about $72 or so, and the attendant at the front told me that everyone loved Alice (apparently, she has a great reputation for giving shots--she spanks the person, then puts the needle in.  No joke).  Went back to the store for a few minutes, went to CVS for my prescription, then got home around 1:30. 

A few minutes ago--8pm--I pulled off the outer bandage.  The Lovely Steph Leann had this "uuggh" look on her face.  Even though there are two pieces of gauze still on my foot, being held on by the sticky sulfadiazine, its red all around.  I'll pull the gauze off in a little while and wash off my foot.

But... what I dread?  That shower in the morning.  Oh em gee that's going to hurt.

1 comment:

  1. Ouch and...well...Ewwww! Geez $, ya gotta be careful man! Don't be spillin any coffee on your hands okay? I count on this blog :)

    Feel better!

    Erin the Marine Wife


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