Archive for April, 2013

Vomit Google Fish

Written by Tad. Posted in Kooks

I am amazed at people who sit in the ED waiting room for hours with some complaint that would not seem to justify the inconvenience. Sometimes, they honestly do not know whether or not their condition is serious but other times, I get the feeling patients stick around just because they are not quitters. They come, they register, they wait.

On one such occasion, I went to see a man in his early twenties with a complaint of vomiting three times after eating fish. The nurse’s note said he had no medical history and the symptoms were now all gone. I wondered what I would learn about why he had chosen to wait over six hours to be seen.

He told me he was a temporary worker at Google, which provides free food for all its employees. He said it was his impression the food provided the temps was of inferior quality to that provided to the regular Google employees. Once, in the past, he had vomited after eating the fish at work. Today, he hesitated before taking the fish but decided to take the chance. Soon thereafter, he vomited and headed straight to the ED. He said no one else who ate the fish was ill. After talking to him, it was still unclear as to why he chose to wait so long to be seen since all of his symptoms were now gone.

I gave him my usual explanation about vomiting and/or diarrhea and I reassured him there was nothing for him to worry about since he had no more symptoms.

He seemed unhappy with my explanation so I asked some more questions. I then learned he had actually complained to Google in the past about getting sick from eating the fish. Google told him they would do a survey to see if there really was a problem with the food. This did not satisfy him at all.

The reason he was unhappy with my approach to his vomiting was that he wanted something he could use to “go after Google.” I am sure my disgust must have been visible, though I kept myself from telling him what I thought of his intentions.  I told him I was unable to help and excused him.

Brother. Don’t people have better things to do?


Orange and Yellow Bags with Orange Tabs

Written by Tad. Posted in Trauma Strap Bags

As I have said before, most of the straps come with the ends sewn back on themselves. If you have been looking at my bags at all you will have noticed that I  have used these tabs as style elements. Here is a new idea I came up with to do just that. These pictures show two bags, fronts and backs.

Speculoos, Guinness and Cocoa Nibs Cookies

Written by Tad. Posted in Cookies

I am always looking for interesting ingredients. This clearly caught my attention. I have to say, I am very skeptical that a teaspoon of beer will make any difference but I didn’t try them without. This recipe has more chocolate chips and cooks for less time than the original.



4 dozen


3 cups flour

1 ½ teaspoons baking soda

½ teaspoon of sea salt

2 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup light brown sugar, packed

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon Guinness Beer

1 jar of speculoos*

1 cup of cocoa nibs

1 cup of dark chocolate chunks


1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix flour and baking soda and salt in a bowl with a whisk (I like to do this with my hand.) Set aside.

2. Mix butter and both sugars in electric mixer with the paddle attachment until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

3. Mix in eggs.

4. Mix in Guinness and speculoos.

5. Slowly stir in flour mixture until just combined.

6. With a spatula, fold in cocoa nibs and chocolate.

7. Using a cookie scoop, drop the cookie balls onto baking sheets with parchment paper. Space about 1 ½ inches apart.

8. Bake about 12** minutes, rotating once during cook time. The edges of the cookies should get a little color and then you know they are done. Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 10-15 minutes then place on wire racks.



* See my notes about this wonderful treat on the recipe for Speculoos Spread Chocolate Chip Cookies‬.

** The original recipe calls for 20 to 25 minutes. I have no idea how anyone can print a recipe that calls for baking cookies that long at 350 degrees. That would result in charcoal cookies. Don’t over cook you cookies. This is very important.

Bag Available on Ebay

Written by Tad. Posted in Trauma Strap Bags

I have been approached by many people I do not know looking to buy one of my bags. I have never sold a single one of the hundreds I have made. I have just given them to friends, family, coworkers and acquaintances. In order to let everyone have a shot at getting a bag, I have decided to try putting one up on Ebay. I have placed a minimum that will cover the shipping so I have no intentions of making money on this. It is just a way to let anyone in the country have a shot at one. Let’s see how it goes.

Click on this link to see the Ebay offering:

Three Cops, Three Cop Cars, Three Crashes

Written by Tad. Posted in Kooks

Skinnier Than Most Prisoners

Police cars need to have a way to be able to roll down the back windows of their squad cars to provide ventilation while preventing any suspect from escaping through the open window. In our fair city, they address this need by placing a metal plate horizontally across the rear window. It is placed so the window can be lowered to let air pass above and below the plate but not allow a suspect to escape.

One night, I took care of someone who challenged this time-tested system of keeping captives from jumping out of the police car window. An officer was driving down the street with a man in the back seat. The suspect was so skinny, he crawled out of the back window, squeezing over the plate and falling out of the moving police car. As the officer realized his charge was squeezing his way to freedom, he freaked out and crashed his car. Both men came in by ambulance. The suspect had minor injuries from hitting the ground. The officer had to be treated for injuries suffered in the crash.


Three for the Price of One

A 30-year-old drunk driver ran into the back of a parked police car. This drove the police car forward, striking down the officer who, was standing in front of his car, and a pedestrian he was ticketing. The driver, the police officer and the pedestrian were all injured and came by ambulance for treatment in the emergency department.


Hold on Tight!

A 31-year-old undercover police officer pulled over a car driven by a suspect. He reached in through the open window and grabbed the driver, who then started to drive away. The officer was pulled off his feet and dragged away by the moving car. He finally managed to get a hold of the steering wheel and directed the car off the road where it ran into a hedge and came to a stop. Officer and suspect were both brought in by ambulance. The suspect was uninjured and the officer was discharged with bruises and scrapes.




Star Anise Cookies

Written by Tad. Posted in Cookies

My wife and I have had a long-running joke about licorice. Following my dad’s good example, I grew up eating and enjoying black licorice. My wife, on the other hand, just can’t imagine how it could be considered edible. When my good friend, Debbie, sent me this recipe, she cautioned you had to be a real licorice lover to enjoy the cookies. I think I proved this not to be true in that Shari really liked them. I think they taste like anise in a very interesting way and not like a licorice stick, at all. The icing makes them.

Recipe By:

Debbie Smith




4 cups all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

16 tablespoons butter, softened

1 ¾ cups sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 teaspoons ground star anise

3 large eggs

½ cup yogurt, sour cream, or creme fraiche

½ cup milk


1. Heat oven to 375F. Use top 1/3 and bottom 1/3 racks to bake cookies.

2. Cover cookies sheets with parchment.

3. Cream butter and the sugar until fluffy.

4. Beat in eggs, one at a time, then vanilla and star anise.

5. Mix dry ingredients together with a whisk. Stir 1/2 the dry ingredients into the butter mixture to combine.

6. Stir in yogurt to combine.

7. Stir in remainder of dry ingredients to combine.

8. Stir in milk to combine.

9. Drop 2 tablespoon balls of dough onto the prepared pan, leaving 1-2 inches between each one.

10. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes.

11. Frost with icing, recipe follows:


8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

8 ounces butter, at room temperature

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

½ teaspoon ground star anise

1 pound, approximately, confectioners’ sugar, sifted


1. Beat cream cheese, butter and vanilla with a mixer on low speed to combine.

2. Increase speed to medium-high and beat until aerated and light.

3. Stop the mixer and add about a third of confectioners’ sugar. Beat on low speed until combined.

4. Repeat with the rest of the sugar, adding in two additions.

5. Once all is added, increase speed to medium-high and beat until fluffy.


Michelle Obama’s Mama Kaye’s White and Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies 

Written by Tad. Posted in Cookies

During the election, I thought about trying to do Michelle Obama’s and Ann Romney’s favorite cookie recipes. The problem was that the Romney recipe was a peanut butter cookie with M&Ms in them. Ho hum. These are not really amazing but they are unusual in that they have mint. I was unable to find mint chocolate chips so I used the Andes mints. They are really good and so are the cookies, if you like mint in your cookies. The other problem I had during the election was that I was supporting Obama. Could I really put a Republican cookie recipe on my blog?

I have looked and looked for my pictures of these but can’t find them. Will have to post without the usual evidence that I have, indeed , made them myself.


5 dozen cookies 


2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour 

1 teaspoon baking soda 

1 teaspoon salt 

1 cup unsalted butter, softened 

1 stick Crisco butter-flavored solid vegetable shortening 

¾ cup granulated sugar 

¾  cup packed brown sugar 

1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

2 eggs 

1 cup white chocolate chips

1 cup milk chocolate chips

1 cup mint chocolate chips (or Andes mint pieces) 

2 cups chopped walnuts (optional, of course)


1. Heat oven to 375 degrees F.

2. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

3. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, cream butter, vegetable shortening, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

4. On low speed, beat in flour mixture.

5. By hand, stir in white and milk chocolate chips, mint chips and walnuts.

6. Drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto ungreased or parchment-line baking sheets.

7. Bake 10 to 12 minutes. Cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool completely. 

Pant Hanger Cover

Written by Tad. Posted in Trauma Strap Bags

Not everything you can do with repurposed material needs to be fancy or daring. I had a pant hanger made of metal. My pants kept slipping off of it. After I figured out how to get a trauma strap cover to stay on it, the pants now stay in place.

Future Bottoms

Written by Tad. Posted in Trauma Strap Bags

When I make a bag, I start by cutting out a bottom the size and shape of the bag I have in mind. I long ago recognized that sewing the double thickness bottoms one at a time was very inefficient. If I have a sheet of the material sewn up ahead of time, it helps me get started a lot faster on a new bag.

I have also been frustrated with three big bins of straps of various sizes that needed organizing to be more useful.

To address both of these issues, I spent several hours over the weekend organizing and sewing straps into big sheets for bag bottoms, both yellow and orange. Here are the sheets I came up with so I am now ready to take off making more bags when I have time and inclination.

Copyright © 2014 Bad Tad, MD