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A Hospital Appeal.
(Special interview with Mr. Amsterdam, of the Mundane Hospital.)
ELCOME! Welcome to our Palliative Precincts! Home of Healing! Struggling Samaritans ever striving. What? Newspaper representative? Oh-excuse me-part of Royal speech-always ready. Step inside, mind the step, and keep your feet off the tape measure."
So Mr. Amsterdam greeted our reporter yesterday. "Glad to see you. Yes! busy measuring bandages! always measuring bandages and making statistics. Excuse me a moment. Let me see, six times round St. Paul's + twice the height of Nelson's monument 39806-7 inches. Seventeen bandages weigh thirteen ounces. Just unroll these for me. Each bandage two inches wide, one week to roll 'em up again. No, cannot work it that way.
"What? Yes, the Prince of Beggars' they call me, 'The Great Collector,' and other names, whilst here I receive Royalty and collect bandages. Bandages from all the wards, and measure them. Elsewhere I collect money. Money. I ask for it with both hands, and sometimes get it-in the neck.
"Every and all day, all and every other night we relieve people. Of money if they are well, of ailments if they are ill. Last year, 123,456,789 people (if my memory carries me) passed through the Hospital, some of 'em right through before we could stop them. The odd 9 turned out to be painters at work upon a new window sill, and we had a deal of trouble trying to get the medicine out of them again. We treat all alike, though not out of the same bottle. All who come, irrespective of age, sex, or creed. Even Royalty. Surprise luncheons require very careful preparation indeed, and astonishment is often expressed at the excellence of our al fresco Fever II. Yes! it used to be a trifle jumpy just at first, those surprise visits, but now we are quite used to sovereigns dropping casually into casualty. If they would only drop a trifle more often into the collecting boxes!
"We make most careful enquiries of course as to a patient's ability to pay for his treatment. Only the other morning I questioned 123456 (the figures may refer to bandages, one gets so confused) patients as to their comparative destitution. The majority appeared unable to comprehend my meaning, many left abruptly and without treatment, some were too destitute to answer me in ordinary words.
"We do it all ourselves. Sometimes I myself help-with the bandages. What do the Government do for us? Nothing. What do we do for the Government? We have voted for them. We have not. We have helped our future legislators. Last month, for instance, 789
School Board children were sent to us with ringworms. We asked them to leave them ou de, and killed them in an hour with the Royal Rays. Then the ever raging bat:le we wage against Phimotic disease. (Zymotic may be the word. I forget.) In fact to such an extent have those afflicted come to us, that we have had to place a notice in all the railway stations: -
THE MUNDANE HOSPITAL
FOR A SECOND!
with a dial to tell them how far to keep away.
"Could you not give me a few statistics, Mr. Amsterdam?" enquired our representative. "Statistics! STATISTICS!" returned the great beggar eagerly, "I am simply covered with them. They ooze from me to such an extent that when I am on my day I have to be small-warded! I have statistics for Sovereigns; Figures for the frivolous; Items for the incredulous; Facts for the feeble-minded, and Prescriptions for the penniless. I am always watchful, ever insistent. Many a multi-millionaire have I espied from my watch tower as he indolently strolls past with plutocratic pomp to his gorgeous suite on some ocean greyhound, or saunters superciliously through the district where his sweating slaves grind their grimy lives into gold. dust to guild his guilty garage (I think of getting a Daimler myself)-— anyhow, it is the work of a second to lure him into the Hospital, fill him up with statistics and Epsom salts, and thrust the ever open cheque book and ever ready fountain pen into his trembling hand.
"At any time, in any company-statistics! Irrespective of heredity, age, and sex: profession, rank, and place I forget how the tag runs- -statistics! A friend meets me-how do I do?' better than the 2 4 6 8 10 patients who entered our Hospital last week!' is my bitter retort. 'Will you not partake of another asperge en branche, sauce hollandaise, Mr. A?' enquires my West-end hostess with insouciant hospitality. Nay, madame,' I reply, with hungered reproach, 'but I will take it with me to place in the nearest collecting box. One giant asparagus amongst the CLIXM VII collecting boxes we have placed in London stations last year!' The company are impressed and out comes my cheque book. The wealthy come to inspect the Hospital or workmen to repair it. 'Tis me they meet before they go (unless they
see me first). They leave studded with statistics as tho' with bee stings. A tall visitor comes-is he aware that we use his height in packets of dilating powders before breakfast each morning? A short man—has it ever struck him that a bowl of his evident capacity would hardly hold the teeth we extract from the toothless on our special days -that the yards of drainage tubing we use at each operation would encircle his girth xyzab times-that a balloon 99 times his size could not contain the gas talked in our Tercentennial appeal? Why, you yourself," continued the deft demander, turning on our reporter, "may be ignorant of the fact that were you to give one shilling to our Hospital for every bottle of temperance ale you have consumed
But at this point our representative withdrew and the interview closed.
The Students' Club Dance.
HE success of last year's dance was repeated this year on May 15th, at the Empress Rooms. The receipts by sale of tickets amounted to £173, and the expenses to £120 8s. 6d. A cheque for £52 11s. 6d. has been handed over to the Club. To the Secretary of the Committee, Mr. A. B. Howitt, our congratulations are offered on this most satisfactory result. Not many of those present at the dance realised the great responsibilities and endless worries which are the lot of the Secretary of the Dance Committee, but all agreed that we could not have found a better man for the post. We trust that by next May Mr. Howitt may have sufficiently recovered from his exertions this year to undertake the duties of Secretary a third time, or, should this unfortunately not be possible, that a worthy follower in his footsteps may be forthcoming. Our thanks are also due to the ladies of the Committee, who, by their patronage of and presence at the dance helped to make it so successful, and to Mrs. Makins who kindly consented to receive the guests. The Stewards looked ornamental, and bore their decorations with becoming modesty.
It is understood that before next May our revered "Residents,” together with certain representatives of the Clinical Laboratory, contemplate taking out a course at a high-class dancing academy. To the results of this experiment we look forward with great interest.
CHARLES JAMES MEABURN PHILLIPS,
AGED 24 YEARS,
On May 14th we were all shocked to hear of Phillips' sad death from pneumonia. Few of us even knew that he was seriously ill. He apparently contracted a cold while acting as No. 1 during an arduous accident week, eight days before, and was compelled to go off duty on May 6th. Many at the Hospital will recall his extremely severe illness of two years ago, and his tedious convalescence after general peritonitis, secondary to appendicular trouble. We may conclude that this prejudiced, to some extent, his powers of resistance, though he seemed in himself quite to have recovered his former health. To those who knew him well he was always a true friend and a cheery companion. He was a keen sportsman, and though never excelling was always ready to support his Hospital in any game that came to hand. To his relatives we offer our sincerest sympathy.
Heard Through the Stethoscope.
HAT Mr. Nitch has been appointed a Demonstrator of Anatomy to the Medical School.
That Mr. T. A. Chater has been appointed Resident Surgeon to the Hospital at Pietermaritzburg.
That he sailed from Southampton on April 20th, after a hearty send off from several Hospital friends.
That Mr. T. C. Maclean, fresh from his trip round the world, has settled for a while at Brompton.
That we shall hope to hear the Brompton Hospital band to even greater advantage at the next conversazione.
That we are represented at Brompton by no less that four other distinguished Opsonists or Physicians, viz., Messrs. Inman, Bruce, Atkinson, and Blandford.
That the Hospital for Sick Children, Great Ormond Street, has
become a popular rendezvous for past (and present) "Members of the Hospital."
That among the House Officers we may rame Messrs. Gray, Cunningham, and Sington, and among the Sisters, Miss Wilson (late Sister Florence) and Miss Bell.
That both of the Nurses MacRae who left the Hospital a short while ago have been accepted for the army, one being stationed at Woolwich, the other at Netley.
That Mr. Devas, laid low by measles, and so prevented from attending his surgery Vivas at the College, has been excused the paper in the forthcoming examination.
That Mr. F. R. E. Wright and Miss Harper (late Sister Ophthalmic) were married on the 10th inst.
That the revised regulations as to smoking in the lobbies have met with general approval.
That few have heard of them, and that those who have not should immediately enquire at the Porter's Lodge.
That certain members of the staff have already "prejudiced their chances of future advancement."
That Dr. Stainer's wedding in Westminster Abbey on the 1st inst. was worthy of the occasion.
That Mr. R. K. Cox has been accepted by the Church Missionary Society for service abroad.
That Mr. N. R. Cunningham has been appointed to a position of trust in the Johannesburgh Hospital, South Africa.
That intense local excitement has been caused in a certain London suburb by a thrilling performance à la Milo of Coventry.
That a member of the Hospital, wearying of triumphs with stick and racquet, made an unpremeditated appearance in the title role.
That Dr. G. T. Birks (H.S. 1904) has been appointed Honorary Assistant Physician to the Bedford County Hospital.
That to Dr. Walter Haward, of Hampstead (H.P. 1904) has been born a daughter.
That the casualty temperature occasionally approaches Fever heat. That in a letter of June 4th, a Lambeth lady asserts that her son of 15 years is suffering from "St. Viper's Dance," and is in consequence "most heretable.”
Years ago in Out-patients :
Assistant Physician to cirrhotic looking individual (pleasantly): Well, my man, have you ever had any fits?
C.L.I. (enthusiastically): Yes, I've 'ad lots of fits.
A.P. (more pleasantly): Let's hear about them; were they epileptic
C.L.I. (witheringly): Epileptic fits? No! Boozin' fits!!