I was at the County Coroner’s Office yesterday for a meeting about redoing their website, currently one of the oldest in the County. After the meeting we were given a tour of the facilities, which are impressive. I learned a lot about their procedures, saw where the autopsies are performed [on the top floor, with plenty of windows], saw the safe where all of the weapons that result in a death by accident or suicide are kept, and even saw a bit of a training autopsy. Those few seconds, being a few feet away from hollowed corpse were much different than watching the Stan Brakhage film on the subject and my subsequent poem about it. The actual event is much more fraught, I left with the feeling that working at the Coroner’s office must demand a very specific mettle for all parts of the job. I don’t know if I could work with unknown corpses, knowing that infectious disease transmission like Hepatitis B is a very real possibility. Even transcribing the autopsy reports must be a relatively surreal act.
Their forensic photography and video departments are very very capable and manage some extremely interesting tricks with their equipment.
At the other end of the spectrum, today Debbie and I went to our one-shot lamaze class. Six hours long, it ate up our Saturday, but was quite informative. When we were doing one of the various breathing techniques, I had to count on my fingers at Debbie, and accidentally flipped her off. Of course, she cracked up and everyone thought she was the crazy one, not me.