Pros: Today, I completed a two day first aid course and to be honest with you, I’m full of it. So much so that I feel like singing a duet of Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better with Mother Theresa, except I can’t because, you know, she’s dead. And to be honest, as kind and motherly as she looked, she didn’t appear to be the singing type, so perhaps it’s best all round (that we aren’t doing the duet, not that she’s dead.)
You want mouth to mouth? I’m your man! You need some part of your anatomy flooding with my own harmless (yet very lovely) fluids due to third degree friction burns? I’ve got your back. And not only do I have your back, but I know exactly where to whack you (five times) if you’re choking on something entirely inappropriate. My new skills will be enough to save you from an embarrassing trip to your local A&E. You don’t want nurses with bad perms laughing at you behind your back as they empty your bedpan, do you? And if I can’t dislodge the errant marital aid by rupturing your spine, I can have you bent over and chucking up the offending article as I deliver my own version of the Heimlich Manoeuvre (it’s two parts Heimlich, one part Hokey Cokey and one part reverse twerk, if you’re wondering.) Today, I was even crowned king of the bandage, which made me disproportionately proud until I realised that the course instructor (possibly a direct descendant of Charlie from Casualty) said bandage and not bondage. She was a bit incoherent, to be honest. She pronounced my name Shonny as opposed to Johnny, even though she wasn’t even a little bit French. I quite liked it although I don’t think she liked me very much. In fact, she seemed to take against me when I disappeared to the toilet for twenty minutes this morning, just after she started rambling on. It wasn’t my fault. It was the fault of the curry I inhaled last night.
Upon my shamefaced return to the room, I couldn’t do anything right for the next hour. She corrected me for the way I was giving CPR to Chucky, a terrifying looking plastic baby and then when I did what she asked, it turned out that I was wrong again and she made me do it the way I was doing the first time around. I don’t think it helped my case that when I finished giving CPR, I thought it would be funny to say, ‘Time of death: 10:46.’ She may not have been French, but she sure had the sense of humour of particularly dour Parisian.
Cons: It turns out that I can’t take anything seriously. Who knew? This was not good for the instructor’s resting bitch face, which was of an Olympian standard throughout. Apparently, when considering when to call the ambulance for an unresponsive, non-breathing person, the correct answer is not: ‘Depends on who it is.’ Also, it turns out that it’s not a good idea to check a baby’s responsiveness by shaking them as though they’re a particularly rattly Christmas present. At least I know that now. Phew.
Fortunately, I made a rather lovely chum on the course and we kept each other sane through a series of well timed nudges and comedy winks. But you know how wherever you go, there’s always one? And by one, I mean one utter and complete twat. Well, for a change, it wasn’t me. The One in question - let’s call her Mrs Dickhead, because if the phallic-shaped cap fits, then Mrs Dickhead shall wear it. And not only will she wear it, but she will give you a ten minute run down about how she is an expert in both dicks and caps and how her children are also proficient in a variety of penis-shaped head decorations. I was weary of her from the outset. We were compelled to introduce who we were and share something interesting about ourselves to the whole group. I know: horror, cringe, no one cares, etc. At least we didn’t have to wear DIY name badges as though we were all simple or disabled. Mrs Dickhead thought it would be appropriate to say, ‘Hi, I’m Mrs Dickhead and what is interesting about me is that I enjoy cross-stitch.’ A resounding argument for enforced euthanasia, I’m sure you’ll agree. Not only does she love a lovely cross-stitch (how she manages to keep her heart rate down is a mystery to me), but she’s also brilliant at talking over everyone. She is first class at correcting people (including the instructor) and telling them that they’re doing it wrong, only to massively fuck it up herself or just start inexplicably gesturing wildly, as though she’s a really dramatic Kate Bush video. Case in point: she shouted at me for using one finger to raise a baby’s chin to open the airway (which was correct, thank you very much Mrs Penis Bonce) before having a bash herself where she performed what looked like a karate chop to the forehead. At one point, the instructor asked what we would do if we chanced upon a child who had drunk some bleach. Mrs Dickhead thought that the right answer was, ‘I’ve been to almost ALL of the Caribbean Islands!’ Silly cunt.
Chances: Given my general propensity towards calamity, it might be best that I give this one a bit of a swerve. Besides, isn’t the fundamental principle of all medics to do no harm? To be honest, if Mrs Dickhead needs an ambulance, I can’t promise that. Especially as I might be the reason she needs it in the first place.