On a completely different topic, I had a CPR, First Aid, and Bloodborne Pathogen class this evening. We covered CPR and choking today-- first aid and bloodborne pathogens are tomorrow. Our teacher was really enthusiastic, told many anecdotal stories, and during the course of the class we learned some techniques that I'm relatively sure are not recommended by the American Heart Association (and I am, for the love of God, not suggesting you actually try):
~ If you find a stranger you looks like they need CPR and you are in a bad area of town, don't go up and kneel down near them to see if they'll respond to your call. Instead, kick them really hard in the shins. If they flinch, they're faking and you're fixing to get robbed. Run away. Otherwise, commence with your resuscitation.
~If someone is really, really fat and you can't fit your hands around their middle, lean them up against a wall and punch them in the gut. Try not to miss.
~If you are choking and no one's around, run as hard as you can into your counter top in the kitchen or some other fixed object around waist high. This will really, really hurt.
~If you have arthritic hands or knees or something, you can do chest compressions by stomping on the distressed person. Try to remember to take your shoes off.
It was certainly a lively class. Rather violent, but lively. One last tip: it is good to remember that when requesting one of those portable defibrillators they have in malls and airports all over the place, one should ask for an AED, and not, as several people called out during practice, an IED. You probably shouldn't ask for an IED in an airport under any circumstances, by the way, unless it is one of your personal dreams to spend an evening handcuffed to a chair in one of those little detaining rooms.
I'm looking forward to my class tomorrow. What crazy first aid tips will we learn?