Veronica Palmer likes to think of herself as a good person. Sure, there are days when she wishes she could be more patient with her children, more proactive when it comes to her spending habits, and more dedicated to keeping up with her housework, but overall she’s a fairly decent human being. So you can imagine the horror she felt the day she realized she was more than willing to let a coworker die.
A few weeks ago, the company where she works noticed that there weren’t too many people on staff with First-Aid training. That would pose a big problem, they reasoned, if anyone were to have a heart attack, fall and hit their head, or sneeze hard enough to get cauliflower lodged up in their nasal cavity (the latter happens far more than you may realize). Veronica was thrilled when she heard that she was one of the employees tapped to receive training.
“Awesome!” she said to her boss. “You never know when an emergency will arise, here or at home. Knowing what to do will help everyone stay calm and it may even save a life. Thanks for thinking of me!”
It also helped that she would be getting two days off of work to attend training.
When she arrived , Veronica immediately grabbed every pamphlet offered. She read about how to recognize the signs of a heart attack or stroke, she saw illustrations on how to deal with broken limbs, and a write up on performing chest compressions and mouth to mouth resuscitation.
Mouth to mouth resuscitation?! Whaaaaat!?!?
She shouldn’t have been so surprised to have seen that last bit. After all, she likes watching Grey’s Anatomy just as much as the next person, but until she saw the pamphlet it totally failed to register with her that she might actually have to perform the procedure if the situation warranted. That would mean having to put her lips…on Gavin Lewis…the grossest man she has ever encountered.
Somewhere along the line, Gavin made the mistake of thinking that drinking six beers a day would give him six pack abs, that smoking a pack of cigarettes each day would make him smell as fresh as a meadow, and that saying things such as “I would totally have sex with each and every one of you ladies,” would in turn make his female coworkers want to have sex with him.
The thought of putting her lips on his repulsed her, but what if he stopped breathing all of a sudden? She couldn’t just let him die…or could she? Honestly, no one at work would be sad to see him go, but surely he has a relative or two who care about him. At the very least, the people who sell him his beer and cigarettes would be bummed about the loss of business. Plus what about the legal ramifications? Could she be charged with something like criminal negligence causing death? What defense would she use?
“Sorry judge, I know the man needed mouth to mouth, but the thought of my lips touching his made me want to kill myself. No use having two people die.”
But she had to go through with the class; so she learned how to roll an injured person over, how to bandage wounds, and how to do chest compressions and mouth to mouth resuscitation. Fortunately, there was a dummy they could use for practice. All she had to do was pass the written test.
“No one has ever failed this test on me,” the instructor said while passing out the sheet of questions. “You have half an hour. Good luck everyone.”
Veronica skimmed through the questions. They were easy, no doubt about it but you know what they say: there’s a first time for everything. Someone had to be the first person to try a banana. We all would have suffered serious burns by now if someone else hadn’t made the mistake of touching a flame with their bare hands. And a lot of people would have wasted their money if a critic hadn’t first warned them not to see the latest Rob Schneider movie. Why couldn’t Veronica be the first person to fail a simple First-Aid test? She wouldn’t be required to save anyone, most of all Gavin Lewis, if she didn’t have her certificate.
So even though she knew the answers to every single question, she bombed the test. She bombed it big time. Her family needn’t worry, or the coworkers she likes because she definitely could step up and help if needed; but without the official paperwork, no one would be expecting her to save Gavin. That’s now up to Bill Walsh because he made the mistake of getting one hundred percent.
Keep that lip balm on hand, Bill. It’s only a matter of time before Gavin’s smoking and drinking causes him to drop.