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Friday, July 16, 2010

Waiter, Can You Save My Life, Please?

Hopefully you are not sick of reading tired reposted shit. But vacation calls me. It calls me a bitch, but it still calls me.

The Bitchy Waiter

Working in a restaurant for so many years, you know that eventually you are going to have to deal with the prospect of someone choking on a piece of food. It ain't pretty and I never want to have to deal with it. I myself choked once and had to have the fucking Heimlich performed on me and that is the last time I try to eat a frozen fucking Snickers bar. For real. Scary shit. Amazingly, with my 83 years of food service experience, I have only seen it happen one time. Black Eyed Pea, Houston, Texas, West Gray Street. Some man who was not in my station started to choke on something. It was probably a grizzly ass piece of chicken fried steak that got all stuck in his wind wipe and shit, but he started doing that waving of the arms and freaking out thing. Since I didn't know the Heimlich and I had never bothered to look closely at the poster that showed how to do it, I took myself out of the equation. Plus, it wasn't my station, so whatever. Well, the man stood up at his table and everyone in the place started to freak the fuck out. People are running around and screaming and yelling. "Call 911!" "Somebody do something!" "Can I please get some more gravy??" He's gagging and gasping for air and the people at his table don't know what to do. Finally, someone at the next table comes to his senses and wraps his arms around the old guy's chest and starts heaving and ho'ing and eventually saves his life. The restaurant applauded the hero who shrugged it off and went back to his meal, no doubt chewing each bite twenty-three times before swallowing. Meanwhile, the old man, excused himself to the men's room to freshen up and wipe off the sweat and gravy from his face. I was surprised that no one from his table went in with him. They all just started eating again like it was no big deal. Maybe they were disappointed that he was okay because they thought they were about to cash in on their inheritance. A while later, Choking Charlie came back out and went to the man who had saved him and shook his hand. It was all very touching and shit. He ended up picking up the tab for the hero and his table and I thought that was pretty cool.

After all was said and done I thought that it was time I take a class on first aid or at the very least look at the poster for choking victims. If this ever happened again, I wanted to be able to take charge of the situation and be the hero and get all the fame and glory. Oh, and save a life too. It occurred to me that as someone who serves food, I should be able to be there for my guest who needs me to reach into his mouth, swipe the airway clean and breathe life back into his body. It was the least I could do and maybe I would get better tips if I informed my tables I was a certified life saver. But I never did it. Shit was too complicated. So if you are ever in my station and piece of hot dog gets lodged in your throat, you are on your own. I ain't got time to be saving no life. I got ketchup bottles to fill.

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Jessica said...

The posters are too complicated anyways. And they don't make sense. Ketchup bottles are way more important.

Queen of the Rant said...

You are never supposed to let a choking victim got to bathroom alone, They will tell you they are fine, and then 90% of them die in the bathroom. Learned that one in first aid!

Alexa O said...

I worked a shift once where a guy started choking like that. His server, my friend, went over and calmly saved his life. The guy never said thank you, and he left my friend a 15% tip.

Can you imagine how hot his afterlife is going to be?

Ann Wilkinson said...

it also works if you turn someone upside down, but they have to smaller than you are. or they have to be four years old. but it works.

The Ranter's Box said...

This just goes to show that we are all pretty much on our own when the shit hits the fan. Thank goodness there was a least one person who stepped in to help the gravy-faced man... This story reminded me about how when back in the day I was a young 'ranter' lifeguard in a popular beach town. Gross, hefty redneck tourists would always come up to me and stupidly ask "Lifeguard, if I drown will you save me?"...To which I would reply "Gee, I don't know how to swim". Dumb asses didn't realize that if they had already drowned then there was no point in me interrupting my sunbathing to fish their dead fat asses out of the water! ;)
-The Ranter's Box

FemgineerFatale said...

As a recent follower, I don't mind the reruns. Respect for still making time to put something up daily!

Manda said...

I think learning the hemlich maneuver is one of those things everyone should know how to do. I try to teach all of my family and friends (if I know how to save your life, you should know how to save mine). Working in restaurants, I have seen someone choking once, while I was in highschol busing tables. The guy coughed up the piece of meat before I could get to him. I hope I never see another person choking again.