Do You Have Any Idea How Expensive Your Laziness Is?!

, , , , , | Healthy | November 10, 2020

I volunteer for my township’s all-volunteer first aid squad. We have a designated crew manning the building during the day to answer any calls, but overnight, the designated crew responds from home via pager. My town and surrounding towns are not very big, so we or other towns sometimes have difficulty putting a crew together. For this reason, we have a “mutual aid” agreement with nearby towns. If we do not have a crew available, another town offers their crew, and vice versa.

Many people misuse the 911 system. They think that arriving at an emergency room by ambulance will mean faster service. It does not. I have literally been to a house in the middle of the night for a stubbed toe. There were four cars in the driveway and five people in the house, any one of whom could have driven the “patient” to the hospital… for the stubbed toe.

On one night shift, my pager goes off to respond to the next town over, which also happens to have the hospital that we take most of our patients to. Bleary-eyed, I drive to my building, meet up with my crew, grab an ambulance, set the GPS, and go off on our way.

Dispatch: “The patient is experiencing urinary retention.”

This can be very painful and dangerous to the kidneys.

And where was the house we ended up at? Across the street from the hospital emergency room entrance. And where was the patient? Sitting on his front porch with a packed bag and quietly reading a book. And how long had it been since he had passed urine? About three hours. Grrrrr!

1 Thumbs
347

Because There Are No People Online?

, , , , | Right | November 7, 2020

Customer: “I’ve been looking for a book and I can’t find it. Could you help?”

Me: “Sure. What’s the title?”

I look it up and we do not have it in stock.

Me: “Unfortunately, we don’t have it and none of our nearby stores do, either. I could order it for you, though.”

Customer: “What does that mean?”

Me: “If you would like, we could place an order and it would arrive here in three to five days for you to pick up.”

Customer: “Oh. Okay, I definitely want the book, so that would be nice.”

Me: “Great, I’ll just need a name and a phone number to contact you when it arrives.”

Customer: “Oh, no. You want my credit card, don’t you?”

Me: “No, you wouldn’t have to pay until the book arrives. That way, if you decide you don’t want it, you aren’t obligated.”

Customer: “I don’t like giving out my credit card information. There are people who do bad things out there.”

Me: “Sure, I understand that. But we really don’t need the credit card number.”

Customer: “I mean, how can I trust that someone won’t just use my credit card? I don’t give my credit card number out to anyone.”

Me: “Honestly, the transaction would be run as usual once the book arrives. Your credit card is not needed unless that’s how you want to pay at the time of purchase.”

The customer thinks about it for a moment.

Customer: “I don’t like the sound of this. I’m just going to order the book online.”

Me: “Well, okay, but you realize that ordering it online would actually require you to enter your credit card information?”

Customer: *Waves dismissively* “Nobody does anything bad online. It’s people you can’t trust!”

1 Thumbs
444

What A Strange Salad

, , , , , , , | Related | November 3, 2020

My uncle is relatively nearsighted. Our two brothers both inherited my dad’s stocky build but my mom’s fair and easily sunburned complexion, while the older brother also inherited Dad’s thick crop of chest and back hair. My sister and my uncle are hanging out on the beach on a family vacation.

Uncle: “I can see your family out there in the water, but I can’t tell which one is which.”

Sister: “Oh, that’s easy.” *Points at youngest brother* “Tomato.” *Points at older brother* “Hairy tomato.” *Points at Dad* “Bear.”

And that is how new family nicknames are born.

1 Thumbs
393

The Scamming Was Bad But Then Things Got Gross

, , , , | Legal | October 24, 2020

I used to volunteer for my township’s all-volunteer first aid squad. Some years prior, we had removed a volunteer for a variety of reasons, including being unfit for duty. Prior to that, when he was still on the squad, he told me an hour-long story about how he was working as an EMT in Manhattan on 9/11. He had my complete attention and sympathy while he told me how he was injured and could not walk inside one of the towers when a policeman came by and carried him out to safety.

Following his removal from the squad, it started coming out that the whole story he told me was a lie and he was scamming foundations and other groups out of money and services. At the time, though, nobody could prove that he was a scam artist. I felt personally affronted, as he had originally had me hook, line, and sinker when he told me his fake story. Because of this, I was very vocal about how I felt about him, and he knew it.

Fast forward several years. It is a Friday night and I am on duty to take calls for an ambulance in my township. The township high school is playing a football game, and since the school requires an ambulance to be stationed at the game, we have a second rig there. Partway through the game, my pager goes off, announcing a call for a stabbing at the game. My crew heads that way. When we arrive, we see that the other ambulance is already on the scene rendering care. Since it would be the responsibility of my ambulance to transport to the hospital, we decide to leave the patient on that ambulance and just switch crews.

I enter the side of the other rig to see the victim receiving care for his wound by the other crew. But who else is there? The scammer! I look him in the eye.

Me: *Calmly* “You can leave my ambulance now.”

Scammer: “I will not. I’ve started rendering care here and I am going to see it through to the end.”

Me: “We have it under control. Exit my ambulance.”

Scammer: “No.”

Me: “You must leave immediately; you are not wanted here.”

He looks down to the floor, picks something up, and throws it at my face. I do not have time to react; we are only five feet apart. The object hits me square in my face and then falls toward my hands, where I catch it. It is only then that I realize it is the bloody shirt from the stabbing victim! And this is in front of three witnesses directly inside the ambulance.

I immediately drop it to the floor and then proceed to lose my cool. I move around the victim on the stretcher toward the scammer/assaulter. I get loud. I am not even sure what I say exactly, but something to the effect of, “How dare he expose my eyes and hands to a bodily fluid?!”

The scammer/assaulter quickly jumps out the back of the ambulance. I follow, still shouting. He runs away. Within five seconds, I realize that a police officer was standing right there taking a witness statement but is now staring at me in surprise, as he has never seen me act this way. I look at him and apologize, telling him that I will talk to him later.

We transported the victim to the hospital and he turned out to be okay. After finishing up with the transport, I called my squad captain to report what had happened. He told me to go directly to the police station and file charges.

Some months later, it was time to go to court for the trial of the scammer/assaulter. He had a lawyer and pleaded guilty. I talked to the prosecutor, who recommended punishment to the judge. I knew there would be no jail time, but I requested the maximum fine, to be earmarked as a donation to the first aid squad. He agreed. So did the judge.

It was some years later that an investigative reporter contacted me. He was looking into the scammer. I happily provided all the information that was known to me. His two-night piece aired a few weeks later, and it 100% exposed the scammer for what he was: a guy taking advantage of a national tragedy for money and sympathy. Now, THAT was sweet justice!

1 Thumbs
592

Many Hands Make Light Work

, , , , , , | Healthy | October 22, 2020

I used to volunteer with my town’s first aid squad. Most of the calls would be relatively minor in nature, but every once in a while, a true life-or-death emergency would occur.

This story occurs on the day of a blizzard with over twelve inches of snow already on the ground. We get a call for chest pain and begin to head toward the house as quickly as is safely possible. As we get onto side streets, a township snow plow meets up with us to plow the road in front of the ambulance.

We arrive at the house to see a driveway on a steep incline that is, of course, covered with snow. We all make our way up without falling and go into the house. We find a patient having a true heart emergency and in need of the hospital immediately. Our team leader takes over.

Team Leader: “[Colleague #1] and [Colleague #2], go get the snow shovels out of the rig and start making a pathway to get [Patient] out. [My Name], get [this equipment], [that equipment], and [other equipment] and bring it inside.

The three of us went outside. The other two started shoveling a pathway while I started grabbing the necessary equipment. As I started carrying it up to the house, a neighbor with a snowblower made his way over and started clearing the snow from the driveway. Suddenly, two more neighbors with snowblowers arrived and joined in the effort. On my second trip outside, I watched as two teenagers with shovels ran over and started clearing off the steps. A moment later, yet another neighbor appeared with a bag of sand and she began to coat the steps & driveway to improve traction.

We were able to get the patient down the driveway, into the ambulance, and safely to the hospital, where he made a full recovery. And my faith in humanity? Restored!


This story is part of our Most Inspirational Of 2020 roundup!

Read the next Most Inspirational Of 2020 roundup story!

Read the Most Inspirational Of 2020 roundup!


This story is part of our Feel Good roundup for October 2020!

Read the next Feel Good roundup story!

Read the Feel Good roundup for October 2020!

1 Thumbs
1,111