Tuesday, 5 February 2008

The epitomy of uselessness

I am such a pillar of society and was useless not once, but twice during my lunchtime trip to Tescos today. Having helped myself to a rather nice selection of goodies for lunch (covent garden leek and potato soup, yum yum) I found myself standing at the till point paying and was just about to make for the exit when this woman faints right in front of me. I always imagined that in this sort of situation, I'd immediately rush to the said person's aid...maybe produce a cold flannal from my bag and a handy (unopened) bottle of Evian, a cushion perhaps, and place the person into the proper 'recovery' position that was taught to me by that age old BBC favourite, 999. (Whatever happened to 999?). But anyway, I didn't - I stood there, Tesco bag in one hand, handbag in the other, mouth gaping open like an enraged goldfish at the scene before me. As other people bent down to try and err, wake her up, comfort her young crying daughter and generally offer useful assistance, I stood there watching for a good...ooh... 3 minutes or so? Wondering what on earth to do, before bumbling off with an 'I'll be on my way, then'.

My uselessness didn't end there. As the security guards attended the scene of the fainting, an opportunist theif no more than about 15 years old scurried past me with a 'fuck it' and a rather bulging zipped up jacket, clearly stuffed full of Tesco-esque goodies. I caught his eye as he went past me at the door, and to let him know that I knew - I stopped, turned round and yep, you guessed it, stared (again) at his unusually bulbus front. As he walked away, he turned around and looked back at me, realising he'd been caught, and I stood there meeting his eyes as he walked a bit faster, continually turning to see if I was either a) chasing him or b) going back in to alert a security guard. I did neither, and thus my uselessness was compounded for the day. Had I been confronted with a fire on re-entering my building and ignored that as well, I would have excelled myself at being rubbish in all three basic Emergency Services tasks on my lunch break.

But I am amusing myself by playing detective. Part of my job is to look after the work experience people, which as you know I used to do here as well. One of them is very unenthused by the whole situation and I have discovered him writing a blog on one of the office computers. Now I reckon blog people think that other people don't get what blogs are, or how to find them, which is probably why he froze when I went to collect something from next to him and clicked his screen away...but I know and recognise the blogger header...and I'm onto him. Expecting something juicy and bitchy I found his blog in about 30 seconds - only to be confronted by a very journalistic and a (slightly dull) round up of today's international news. Damn those sensible world news bloggers. Snooze-arrific or what.

13 comments:

Boy said...

If it's any consolation, I think I'd have been equally useless.
Seriously, what did happen to 999? My fave episode still has to be the one with the javelin through the neck. Everyone saw it. Amazing.

Reluctant Blogger said...

I had forgotten about 999. It was that sort of programme really!

I think most people tend to freeze up in these sort of situations. I would too. It's the do-gooding busybodies you need around to save you when you faint, those with handbags full of smelling salts and little comfy lacy cushions upon which to rest your head.

And no, don't give away any clues. You should be careful about logging on from work too. I know that some companies are very careful to check what sites are being used and it is amazing what can be tracked. I used to live with someone who did just such detective work. So be careful! I only ever log on via my mobile from work.

AFC 30K said...

Having been a first aider for quitre some time I'm used to stuff like that. Car crashes, construction site accidents - all in a day's work for me.

Having said that, It does take practice - one of my first patients was an amputated finger and I just froze, luckly a collegue waded in and took charge...

Bec said...

15 year old opportunist thief was probably carrying something sharp and stabby or cold and fire-y so you absolutely did the right thing by not doing anything. tragic but we all read the news. Mostly on other people's sensible world-news blogs!

Girl Vino said...

Had to LOL at the uselessness of you in those situations! I myself was getting blood taken at the Dr once by a 'professional' nurse. She got my arm all ready, got the needle and proceeded to have some sort of spasmodic episode where her jabbing arm was so uncontrollable she had to hold it down! Fuck me! After ignoring the goings on for AGES I finally said "are you ok?" and she left!!! WTF

London-Lass said...

Jo : Dont feel bad -- I think all of us are different shades of uselessness -- just some of us are able to hide it better. I mean -- did you take a good look at the people crowding in around the fainting female? I bet a lot of them, although they rushed over to her, were just standing around her, boggling, whilst perhaps a coupla people actually did something constructive. I say if you're gonna be useless be useless properly .. so Jo hold your head up high -- at least you were genuinely useless and not pretending to be helpful. Which is worse. MUCH worse.

PS : Any clues?
PPS : (Only joshing)

Miss Understood said...

Standing and staring at the lady on the floor isn't as bad as it sounds. My husband's uncle (all 30 odd stone of him) fainted at the pub a few years ago and his kids stood round in a circle - looking a bit baffled - and kicked him! Poor sod.

weenie said...

I think I would have done the same re the fainting woman.

With the thieving scrote though, gone are the days I would have made a flying rugby tackle at him but I would have said something or alerted security.

I don't get my shopping free so why should anyone else!?

Ella said...

Ah, in this day and age you risk getting shot if you challenge youths.

I would have been equally useless. Last week a woman fell down the escalators on the underground (as in tumbled - ouch) and I kind of just stared at her, thinking about what to do. By the time my thoughts had caught up with me there was a whole crowd around her ...

theperpetualspiral said...

Remind to a) never have a medical emergency near you and b) to let you know if I want to go out shop lifting!

I used to love the added drama of the recreations on 999.

Richard Madeley said...

Hey, come on. We sensible bloggers deserve more respect. There's more to the world than being bitchy. Sometimes there are important matters to discuss.

Steph said...

Don't be so hard on yourself. I'm first aid trained and have had the opportunity to use those skills on two seperate occasions. I chose not to.
Some people are good in a crisis, I'm not one of them. I'd probably end up doing more harm than good.

OneSkinnyGirl said...

Just found your blog and love it!!!!!
Hahahah, I am useless in those situations too.... the worrying thing for me is that I am a nurse..... there is no excuse for my hopelessness.... except that I am a mental health nurse so anything from the neck up is fine.....
Love yer blog baby!!
S X

 

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