Dedicated to Paramedics, Fire and Police Officers and their Dispatchers:
I wish you could comprehend a wife's horror at 6 in the morning as I check her husband of 40 years for a pulse and find none. I start CPR anyway, hoping to bring him back, knowing intuitively it is too late. But wanting his wife and family to know everything possible was done to try and save his life.
I wish you knew the unique smell of burning insulation, the taste of soot-filled mucus, the feeling of intense heat through your turnout gear, the sound of flames crackling, the eeriness of being able to see absolutely nothing in dense smoke-sensations that I've become too familiar with.
I wish you could read my mind as I respond to a call. "Is this a false alarm or a working fire? How is the building constructed? What Hazards awaits me? Is anyone trapped?". Or to call and ask what is wrong with the patient? Is it minor or life threatening? Is the caller really in distress or is he waiting for us with a 2x4 or a gun?
I wish you could be in the emergency room, as a doctor pronounces dead, the beautiful five-year old girl that I have been trying to save during the past 25 minutes, knowing she will never go on her first date or say the words, "I love you Mommy", ever again.
I wish you could know the frustration I feel in the cab of the ambulance or engine or cruiser, the driver with his foot pressing down hard on the pedal, my arm tugging again and again at the air horn chain, as you fail to yield the right-of-way at an intersection or in traffic. When you need us however, your first comment upon our arrival will be, "It took you forever to get here!"
I wish you could know my thoughts as I help extricate a girl of teenage years from the remains of her automobile. What if this was my daughter, sister, my girlfriend or a friend? What were her parents reaction going to be when they opened the door to find a police officer with hat in hand?
I wish you could know how it feels to walk in the back door and greet my parents and family, not having the heart to tell them that I nearly did not come back from the last call.
I wish you could know how it feels dispatching officers, firefighters and paramedics out and when we call for them and our heart drops because no one answers back or to here a bone chilling 911 call of a child or wife needing assistance.
I wish you could feel the hurt as people verbally and sometimes physically abuse us or belittle what we do, or as they express their attitudes of "It will never happen to me".
I wish you could realize the physical, emotional and mental drain of missed meals, lost sleep and forgone social activities, in addition to all the tragedy my eyes have seen.
I wish you could know the brotherhood and self-satisfaction of helping save a life or preserving someone's property, or being able to be there in time of crisis, or creating order from total chaos.
I wish you could understand what it feels like to have a little boy tugging at your arm and asking, "Is my Mommy okay?", not even being able to look in his eyes without tears from your own and not knowing what to say. Or to have to hold back a long time friend who watches his buddy having CPR done on him as they take him away in the Medic Unit. You know all along he did not have his seat belt on. A sensation that I have become too familiar with.
Unless you have lived with this kind of life, you will never truly understand or appreciate who I am, we are, or what our job really means to us...I wish you could though.
PLEASE APPRECIATE AND SUPPORT THE LOCAL EMS PARAMEDICS, 911 DISPATCHERS, FIREFIGHTERS, and LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS IN YOUR AREA. ONE DAY THEY'LL PROBABLY BE SAVING YOUR PROPERTY OR YOUR OWN LIFE. WHEN YOU SEE THEM COMING WITH LIGHTS FLASHING, MOVE OUT OF THE WAY QUICKLY, and THEN PLEASE PRAY FOR THEM!
If you had purchased $1000.00 of Nortel stock three years ago, it would now be worth $49.00.
With Enron, you would have had $16.50 left of the original $1000.00.
WorldCom, you would have less than $5.00 left.
But if over the last three years you had purchased $1000.00 worth of beer, drank all the beer, then returned the cans or bottles for your refund you would have $614.00.
So based on the above, the best current investment advice is to drink heavily and recycle.
A guy goes to the supermarket and notices an attractive woman waving at him. She says hello.
He's rather taken a back because he can't place where he knows her from. So he says, "Do you know me?"
To which she replies, "I think you're the father of one of my kids."
Now his mind travels back to the only time he has ever been unfaithful to his wife and says, "My God, are you the stripper from my bachelor party that I had sex with on the pool table with all my buddies watching while your partner whipped my butt with wet celery???"
At a morning press conference, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said he believes the man is a member of the notorious Al-gebra movement.
He did not identify the man, who has been charged by the FBI with carrying weapons of math instruction. "Al-gebra is a problem for us," Gonzales said.
"They desire solutions by means and extremes, and sometimes go off on tangents in a search of absolute values. They use secret code names like 'x' and 'y' and refer to themselves as 'unknowns', but we have determined they belong to a common denominator of the axis of medieval with co-ordinates in every country.
As the Greek philanderer Isosceles used to say: 'There are three sides to every triangle."
When asked to comment on the arrest, President Bush said, "If God had wanted us to have better weapons of math instruction, He would have given us more fingers and toes."
White House aides told reporters they could not recall a more intelligent or profound statement by the president.