Three important messages:
- when we cook, it’s nearly always enough to serve four people – but we’re greedy so normally eat three servings and save the last serving for picking at when we tidy up the kitchen. Unless I say otherwise, assume the recipe serves four;
- I’m going to stop using that little recipe plug-in I brought in because the good folks who get this post by email no longer receive the recipe – and we can’t be having that – don’t say I don’t listen; and
- if you comment on the blog via Facebook, that is brilliant as it means more publicity, but I don’t get a notification so don’t worry if it takes me a while to respond! What it does mean however is that other people can help you if you have a question, and isn’t that just lovely?
Here, what a day. It’s been a dreadful day today for someone who dislikes a) people and b) being the centre of attention. See, I’m one of the first aiders at work, which generally means I get to have a big important first aid box full of plasters and the exciting knowledge of everyone’s intimate maladies. It’s a very responsible position indeed, with matters that are nothing less than life or death – do I issue a corn plaster or a waterproof plaster? Do I check NHS Direct via phone OR online? Do I hide in the toilets until another first aider is found? PRESSURE.
The downside of this responsibility is that I have to attend refresher courses on what to do in the case of an emergency – which to my mind is an easy enough question – flap, wave my arms around dramatically and call 999, although I’m told that’s overkill if someone splashes a bit of hot water from the coffee machine across their hand. I can’t bear these type of ‘events’, I really can’t. I spend so long worrying about whether I’m going to get picked to ‘demonstrate’ that I only just take the information in. It’s hard to concentrate when you’ve got forty factory-workers angrily staring at you and criticising your soft office shoes as an ex-ambulance driver tries to put your arm in a sling.
There’s only one scenario where I’d enjoy being helped into a sling and I’d be disappointed if that occurred in a 20 minute refresher.
I’ve mentioned before about my personal space issues – if anyone comes within 3ft of me my shoulders go up and my head disappears into my shoulders like a tortoise with anxiety – so people tumbling me around the carpet and trying to get my body into a recovery position is my idea of a living hell. Plus, there’s the added pressure of trying not to break wind as my right thigh is hoiked into the air with the gentle touch of an abattoir-worker and having to kneel down in front of everyone to practice CPR on a dummy that looks like a boiled ham with a crudely drawn crayoning of Sharon Osbourne’s face plastered on it.
Of course, I immediately managed to embarrass myself by nipping to the gents for a couple of minutes before the class started, only to find on my return that everyone had left the lobby and decamped into one of the meeting rooms. I peered through the window and sensed some familiarity amongst the bald heads and let myself into the room, having to cross it to get to the only spare seat, whispering apologies and ‘oh silly me’ faces a-plenty. Ten minutes into the lecture on how to safely lift boxes in a packing facility I realised my mistake and had to walk back across the classroom with everyone’s eyes burning into me. I’m surprised my hair didn’t catch. I found a chair in the other class and glowed with embarrassment.
The three hours passed fairly quickly, although of course I was chosen almost immediately as an example of oxygen deprivation, giving the scenario of ‘If I held a pillow over James’ face, it would take four minutes for his brain to start dying’. Typical. Half an hour in and he’s got me pegged as a pillow-biter.
Giving CPR presented a challenge, not least because I was picked to ‘build’ the dummy to practice on in front of the entire class. Social anxiety coupled with someone telling you to ‘pick a face out of the box’ and ‘turn it inside out, clip his ears onto the dummy’ makes for a very challenging ten minutes. I can’t build tension, let alone a fucking latex approximation of some chisel-jawed corpse whilst twenty people stare down at me as I fumble around his plastic lips. It gets better – I then had to demonstrate how to pump the chest (30 presses, hand over hand, between the nips) which meant a good minute of me pistoning up and down, more than likely with the top of my arsecheeks peeping out over my belt in an accusatory manner. Didn’t get any less awkward when someone else took over, because then I had someone’s arse backing into my face as they tried to bring the dummy back to life.
I also made the mistake of asking the teacher some basic tips on how to deal with any possible emergency arising from having a pregnant lady in the office. Well look, I think it’s better to be prepared, and it’s not like I have an intimate understanding of how it all happens. For all I know, it might ding like a microwave, the flaps swinging open like the prize-doors on Bullseye and a baby comes swooshing out like its on a log flume. Well, clearly taken with the fact that someone had actually asked a question, he addressed the whole process of giving birth in blistering detail. I was enthralled. I could tell everyone else was seething because they wanted to be away but I can honestly say I now feel confident delivering a baby. It sounds marvellous – sacks of fluid bursting, feet wriggling out, placentas sloshing out like the sponge in a car-wash – you just need Melanie and Martina and you’d have a brilliant Fun House round.
Ah well. At least I’m trained up if anyone faints, burns themselves, does a Jim Robinson or strokes out. That feels good. And, although I’ve been my usually sassy self about the whole thing, these First Aid courses are amazing. I learn a lot and the presenters are always fantastic. Considering my medical experience begins and ends at being scared of the 999 theme tune, the fact they manage to hold my interest for so long is testament to how good they are. Great work.
Seriously though, click this and tell me that this isn’t a bloody frightening theme tune. It’ll open in a separate window. I used to have genuine nightmares about that. Though not as much as The Outer Limits. Yikes.
Speaking of nightmares, there was no excuse for this box of horrors that I had to use to prop up someone’s legs as I demonstrated the ‘shock position’.
Eurgh. I put Paul in the shock position once. I used Durex Heat instead of Durex Tingle. Poor love had to pop a blue raspberry ice-pop in afterwards to fix his nipsy.
Speaking of hot, smoky flavours – here’s a recipe for cafe mocha overnight oats – or chocolate coffee oats. That’s C-O-F-F-E-E. Oh yes sir boss like the drink! Hmm. This will make one jar for the morning.
you’ll be needing these to make cafe mocha overnight oats:
- 40g of Quaker or store-brand oats – we use Quaker because they make a good consistency
- 1 Muller Yoghurt vanilla with chocolate sprinkles
- 1 banana (now, if you’re sensible, mash it in a bowl like a normal person, but if you’re Captain Anal when it comes to tweaking, smash it up in your teeth and then spit it into the jar, because you know, that makes a difference to the syns…well maybe if you’re a fucking sparrow)
- a good cup of instant coffee, stronger the better
you’ll need to do this to make cafe mocha overnight oats:
- mix up your oats with the yoghurt and put into the jar
- top with the mashed banana
- take your cup of instant coffee and dribble a tablespoon or two into the jar
- top with a few granules of coffee
- mix it all together like a bad-ass and put it in the fridge to enjoy in the morning.
You can make this just as strong as you like. The banana adds a bit of sweetness, the coffee adds a pick-me-up. Better made with decent coffee mind, a cup of Mellow Birds isn’t going to cut the mustard!