Annie Are You Okay?

annieThere she is lying motionless on the carpeted floor. The young lady appears to be around twenty years old. Her skin is a pale color. She is a thin lady with straight blond hair that’s rather course. She must be an athlete, because she’s wearing a blue polyester athletic suit – both jacket and pants.

A man nearby tells you the lady’s name is Annie. As you kneel down beside her, you gently shake her and ask her – “Annie Are You OK? So, Annie Are You OK? Are You OK, Annie? Annie Are You OK?”And, there’s no reply.

You lean over with your head turning as you do, so your ear is close by to her nose and mouth. As you listen for her breathing you look for any chest rise. There is none. You encircle her mouth with yours and you blow several times.

Then you place the tips of one of your hands’ fingers upon Annie’s throat and then slide them slightly down her neck. You feel for any faint pulsation. There is none.

You grab the zipper of her jacket and pull it down to discover she’s wearing nothing underneath. You place one of your hands over your other and interlock your fingers. Then your palm is placed on Annie’s chest. With arms straight you push down – repeatedly.

How long you have worked in emergency medical service determines if your first CPR was done on Annie. Your first might have been one with another name, but Annie was the first. And, that might have been why Michael Jackson chose her when he wrote the lyrics for his song “Smooth Criminal.”

As I watched the documentary about Michael Jackson this evening it amazed me the greatness of this man. He studied the greats in every single category that his work touched. And he brought the best of them together to make his magic.

I never knew the key words of “Smooth Criminal” were derived from a training manikin phrase, nor did I know the story of how his music and videos were produced.

With this in mind those of us in emergency service should play this song whenever we train. It could remind us to seek the same greatness in what we do, as did the great Michael Jackson.


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