Her Quick Thinking Saved My Life!

For years I’ve proclaimed to everyone how wonderful my bride is.two hearts as one

She’s saved me from loneliness, destitution, hunger, the East Coast and memories of countless failed relationships.

Last week she saved me again, with the Heimlich maneuver.

You see, after a pretzel left a dusty trail in my throat, I drank a club soda.

Whoom! The bubbles, reacting with the dust, created a thousand tiny sponges simultaneously expanding in my throat.

I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t even choke.

In my mind I was already writing the police report concluding with “Stupid way to die.”

My bride had other plans, acting fast and saving my life.

During his lifetime, Dr. Henry Heimlich’s signature move saved 100,000+ lives. Mine’s now on the list.

Today I joke about laughing at death, but I’ll admit to being scared.

My bride asked me not to tell this story, but this is unquestionably a teachable moment.

Choking can happen to anyone, anytime.

Cliché? Maybe, but it doesn’t make it any less true.

So how does this tie into a marketing column? Obviously, I can’t just celebrate my life partner’s accomplishment and be done with it.

So consider this scenario: You’re having lunch at work tomorrow and a piece of sandwich catches in your throat. Older readers will remember this is how Mama Cass Elliott purportedly died in 1974 (not true!)

A co-worker with whom you’ve clashed sees you turning blue, your hand at your throat. He steps behind you, performs the Heimlich maneuver, and saves your life.

Your associate wasn’t looking for applause, but to you he is now a hero. Your opinion of this person has gone up several notches. Past disagreements suddenly seem trivial.

The message sent and received was that common decency overcame company politics.

Today we’re swimming through a sea of disagreements, with former friends consistently at each other’s throats over every twitch and tweet coming from the nation’s capital.

And perhaps I’m fantasizing to believe that we’re all decent enough to save the next guy, even if we radically oppose whatever he stands for.

But since at the moment I’m still believing in miracles, give me this one. And if you don’t know how to do the Heimlich maneuver, learn.

Because you could easily save a life tomorrow.

With that said, I wish you a week of stress-free marketing.

Reach the newly optimistic Mr. Marketing at www.askmrmarketing.com.

One comment

  1. Linda McCormick says:

    Thanks to a work place requirement years ago, a team of us had to undergo advanced first aide training and CPR training/certification. I had no idea I would need the info to save my daughters life. We were at our Colorado river camping spot where we have a trailer. My husband and I were out and about when my mommy radar kicked in….you know, when they are too quite? I opened the screen door to find my almost three year old with bulging watering eyes and a completely purple bulging face, gagging. I didn’t even take the steps inside. I was able to reach her from where I was, swing her around pull her close to my body and do the Heimlich. The “lifesaver” candy (ironic right!?) flew across the room (the candy was hidden out of reach but she had still managed to find and try to consume it). It still makes me shutter, and we have never had lifesaver candy in or house since. Besides your marketing advice in regards to this….it’s my personal opinion that EVEYONE should know how to do this, it’s very simple. In an emergency you can even perform it on yourself if no one is around to assist you- but look this up for the how to. Needless to say, even a kitchen counter or chair could save your life. One other thing we learned in our training regarding choking, never let a choking person leave your sight. Some choking people will try to go some place so they are not causing a scene, or they don’t think it could be serious- eventually they could pass out, then you can perform the Heimlich- even if they are on the ground. Again look it up for instructions! Along with boating/water safety, the Heimlich is one of those topics that I never hesitate to share with anyone who will listen. Thanks for letting me share my experience and I am very glad you shared yours and that you are alive to tell the tale! Btw, I read your article on this as always in the Poway Chieftain, keep up the good work. Oh, and tell your bride it’s ok to share the story, you never know when what you learn will help you to save a life; you are both proof of that.