Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Whole World's A Stage

The Whole World's A Stage

It is day one of a four day First Aid Course.

I am here because it has been decreed that my propensity to be there when people decide to faint or throw up makes it beneficial for all concerned that I get some formal qualification. How far this will help the vomiting children thing I do not know; they will still eat too many sweets, they will still throw up and it will still have to be cleaned up (though, because it is a perk of now having an office, probably not by me any more). But I cannot deny the use it will be to me next time I get drunk and fall over. And they're providing a free lunch. As a rule I only go on courses when there is going to be food.

Our table has been charged with producing a poster and talk on the treatment of minor burns. For the talk we have been told to use our imaginations. This is probably not something I have to be asked twice about.

"I'm thinking performance art". I say this with a smile to indicate that I am, at least partially, joking.

"Like pouring water?"

"Yes, we should use props - water, gloves, bandages". I am warming to my theme. "Do we have anything fluffy so we can show what not to bandage burns in?"

We collect our props, which come to include a fluffy hat, plastic sandwich wrap and some toilet paper. My joy is obvious, especially when I run to the toilet to get the loo roll.

"You love this sort of thing, don't you?" says Vintage Queen.

There is no denial that can be made.

"Our prop and sound people need to be behind the flip chart - the audience only needs to see your hands. And everyone else - arranged in a triangular formation so it's aesthetically pleasing".

I catch my words for a second as I martial the troops.

There's a pause before one of my tablemates speaks.

"You can tell you work in a theatre".

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