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Saving a life beats saving a job Tom Basinski | Sat, Jul 14 2012 12:00 PM

As parents, we were overjoyed that after our sons graduated from high school they have been low maintenance or no maintenance, a comfort for anyone.

The older boy breezed through high school and Southwestern without cracking a book or taking a note. He retained his same [lack of] study habits when he went up to Humboldt State, flunking out. He was too embarrassed to come home so he stayed in Arcata.

He found work in construction for a jerk of a foreman and unhappily toiled away until he could get back into school. This time he studied, took notes and graduated, finding a job in San Diego where he’s happy.

The younger boy became an emergency medical technician and worked on an ambulance. He moonlighted for a company that provided EMTs for various events like concerts and at the San Diego Convention Center.

He even worked a pro wrestling card where he saw two of the combatants going over their “script” in the tunnel before entering the ring where they snarled and threw fake punches. Those body slams can’t be faked though.

He even worked the male version of the Gay Pride after-party at the Sports Arena. He was told the event would be “over the top,” It was, and then some. He didn’t work that event again.

He worked as an EMT for movie and commercial shoots. He took a month off from the ambulance for the filming of a made-for-TV movie starring the late Dennis Hopper. “The Last Ride” was, without a doubt, the worst movie ever filmed.

During that month the shortest day he worked was 14 hours and the longest was 19 hours. He made a boatload of money.

Movie work was boring and the most he did was hand out sun screen to the crew and Imodium to the leading lady. It was so boring he volunteered to help pack up equipment at the end of the day but was prohibited by union rules. So he stood there, Band Aids and diarrhea medicine at the ready.

Last week at Hallandale Beach, Fla., a young lifeguard named Tomas Lopez left his post to help a swimmer in distress about 100 yards outside of Lopez’s jurisdiction. For his gallantry and dedication to saving lives, Lopez was fired by the private firm that employed him.

Fortunately there was a national outrage over his firing. The company danced and shuffled and spun until their heads almost came off. After the story hit the airwaves the company was the most hated entity in the country. They backtracked, said they acted in haste, and offered Lopez his job back.

Meanwhile, the boys who worked with Lopez all quit in protest. When offered his job back, Lopez showed he had a little gravel in his gizzard and told them, not in these exact words, to take their job and shove it. My guess is that

Lopez is very employable nowadays.

Years ago my EMT son was working near the Gaslamp Quarter for the filming of a car commercial. As in most film endeavors, hundreds of takes are necessary.

A tourist had a heart attack about 50 feet from my son’s post. He told someone to summon paramedics while he gave

CPR to the distressed man. Help soon arrived and the man was transported to the hospital.

The film company fired my son. The owner of the EMT company who booked him with the film company came to his defense to no avail. The film company said they paid him to save the lives of their employees, not some stranger.

My son was apprehensive when telling me he was fired. I told him he did the right thing and to keep on doing the right thing, even if it meant getting fired.

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the weed Says:

Sat, Jul 14 2012 05:53 AM

Well Tom, you did it again.........spun a little personal life with current events and made it intesting. Thanks!


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