Sunday, June 3, 2012

HeartBeat Idol Promises Serious Fun

My mother was an RN. When my brothers and I were growing up it was nice to have someone around who knew what to do when there was a medical emergency. We were boys and like many healthy, active kids we were hard to tie down. Mom was there for all the cuts, wounds and the myriad situations where a decision was required as to whether a doctor visit was in order.

Once a year she would bring a friend home for a week or two to teach us about CPR. Her name was Annie. Yes, it was the Annie the famous CPR training mannequin, and it seemed a requirement to go through this annual refresher with mom so we'd know what to do to save a life if necessary.

A little training helped me to be an asset in one medical emergency when a friend went through a plate glass window at the school. (We were playing football there.) As soon as the glass shattered everyone jumped on their bikes and fled. Except me. I watched the blood squirting from his wrist and saw the muscle sliced through on his arm. Joe turned to me shouting, "You were a Boy Scout! Do something!!!" We whipped off our shirts, wrap the wounds and applied pressure to stop the bleeding. With the bleeding stanched we walked to the nearest house in the neighborhood where an ambulance was called. (These were the days before cell phones.) I never saw so much blood in my life.

All this is setup material on why it is important to support the American Red Cross and others who have so devoted themselves to life-saving.

It must have been four to six weeks ago now that I got the call. I was being asked to be one of 10 celebrity competitors in a karaoke competition as part of a fund raiser for the American Red Cross. I was told that instead of a karaoke machine I would be performing with a live band. Sounded fun to me, especially when I was told they could play anything. I have a few signature crowd-pleasers, so I printed out the lyrics (you can find lyrics for everything these days) and began memorizing Come a Little Bit Closer, Great Balls of Fire and I Shot the Sheriff. I figured I had four weeks to make up my mind.

Then, ten days ago I learned that the list of songs to choose from was far shorter than I had originally been led to believe. But hey, the other contestants would be in the same boat, and as far as I can tell the boat still floats. Plus, it's for a good cause.

The primary goal for this event is to raise money for 200 Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) for area organizations as well as training for 2,000 people in life-saving CPR.

The organization behind all this is HeartBeat Northland, a volunteer partnership of more than a dozen public and private Northland organizations who have banded together to increase awareness about Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA). To achieve this the group conceived of an event that would be fun for everyone who attended. People who buy tickets can win prizes, from a Twin Weekend Getaway to Moondance Jam tickets. There will be a free salad and pizza buffet... and there will be a show. Halftime will include testimonies by three SCA survivors who would not be here today were it not for these kinds of machines and CPR training. There will also be a Silent Auction (we'll find out details tomorrow, I believe) as well.

To give you an idea of how serious this event is, I have to go to a rehearsal tonight. Good heavens. And Tuesday is a full dress rehearsal. I hadn't even thought about a dress, so I'm really not sure what I'll wear yet. For what it's worth, hope to see you there. If my heart ever stops, I'd like to have it happen in the presence of someone who knows what they're doing.

What: Heartbeat Idol
When: Wednesday, June 6, 5:30 till 9:00
Where: Grandma's Sports Garden, Canal Park, Duluth
Why: So that others like Rick Rockwood, Ed Knutson and John Porter will be alive next year to tell their how an AED saved their lives.

I should probably list the celebrities who are performing that night, but you can find that and more information on this event here at HeartBeat Idol.

Featured eBook of the Day: The Breaking Point and Other Stories

No comments: