Eden M. Kennedy

mission accomplished, pal

Eden M. Kennedy is the co-author (with Alice Bradley) of the book Let's Panic About Babies! (St. Martin's Press, 2011).

A former college-radio DJ, Mrs. Kennedy has driven cross-country six times in a 1973 Volkswagen Bug and enjoys standing on her head.

Currently she works at a nonprofit and is just about finished writing her first novel.

I brought a dozen doughnuts to our job site CPR training. This is a teeny bit like passing around cough syrup at a N.A. meeting. You just don't offer bags full of colorful, artery-clogging goodness to people trying to learn how to save each other from heart attacks.

The second thing I learned was what to do if someone has a pencil sticking out of their eye.

1. Tear the lip off of a Styrofoam cup until the cup is about an inch tall

2. Punch a hole in the bottom of the cup

3. Position the cup over the person's eye so the pencil comes through the hole in the bottom of the cup

4. Wrap or tape the cup securely

5. And while you're at it, wrap or tape the other eye, because the eyes move together, and if you leave one eye unwrapped, every time someone says "Hey! Pokey!" the guy with the pencil in his eye will move his unwrapped eye to look, and you know how your eyes usually move together? The eye with the pencil in it will move, too.

6. *shudder*

7. Cup both your hands over your own (open) eyes and count to ten and listen to how strange your voice sounds

8. Sit there with your hands cupped over your eyes long after the instructor has moved on to another topic, and then remove them abruptly and look around to see if anyone noticed how you were stimming on the ambient noises of your cement-floored office

Also, if you get bit by a snake? Not just a little half-circle vegetarian snake jaw-print on your arm, but actual fang holes? Don't do that late-night TV western thing where you slice the skin above the wound and suck out the poison. Because then you'll have snake venom in your mouth. Where it will be absorbed into your system with breathtaking efficiency. And no tourniquets, unless you're one of those people who looks forward to an amputated limb. If you're not one of those people, just circle the bite marks and note the time with a ballpoint pen on your skin and call 9*1*1*.

Then save the ballpoint pen in case you need to give someone a tracheotomy.