By Kevin Hazzard
A former paramedic’s visceral, poignant, and mordantly humorous account of a decade spent on Atlanta’s suggest streets saving lives and connecting with the drama and low good looks that lies inside of catastrophe.
In the aftermath of Sept. 11 Kevin Hazzard felt that anything used to be lacking from his life—his days have been too secure, too regimen. A failed salesman became neighborhood reporter, he desired to try out himself, see how he could reply to strain and possibility. He signed up for emergency clinical education and have become, at age twenty-six, a newly minted EMT operating calls within the worst sections of Atlanta. His existence entered a distinct realm—one of blood, violence, and awesome grace.
Thoroughly intimidated at the start and often terrified, he skilled on a nightly foundation the adrenaline rush of strolling into chaos. yet in his downtime, Kevin mirrored on how people’s facades drop away whilst disaster moves. As his hours at the task piled up, he discovered he was once commencing to see into the reality of items. there isn't any pretense 5 beats right into a chest compression, or in an alley subsequent to a crack den, or on a dimly lit road the place autos have collided. finally, what had firstly appeared very unlikely occurred: Kevin received mastery. And within the procedure he was once capable of determine the pro variations among his freewheeling friends, what marked each—as he termed them—as “a tourist,” “true believer,” or “killer.”
Combining indelible scenes that remind us of life’s fragile good looks with laugh-out-loud moments that continue us smiling in the course of the worst, A Thousand bare Strangers is an soaking up examine one man’s trip of self-discovery—a journey that still teaches us approximately ourselves.
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Additional info for A Thousand Naked Strangers: A Paramedic’s Wild Ride to the Edge and Back
I turned, and you can imagine my surprise when I saw the stewardess, with her outstretched palm, asking for money. “But I didn’t order a drink,” I told her. “It was right there,” she demanded. ” Yet there was no drink there. I had not seen a drink. A bottle. Nothing. Yet she insisted she had seen it with such determination, it was scary. “I saw nothing,” I told her. ” Then my neighbor was awakened by the discussion and she, too, weighed in on the situation. She chimed in that she had seen it as well.
Which brings me to the art of shaving. I find that shaving is a very complicated job that requires the steadiest of hands. It’s ironic, that my hands can hold a paintbrush without a tremor, yet when I bring a blade up to the side of my beard, my digits shake with terror. It’s amazing to watch, as the hand holding said blade jerks back and forth as if it has a mind of its own. It has often made it hard to shave my beard, and one of the reasons I leave it intact. This week, however, I plan on shaving my beard completely off—and trimming my sideburns from next to my ears.
Yes, I often spend the daylight hours simply drafting our course, making sure we’re staying the course, rechecking the course again, announcing to others that yes, we’re still on course and then making lists of alternative names for the Niña. Here are some that I have come up with over the last twenty days that, I believe, instill respect, honor and fear into those who might come across our bow. Serpiente (or, Snake) Tiburón (or, Shark) Astilla (or, Splinter) Evil Wooden Ship of Death Really Bad Evil Wooden Ship of Death (emphasize the “Really Bad” part) So Bad You Can’t Even Imagine, Evil Wooden Ship of Death With limited food and water (as we are working with rations) I find that my mind is not as sharp as usual, but I do believe that one of the “Wooden Ship of Death” titles would far surpass the silly Niña naming scheme, as we are not little girls but grown men.
A Thousand Naked Strangers: A Paramedic’s Wild Ride to the Edge and Back by Kevin Hazzard