Monday, March 25, 2013

Time wounds all ... fingers?

We have yellow jackets living in the roof tiles at the house.  We see them in the summer, especially in the afternoon when the sun is hot on the roof.  They like hot weather.  It makes them frisky.  In the winter they are slow and dopey.  They fall on the floor and walk around, they can't fly, and they clearly are waiting for warmer weather.

Unfortunately they don't die in the winter.  They do like to crawl into tight spaces and ride the winter out in some sort of comfort.  I always shake our my bicycle gear in the garage before putting on my shoes, or helmet.  You never know...

So, you think I might have been just a little cautious when I put on the left handed glove I keep on the gas grill that I use to hold oysters to shuck them when I grill them.  NO, I didn't.  And last night when I pulled it on there was a moment when I didn't really understand why my middle finger was feeling odd - a sort of stinging, like maybe a blackberry thorn was inside.  Then it got more acute, and I understood I was under ATTACK!  I pulled my hand out, and a now-squished yellow jacket fell to the deck.  The damage was done.  I iced my finger and all seemed well.  It was fine overnight, and didn't really bother me.  Until the flight today from Seattle to Portland, Maine. My finger is now quite swollen and a bruise is apparent.  The effect is limited to the joint that has the fingernail, and just a bit into the one behind it, but it is definitely affected.  My typing seems to be OK, and it doesn't really hurt, but I notice it.  OK, it hurts a bit.

On Saturday I played golf in Port Townsend.  On the first hole my ball landed in the fairway (yes, it happens once in a while) but I could not tell how far I was from the green.  Often they mark sprinklers with the distance, so I leaned over to have a look at one that was close by.  It was covered in grass clippings, so I used my right hand to wipe away the grass, and YIKES!  The sprinkler had been chopped by the lawn mower which had left a razor sharp shard sticking up!  It sliced my middle finger and the blood shot out in profusion.  It hurt like an SOB, but the leakage was the real problem. Fortunately I carry a red golf towel on my bag, so it didn't look like I was so badly injured as I played on (you didn't think I would stop, do you?).  It stopped bleeding after a few holes anyway.  And you can always wash a towel but you can't always play golf!

So, here I sit on Monday night.  The middle fingers on both hands are messed up.  One is swollen, and one is healing a scarred side.

I thought this shit was supposed to slow down as we aged...