It’s never a good thing to find a mystery injury on your person. Unfortunately, this is the sort of thing that happens to me all the time: I am awfully clumsy and I am forever doing things like riding my bike in heels and then having elaborate crashes that happen in slow motion, me teetering comically from side to side, and eventually falling right smack on top of the pedals. Usually I just walk it off and forget about it, only to be utterly flummoxed by the huge bruises and scrapes that surface the next day. This means, of course, that the wounds, having been largely ignored, are never cleaned or iced or bandaged–that would require foresight and an instinct for self preservation, two characteristics I exhibit sporadically, at best.
So you can see how finding not only a mystery injury but a bandaged mystery injury would be all the more irregular for me–but that’s what happened when I woke up on the morning after my birthday last year. You know how you wake up really carefully on the morning after a lot of socializing (if, by “socializing,” I mean “consuming ridiculous and unhealthy amounts of liquor”)? You have to creep slowly into consciousness, as if moving too quickly might bring on a headache or nausea that could otherwise be avoided–don’t open your eyes right away, but rather stretch out a bit first, turn over, take inventory of your digestive system. Stomach still there? Intestines? Check and check. A little delicate, maybe, but certainly still there. Liver? OK, no response from the liver yet. Will check back later. You see where I’m going here.
So, by the time I finally got around to opening my eyes on that morning, I was pretty well awake already. Feeling a little stiff and headachy, but nothing too bad or unexpected–until I saw the huge bandage on my left hand. Apparently, the night before, I’d wrapped no fewer than three band-aids around the tip of my middle finger. Why? At that point, your guess would have been as good as mine. I cast my memory back over the night, but couldn’t recall hurting myself.
There had been a round of shots called “blow jobs” at one bar (I think they’d been meant to settle a discussion between the gay men and straight men in attendance, but for the life of me I couldn’t even figure out what they were arguing about at the time, and even if I did I wouldn’t say so here. ANYway…),a couple gin and tonics, and then that which had apparently done me in: an unknown number of tequila shots at another place. When we had walked in, there were already two loud patrons at the bar, knocking back shots and shouting “TWELVE TWELVE, BABY, AW YEAH!”
It turned out that these two strangers (to me and to each other) were also celebrating their birthdays. They quickly recruited me (and I am SO not a joiner, but what can you do?) and the bartender kept giving us free tequila. Let me tell you people: free tequila might SOUND like a good idea, but I have yet to see proof of it ever BEING a good idea. At one point, one of my concelebrants wound up dancing on the bar and mooning everyone. I’m sure this guy would support me in saying that the free tequila? Not a great plan. I’m saying.
So, anyway, that is all fine and good, but it still didn’t explain to me how I had hurt my hand. When I finally got brave enough to take the band-aids off, I found a long, clean gash right down the middle of my fingertip. Looking at it, the memory instantly became clear. A little background (and yet another of my neuroses): I have a habit of plucking leaves off plants and shredding them. Pretty much any time I am in arms’ reach of a plant, I will start to stealthily destroy it. It is not good for me to have idle hands. So, anyway, on the way home, one of my friends stopped in at the Circle K to buy cigarettes. Waiting outside, I had been standing near a holly bush. You can guess the rest: I tipsily grabbed at a leaf and the plant bit back. Damn holly bush!
I suppose the point(s) of the story is(are) this(these):
1. Free tequila–don’t do it.
2. While normally very cavalier about the injuries that result from my usual gracelessness, on this one ridiculously intoxicated occasion, I managed to bandage myself. Does this mean that I should drink more? For my SAFETY? I think so.
3. Also, don’t bike in heels. That was sort of a sub-point, but I thought it was worth repeating.
Case Status: Closed