Yesterday, for the first time in all my days, I cracked open a chicken's egg from the grocery store (a non-organic, factory farmed, 18-to-a-carton, supposedly non-fertilized egg) and out came a yellow yolk swirling in blood. Blood, my friends. The first thing I thought was, "Oh, it's fertilized, hm." The second thing I thought was, "Wait, what would a rooster be doing in an egg-laying situation?" Commercially, chickens are either bred for meat or bred to lay eggs and there isn't much use for a male from the egg-layer breed so they're usually culled (euphemism for gassed or macerated! Let's all be vegans now). My third thought was, "Oh, maybe this is a cancer egg." Like, Oh there's a bloody tumor in my egg, I guess I will wash it down the drain and get a new one so I don't catch the cancer.
NOT COOL, MAN
Let me tell you a story about the healing power that resides in the common ice cube. Over the weekend I was pulling a sheet of sweet potato fries out of the oven and the dish towel I was using to protect my hand slipped. It just fell onto the oven door and I had that weird moment of unprotected forward momentum vs. OH SHIT. Unfortunately, it was too late for the pad of my left middle finger which, after getting a nice, firm handshake from the 450°F baking sheet, became red and oddly wrinkly, like it had spent too long in a hot bath. I ran some cold water over it right away but yeah, no. So I put an ice cube in our last remaining unbroken espresso cup and I pressed down on the ice and watched the heat from my finger melt it into a U-shape. Then I got another cube and did it again. Jack, who got his Ph.D. from Suck It Up University, was all, Yeah, but I've got a lot happening on the grill at the moment and I still need you to make a salad. So I set the table and made a salad with one hand in an espresso cup, and spent the rest of the night taking my finger out of the cup and then going, Nope, it's still on fire. After four hours of ice it was okay again, but I despair for those who burnt themselves in the days before refrigeration and who got their parts slathered in butter or lard or some such. And for people whose grandmothers still haunt them into handling small burns that way and infecting the shit out of themselves.
ICE ICE BABY
Then! I had an incident yesterday where I was carrying a three-gallon glass bottle full of water -- so, 25 pounds of water, plus around 8 for the bottle -- and my ankle turned. I was wearing an old pair of Dansko clogs on badly patched asphalt. (Although, believe me, I can fall off of a flip flop. It's a gift.) My ankle was fine but I completely lost my balance and I had to make one of those split-second decisions: drop the bottle, or not? A girl in my co-op in college once dropped a glass water pitcher and a huge shard of it ended up wedged in the top of her foot. I wasn't thinking of her at that very second, but I guess I had thought enough about her in the past to have processed Big Chunk Of Glass In Foot. It wasn't one of those times where everything goes in slow motion -- if anything, time sped up, because the next instant I had brought my full weight plus the 33 pounds I was carrying bang! down on my knees on the crumbly asphalt.
I put the bottle down and tried to stand up, but since I was just about to pass out I decided to sit on the hood of my car while two guys who saw the whole thing happen came up and asked me if I was okay. I reassured them that I was fine, and then I seriously forgot who I was for a minute. One guy offered to put the bottle in my car, and I was all, "Sure! Just ignore the bulldog in the back who is losing his mind barking." Then I was all, "Well this is a great time to operate heavy machinery," because I still had to drive a few more miles to pick up Jackson from his day camp. I felt around my knees with my hands -- they were a little sore, but I'd managed to come straight down on them equally and hadn't heard anything crack or pop -- so I started my car and drove away, like an insane person. The moral of this story is that I got us all home just fine and then I sat with my feet up and two Ziploc bags of ice on my knees and played Angry Birds Star Wars like it was my job for the next hour, and then I drank five glasses of wine.
WHAT WERE WE TALKING ABOUT?
I took Jackson and one of his good friends to Legoland and the San Diego Zoo last week as an early birthday present. The second night at the Legoland Hotel (which has the nicest staff on earth, there just aren't enough of them. Valet parking was free, but then it took them an hour to get my car. I could see it from the lobby, so eventually I was all, "Can you just give me the keys and I'll get it myself?" and the cute, sweaty valet staff was all, "Sure! We're so sorry," and I was all, "Don't you worry your pretty little head about it," and they were all, "Is there anything else we can do for you?" and I was all, "I'm in room 1044. I'll send the kids to the pool.")
Right, so the second night they were showing some Bionicle movie on a screen by the pool. The pool was pretty shallow, and Jackson misjudged the depth and jumped in and banged his heel on the bottom. There were tears. The lifeguard got him an ice pack and felt for broken bones, swelling, etc. (all clear), and I cuddled him up on a day bed and we watched the movie (which, thanks, Lego, for writing one of the four Bionicle warriors as a girl who kicked ass, made jokes, and didn't need to be saved). Afterward, he limped over to thank the lifeguard (heart: melted) and then he said to me, "I'm not cold but I can't stop shaking." I'd read something recently about how the body will process trauma by trembling, and how it's useful and not something to suppress, so I didn't worry too much, I just bundled him up and kept an eye on him and he stopped after a minute or two.
Foot injury is not optimal the day before you planned to walk 5.8 million miles through the San Diego Zoo, but he said he said he could do it so off we went. He was limping after lunch, though, so I said fuck it and rented a wheelchair for $12. He loved it until he was confronted with his first curb. It was a good lesson in not taking your mobility for granted.
This post is way too long so I will wrap it up with KOALAS AND WOMBATS, HELP ME I AM DEAD FROM UNREQUITED CUDDLE SYNDROME.
It's hell being nocturnal, isn't it Mr. Cuddles.