But first things first. In my last installment I indicated that I could probably cling wrap and tape my cast without assistance. Today I put that notion to the test and successfully pulled it off. I quickly learned how to trap the roll between my body and the arm in the cast long enough to get the first lap of cling wrap to self-stick and behave itself. Applying the tape to the ends of the wrap was a little tricky but doable. Chalk up one up for the gimpster. After showering I cut off the wrap and stepped up to the mirror for the next event in today's sporting challenge: the 200 meter free-style shaving event w/Barbasol. I lathered up cheeks, neck and chin, picked up my trusty Gillette, looked squarely into the mirror and started channeling my inner six year old: "this time you'll only be penalized if you screw up, not if you succeed, grasshopper". After a few cautious, exploratory strokes I realized that I could do this--in fact my left handed shave was better than the one the reluctant barber gave me the other day with two hands. Notch up another small victory for old gimp-meister.
Now before I leave you with the mistaken impression that life is a bowl of cherries for a guy in a cast, let us take a look at a few of those things which although simple and generally taken for granted by healthy individuals possessing two fully functional hands, are either a bit of a struggle or are out of reach for me right now:
Ten things which I can do independently but with some difficultly:
1. doing/undoing shirt buttons
2. tucking shirt tails neatly into jeans
3. zipping and buttoning jeans (bonus artistic interpretation points awarded if shirt tail remains tucked during this bronze level "move")
4. tying shoes, buckling my watch band and similar motions that involve pulling with the right or both hands (these hurt, not enough to prevent the action but enough to get my attention--my right arm hates it and tells me so)
5. showering (including cast protective steps)
7. using a knife to cut bread, bagels, etc. (a struggle but I CAN do this, damn it)
8.grinding coffee beans then adding a filter, the fresh grounds and water to the coffee maker--very big
9. self-feeding (as long as involved use of knife + fork are avoided)
10. driving an automatic shift car to work and other nearby destinations
Ten things which have escaped me
1. wearing most coats, long sleeved shirts or pull overs--I'm thankful I didn't do this in the dead of winter
2. pulling on gloves in the lab--I'm pretty useless at the lab; right now I'm mainly providing answers to colleague's questions regarding techniques, etc. and doing paperwork, reading and so on. My job requires a great deal of "hands on" tasks. I'll have one hellva backlog once the cast comes off
3. lifting anything requiring two hands/arms e.g. a boat from the ground to car roof racks
4. riding a bike (can't shift the derailleurs, can only use one brake--maybe I'll look into a "fixie"[a single speed, track-style bike with no brakes, shiftable gears or free wheel]--I've always wanted to be a hipster)
5. sailing small race boats--with an arm in a cast this would be suicidal in any sort of breeze
6. using a manual can opener, even cans of things, like sardines, with pull tabs are a struggle
7. skating--couldn't pull on the boots if my life depended on it, let alone tie them anywhere near tight enough
8. use a cork screw--this is a huge reduction in the quality of life dept!
8a. use a beer opener--ditto re: nr 8, although I've discovered that I can manager "handicap" bottles (twist offs) although the contents of those bottles are seldom worth the effort
9. use a knife to spread thick condiments like peanut butter
10 reading books--I can do this for short while as long as the book isn't too large or heavy, but even small books require a lot of patience with page turning. I try to remember to note the page I'm on before attempting the page turn in the very likely event that I'll loose control of the book--most annoying!
Well, I'm all washed up, shaved and fresh as a daisy. Diaristwoman sings in choir at the 10 o'clock service. She watched me while I dressed this morning and said "I don't want to hear any reports of snarky comments directed at the other parishioners--they mean well." Moi? Snarky? What makes her say these things? After the n-th person comes over and says "Gee, did you break yer arm then?" what's a man supposed to do? I'm tempted to tell them that I'm trying out different themes for next Halloween, or hey, this is more timely--I'll say that I was wrestling with one of the wee people over his pot and just as it was about to fall into me grasp he whacked my arm with his shalali and as soon as he did both he and the pot disappeared, leavin' me with this busted flipper, don't cha known?
|(the pot at the end of the rainbow)|