Dangerspouse Rides Again

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Garage - Track

Jun. 19, 2014 - 8:00 p.m.

Armed and Dangerspouse

Well, I'm back. Or my left half is, anyway. Everything to the right of my sternum is still MIA. Please read this entry slowly, as that's how I had to type it.

Until this past weekend my right elbow was locked at a 90 degree angle and held sideways by a titanium and Kevlar robocop contraption that made it look like I was perpetually spoiling for an arm wrestling match. I spent at least 23 hours of each day - no joke - sitting in a recliner while a pump circulated ice water through a sleeve under the cast. I could unhook to pee, but that was about it. Well, other than a once a week left-side-only shower, itself was an interesting logistical task.

I still can't use my right arm, but at least on Sunday they disconnected the ice bath and activated a hinge in the cast that lets me pump my arm up and down suggestively. In two weeks they'll take the whole thing off and I get to start god knows how many weeks of physical therapy. After which I should be able to resume beating my wife with the intensity she requires. That can't come too soon.

In the meantime, now that I'm not tethered to the recliner I've been puttering around the house seeing if I can destroy things with my left arm as efficiently as I can with both.

The results so far:

Things I absolutely cannot do with one arm in a shoulder-to-fingernail cast that can't get wet:

* Floss.

* Shower thoroughly enough to fool anyone into thinking I'd taken a shower.

* Get even a simple goddam blowjob, apparently. (See above.)

* Open a jar of olives.

* Open PAIN MED BOTTLES THAT COME WITH A CHILDPROOF CAP. The second night after surgery I needed a Percoset BAD and NOW. But NewWifey(tm) was on a beer run, and I was left looking at instructions to "Press Down Firmly, Twist Right, then Lift While Twisting Left". But if I could Press Down Firmly, Twist Right, then Lift While Twisting Left, I WOULDN'T HAVE NEEDED THE GODDAM PAIN PILLS. I ended up smashing the bottle with a hammer then scrambling around on my hands and knees gathering up the resulting wreckage, Trainspotting style.

* Keep a determined cat off my lap.

* Muster sympathy for the less fortunate.

Things I managed to do, but not to a degree that would normally be considered acceptable:

* Wipe.

* Tie shoelaces.

* Chop an onion.

* Type.

* Pull ticks off my cat. Then my leg. Then my scalp. Then Little Elvis.

Things I've been able to do with surprising ease:

* Cram pizza slices and a beer into a VitaMix for a quick and nutritious dinner. That doesn't need utensils!

* Take care of myself in lieu of those blowjobs. Yeah, going lefty made it feel like I was cheating. But that just added to the thrill.

A few general observations:

1. Proprioception is a bitch. I've bumped into more things because I'm wider than normal than Honey BooBoo's mom. Bumped, and sent crashing over. Did you know a floor standing fan can shatter?

2. Speaking of, I now know who Honey BooBoo's mom is. And I'm not happy about it. I don't have a laptop. I don't have a smartphone. I couldn't sit in the chair at my PC. That left my tv. So for the 4 weeks I was epoxied to that recliner it was my only distraction. If the programming I saw is reflective of America's values, we're doomed. Have you seen "Toddlers and Tiaras"? Parents dress their pre-pubescent spawn in floss-kinis, force them to mime gross parodies of adult sexual behaviors, then tell them they're worthless if they didn't gyrate their 13-14-13 frame hard enough to make the judges want to fuck them. I'm a devout atheist and I think that's immoral.

And who the hell first thought a reality show about the Amish would be a good idea? Amish! Have you ever hung out with Amish folk? I have. Sure, they've got that whole "pie with every meal" thing going for them. And if you ever decide to make good on your vow to build a barn without using power tools or women you won't find a more qualified bunch of helpers. But fodder for riveting television drama? Their horses are more compelling characters.

(BTW, NewWifey(tm) is now afraid of any body of fresh water larger than our bathtub thanks to "Monsters Inside Me", a show about parasites. She's also scared of Costa Rica, all of Africa, undercooked bear meat, and the South Asian botfly. I tried reassuring her that our future travel plans don't include anything farther than Hoboken, botflies can't get travel visas to the US since 9/11, and any fresh bear meat I came across will be cooked to at least 170 internal degrees. But she still shakes me awake at night to ask, "You haven't ever eaten catfish sushi in Equatorial Guinea, have you? Have you?" Ah, the power of the media....)

3. My marriage is built on a foundation of lies.

Thirteen years ago this month NewWifey(tm) and I exchanged vows in front of loving friends and skeptical family. So it was thirteen years ago this month that NewWifey(tm) publicly proclaimed that she was never, ever going to cook another meal for the rest of her life. "I can't cook" she bellow/whined during a toast. "I don't want to poison my new husband!" And I've gotta hand it to her, she's been as good as her word.

Up til now.

Two weeks into my recovery we finally finished the last of the dishes I'd pre-made and stuck in the freezer. There was nothing left to eat. So NewWifey(tm) drove to the BigLots store in Middletown and came back with a case of Totino's frozen mini pizza rolls and four boxes of Fruit Rollups. She served them every meal for six straight days before throwing in the towel.

On the seventh day she carried our dinner out to the recliner and set a dish on my lap.

"What the hell is this?" I asked.

"Eggplant lasagna" she said. "Just shut up and eat it."

"Eggplant lasagna?" I looked down at the plate. It looked like it had been PhotoShopped, it was so perfect. I took a taste. "Oh my god. This is the best eggplant lasagna I've ever had! Where did you get it?"


"Seriously honey, where did you find this? You've gotta go back and get more!"

She sighed.

"...I made it."

"You...you made this? But I thought you couldn't cook."

She grimly kept her gaze fixed on her own plate. "I can't" she said. "I just threw some stuff in a baking dish and it happened to come out like eggplant lasagna. Don't get the stupid idea that I'm going to start making food now just because I got lucky once."

But it was too late. Her cover was blown. That "stuff in a baking dish" was just too well made. Bands of sausage and ricotta were layered between hand-cut eggplant 'noodles', then bound with bechemel and tomato sauces and topped with mozzarella and fresh basil leaves. It was baked to perfection.

I can only come to one conclusion.

My wife is a dirty liar.

All these years it's not been that she can't cook. She just doesn't want to. And if NewWifey(tm) doesn't want to do something, she's damn well not gonna do it. Even if it means making a sham of her marriage.

Of course, she insisted on keeping up the charade. "I can't cook! I can't!" I heard that the next night as she pulled a glazed ham shank from the oven, then the next morning over fried leftover ham slices in redeye gravy, and again at lunch with the split pea soup she made from the ham bone. Same with the platter of baked coconut chicken the next night, the pan roasted asparagus spears, and the cake she made by stacking homemade crepes one upon the other, with a thin layer of 'dulce de leche' and hazelnuts between each layer. "I can't cook! I can't!!"

Dirty liar.

Oh well. I lied about the whole "8 inches and a good job" thing when we met. So I guess we're even.

4. I love, I love, I love my job. I'm one of those rare, lucky fellows who can't wait for the weekend to end so he can go back to work Monday morning and have fun. But after now more than a month of being able to sleep until my body decides to wake up on its own, I'm a lot less eager to start getting up at 3am again than I would have imagined. I'm already starting to obsess to the point where it's waking me up at night, which is ironic.

There've been a few other things happening, but I'll save it for a future entry. Right now I just don't have time: Lizard Lick Towing is coming on!




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