It wasn't a smart thing to do

I knew what I had done the instant it happened. 

Even before the pain went from my little finger to my little brain, I knew I had screwed up.

I was trimming the top of a rather tall cedar hedge when I nearly lopped off the baby finger on my left hand.

I was half-way up a four-metre ladder and was reaching to the far side of the hedge when disaster struck.

Sure, I could have moved the ladder over a little bit, but that would mean climbing down the ladder, moving it a few inches, climbing back up…. It just seemed like too much effort, so I decided to reach for it instead.

Before I continue, I would just like to say I never claimed to be overly bright, something loyal readers will confirm no doubt.

To get to the far side of the top of the hedge, I reached out as far as I could, holding the electric trimmer in one hand while squeezing the on-switch trigger thingy.

No problem and all went well until I brought the trimmer back toward me and attempted to grab the round handle on the top of the trimmer.

I say attempted because had I succeeded, this column would not exist.

Instead of grabbing the little black handle, I missed and my little finger did its impression of a branch and the trimmer did its impression of a trimmer chopping up my finger.

As soon as I felt the little metal teeth of the trimmer hit my finger, I knew what I had done. There was nothing else to do but wait for the pain, and stop the bleeding.

The pain arrived — big time — as did the blood.

It is amazing how much plasma you can distribute upon the Earth from a few chops with a reciprocating metal blade.

I climbed down the ladder just as the Missus came outside to see me holding my hand with blood dripping to the ground, creating a kind of CSI home edition thing.

My wife is a nurse, so the injury did not faze her in the least.

She leapt into immediate action, and grabbed gauze and whatever else she needed all the while doing her best to stifle any and all comments of the smart aleck variety, which I believe was the most challenging part of the whole scenario for her.

I know she had more than a few comments she wanted to send my way, but choked them down — until the medical procedure was taken care of anyway.

When my kids heard dad had cut his finger, they came running out to survey the scene.

“You mean you didn't cut it off? Awwww, bummer.”

“Thanks, kids. I'm OK, really. Don't worry about your ol' dad. He's a trooper. He'll be fine. Thanks for caring.”

Once the bleeding was under control, it was off to the walk-in clinic for some up-close-and-personal care of the doctor variety.

After I had spent the mandatory amount of time in the waiting room, I was escorted into the little doctor room where the doctor does all of his medical-type stuff.

In this case, the first thing he did was cause me a lot more pain.

The sadist, I mean doctor, put a needle directly into the open wound and it took a few seconds before the freezing kicked in — a few long and painful seconds.

“This may sting a little.”

A little? Did you just say a little?

“Hey, doc, this might sting a little, because I am going to kick you square in the….”

But once the freezing kicked in, all was forgiven.

Actually, it wasn't, but the man was about to sew up a body part, so I felt I should be on my best behaviour.

I set a record that day — eight stitches — beating my previous record by two.

I no longer have feeling in the tip of that finger, but that is OK, considering how much feeling I had when it was chopped and stuck with a needle, not feeling anything felt pretty good.

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About the Author

Darren Handschuh has been working as a writer and photographer in the media industry for the past 25 years. He is married, has three children, a dog and two cats (although he is not completely sure how that part happened).

He takes a humourous look at life, and has often said, “I might as well laugh at myself, everyone else does.” 

His writings have been compared to a collection of words from the English language assembled in a somewhat coherent manner. High praise indeed.

Life gives Darren plenty of material for his column, and no one is safe from his musings – especially himself. 

He regularly writes to his blog www.therudemonkey.blogspot.ca.

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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