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Friday, June 11, 2010

Hmmm…the 11th you say…

Hey, I know FIFA is in full swing right now, or perhaps more accurately, full kick. I will confess, I’ve never been a huge soccer fan, although I do enjoy playing it on the video game version against my highly competitive brother-in-law - for whose self esteem I throw each match, even though I am easily a natural and virtual soccer juggernaut.

My dislike could be rooted in an old sports injury I received back in high school. This is a newspaper column of mine from a few years back:

Mr. Sports

Even though I tend to live a relatively sedentary lifestyle, I have had two notable sports injuries in my life.

Not so very long ago, I needed medical attention for a substantial laceration on my foot, inflicted while I was at home, folding a pair of socks. I know what you’re thinking – where was our housekeeper that day?? And how exactly was I folding those socks?

Even more inexplicable (or just ironic), reinforcing what I said earlier about sports injuries – it was a Nike sock!! What are the odds??

To fess up, I had dropped a solitary sock while folding the pair, and had to reach down to pick it up. Which is when I somehow managed to catch my bare foot on a surprisingly sharp, and frankly downright bloodthirsty drawer handle.

Believe it or not, most serious accidents do happen in the home, and I should have been more vigilant in my chores that day. Even something as seemingly innocent as a pair of socks can suddenly force you deep into the home medicine cabinet, hopping on your one good leg, cursing and howling while hunting for something to stop the bleeding. I often wonder if this sort of thing ever happens to Tom Cruise??

My worst sports injury however, was an actual sports injury. It was back in my first year of high school, during an early morning phys-ed class. Our gym teacher back then had the ghoulish philosophy of starting the day off with brisk physical activity - before our morning coffee even had a chance to cool down!!

At any rate, the game of that particular morning was soccer, and though you wouldn’t know it now by looking at me, I was a natural back then. Thin as a javelin, and swift like a jungle cat, I was naturally funneled into the position best suited to my skills. I played goal (the space behind the goalpost made for a terrific little nook to store my coffee cup…)

As it was bright and early in the morning that fateful day, the ground happened to have a fair amount of dew still settled upon it. I noticed a few of my classmates struggling to stay upright, during the pitched battle further away, on the field.

That pitched battle suddenly had the audacity to come closer to me and my morning coffee. A member of the opposite team kicked a high ball, over to my right side. I flew like a released javelin, into the air, knocking the soccer ball out of bounds, away from the goal. Like a blunt javelin however, when I touched the wet grass, my feet went back towards the net, while the rest of me rushed down towards the grass. Face first…

When I stood up, I thought I was holding a selection of teeth in my hands. Looking down at the damage, I had been gravely mistaken. It was the top half of my bottom lip!! Shaved clean off by my over-bite, I suppose.

Rushing to the hospital, no one thought to perhaps brush the bits of grass out of my mouth, so when we got into the emergency room, that was the first order of business. Remarkably, without having preserved my lip-bit on ice, it was successfully reattached.

During my convalescence, I retired from soccer. Who knows? Had I stayed with the game, there could have been a movie named “Bend It Like That Dan Guy”!

Unlike Mr. Beckham, they’d be referring to my clavicle…

Chow for now!!

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