Saturday, July 21, 2007

Under Pressure

Exactly eight years ago, my ex-brother-in-law, Joe, damn near lost his foot. He was victim of a pressure washer incident.

Joe and his buddy, Rex, were riding jet skis in the canals that criss-cross that particular pocket of hell known as South Florida. I never participated in their jet ski and skiing activities because those canals are just nasty. And gators sun themselves on the banks. Big gators. I guess that keeps you from falling. So they finished up and were cleaning off the jet skis, because that canal water is just nasty, and Joe, in a fateful moment of inattention, shot his foot with the pressure washer. It made a small hole in the top of his foot, maybe a half-inch around. He didn't think much of it. The next morning, me and the ex were called over to their abode on that nasty canal in Boca Raton to baby sit the niece and nephew. Seems that Joe's foot had swelled halfway up to his knee, and he and the missus thought it might be wise to go seek medical attention. as he was leaving, I made a joke about them just amputating the damn thing.

well, they almost had to amputate the damn thing. Joe spent over a month in the hospital with a severe infection, brought on by all that nasty canal water getting into the little hole in his foot. There were skin grafts and surgeries involving words like scraping and pus, and it was touch and go as to whether he was going to get to keep the bottom of his leg. They managed to save it, but he's got a helluva scar on top of his tootsie.

So I found myself today standing on my back deck for several hours wearing flip flops, pressure washing the deck around the pool. (I didn't know the deck was cream colored. I thought it was black.) And I thought about Joe's foot, and the fact that it was exactly eight years ago, and I was very careful in my pressure washing technique. I'm happy to report there have been no pressure washing injuries thus far today.

So how do I know it was exactly eight years ago? Because we were called over to baby-sit while Joe went to the hospital on the Sunday of the British Open at Carnoustie, which saw the greatest meltdown in all of golf history, Jean Van de Velde's seven at the 18th when he needed a six to win. And I remember it because while history was being made on the television, I was trying to watch it while being forced to gleefully cheer on the dance routine choreographed by two five-year-old girls to Hanson's "Mmmm-bop".


At 5:22 PM , Blogger Sarcastro said...

Dude I work with got himself a staph infection in his scalp.

So, they, uh, amputated his scalp and replaced it with skin grafts.

It ain't pretty.

At 10:48 AM , Blogger GingerSnaps said...

I grew up across the street from one of those nasty canals. People used to actually fish in it. BLAH.

We should get our girls together soon!

At 1:28 PM , Anonymous Jon said...

good lord, I remember those disgusting canals, I can't believe anyone would do that. I didn't even like getting *near* them just because of the smell.


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