Sunday, April 27, 2008

Brokeback E. Spat

For Christmas, The Boy and I went to visit my parents. If you're a reader from way back, you remember they live in the mountains in southern Oregon. They were very excited to have us there for nearly 10 days, and planned LOTS of activities for us. Including riding ATV's. As it turns out, shifting with my hand while braking with my other hand is not really my strong point. During my "training session", there was a point where The Boy and Daddy Spatula were yelling "HIT THE BRAKES! HIT THE BRAKES!" I was yelling "WHERE THE HELL ARE THE BRAKES???" You would think the first part of the training would be where to find the brakes. But, you'd be wrong.

Exhibit 1: The Hedge
















You don't actually "know" me in person, but you can trust me when I say that the hole in the hedge is the exact shape of an E. Spat on an ATV going full speed.

So, even though any person with an IQ above freezing would know that I am clearly not cut out for the high adventure of ATV riding in the woods, we set off for just such an adventure.

To make the long story short...shifting from neutral into first while accelerating will definitely cause the ATV to go straight backwards onto the back wheels, throwing the rider off onto the rocky path. Hard. And, just as an aside, if this ever happens to you and you hear a giant "CRACK!!", it's not your helmet hitting the ground, no matter what everyone tries to convince you. It's your T-10 vertebrae breaking. Just so you know.

Exhibit 2: My T-10 vertebrae
















I didn't go to the hospital for nearly two months. It was two days before Christmas, I didn't want to make a scene and ruin everyone's holiday. My mom was already crying when we showed up from our ride with me covered in dirt and barely able to walk or move. I decided I had pulled a muscle and left it at that. When it still hurt at the end of February, I went to my doctor, had an X-ray, and...well...I guess the picture speaks for itself.

It's feeling pretty much better now. The ortho I went to told me it would probably take 6 months to heal most of the way, and hopefully I won't need surgery. Going to the ER probably wouldn't have changed anything - it still would have been a wait and see thing, but I would definitely have gotten better drugs. No one could believe I survived this on Aleve and a couple Flexeril the first day or two that my mom had left over from a hip injury. It hurt. Bad.

So, the moral of this story, if there is one, is that ATV's are dangerous and I'm a bad shifter. And also, I'm a total badass because I broke my back and didn't even cry!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Out of towners

We decided to make a spontaneous trip to Oregon to see my dad for his 60th birthday, which was yesterday. We flew in, showed up, and surprised him pretty good. It was fun. Anyway, since I have been pretty much the world's least reliable writer over the past few months, I thought I should say...no I haven't disappeared, yes I will be back in a few days, and no my home wireless internet isn't working. Again. Oh, you didn't ask? Well, it isn't. Just so you know. Not that I'm bitter.

In other news, my mom took us to lunch at her golf club today. The food was horrible. Not just run of the mill not that great. Truly awful. I actually didn't eat past the first bite because I knew I would be sick later. They did give it to us free. Yay. Too bad they couldn't have given it to us...say...edible. But, hey...whatever.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Third time's a charm (you know that's what you were thinking)

That's right guys - I've been gone for, like, six months. Sorry about that. The short version of events is that I was dealing with my MS and medication side effects, then I got engaged, , then I broke my back (oops!), then we bought a house, then we moved, then I made like a billion business trips. Whew.

Moving in order of occurence, I'll start with the engagement. It was very romantic...and, of course, there's kind of a funny story.

So, The Boy took me to Victoria, Canada, for the weekend (this is in mid-October). On our second night, we decided to walk to this restaurant right on the harbor and have dinner. As we're walking, we come across a girl in a motorized wheelchair. For someone in a motorized chair, she was moving at exactly the speed of totally stopped. We stopped to talk to her, and it turned out, the battery in her chair had died.

The Boy, being the nice guy he is, asked her if it would be OK if he took a look underneath the hood (metaphorically speaking), to see if he could help. She said "sure", so we spent a good half hour trying to get the chair moving. While The Boy is trying to become an expert on Canadian motorized wheelchair technology, I start talking to the girl. It turns out she has MS, and has just suffered a severe exacerbation that left her unable to walk. She was 26.

The Boy offered to disengage the emergency brake and push the chair to the restaurant we were heading to, where she said they would let her sit at the bar and recharge her battery. Unfortunately, the e-brake did not have a "disengage" setting.

To make a long story somewhat shorter, The Boy pushed this girl, in her motorized wheelchair (a total of at least 250 pounds between her and the chair), UP HILL, for probably close to a mile. We got to the restaurant and she pointed out her apartment, just at the top of the hill. So, yeah, he pushed her the rest of the way home. Swear to GOD.

Meanwhile, the boy has developed a certain, shall we say, sheen. He won't take his jacket off, no matter how many times I ask. Finally, on the way up the last big hill, he handed it over. He told me later he was terrified I would feel the ring box.

We get back down the hill to the restaurant and walk in, both of sweating like pigs. The bartender goes "Is it raining outside"? Uh, no. So, we tell this story and get a free round of drinks. Finally, we head up to the balcony and eat a lovely dinner overlooking Victoria Harbor. After dinner, The Boy proposed - with the ring of my dreams and two colors of pink M&M's printed with "E. Spat, will you marry me?" (half the message on each M&M, them's a lot of words!)

So, we came back engaged, and with an added bonus of good karma.

Also, at another bar we said we had just gotten engaged, so the guy next to us bought us some shots. After we did the shots, he goes "So, are you pregnant?" Yes. Yes I am. My baby loves Jack Daniels and secondhand smoke! Who asks that?

And, perhaps the best part - which I learned later - The Boy sweat so much that he had to go to the bathroom for probably 15 minutes to find two M&M's with the words still on them. Sweaty M&M's are so awesome!


In the next few days, I'll tell the scintillating story of how I got a compression fracture of my T-10 vertebrae.
























I'm considering coming back.

Thoughts? Is anyone still checking for updates? Drop me a line. I haven't checked my email for nearly 6 months (I suck), but I miss writing, and I miss all my pals. I'm still not practicing law, but I am getting married, and I am doing really well. Tell me if any of you are still out there!