Stiff City, Arizona
Thursday, May 11, 2006 7:33:25 PM
As I sat on the steps wondering whether I was going to puke, the dog waddled up and licked my face. I was conscious (barely) of the fact that I was the only person in the house as Mrs. Fiendish had gone out on one of her ritual kerb-crawling missions to try and locate number 2 son, who is under the impression that being 14 years old entitles him to stay out past 11 o'clock without telling his parents where he is. So, a bruised kidney and a sore hip was a bit of a let-off considering that medical help would not have been forthcoming very swiftly had I gone for the full neck-break.
Morbid thoughts pass through your mind when you have even the faintest brush with death. I lay there, wondering whether the pain would ever go away, when the thought popped into my mind that if I lived alone, the puppy's licking would turn to biting and devouring within about 3 days - except she's not been introduced to meat yet, so she might find me a bit repellent.
Eventually I made it to the bottom of the stairs and crawled on to the settee. Members of the family eventually returned, one at a time; to each I mentioned that I had a bad back and each mention was met with a display of indifference. I am used to this from the kids but I had expected at least a "you daft sod" from Mrs. Fiendish, but apparently she was annoyed at me for letting number 2 son slip out of the house at 9:00pm without saying where he was.
The following day, as I took 3 minutes to edge painfully out of bed, it dawned on Mrs. Fiendish that I was quite badly hurt and once this message got through to the whole family, I actually got a bit of help and sympathy. Number one son helped me out of a chair, number 3 son had the brilliant idea of applying the wheat blanket to my sore back and number 2 son slipped out of the house at 9:00pm again without Mrs. Fiendish noticing, thereby removing from under her the moral high ground.
In truth, the pain disappeared the following day, though it returned whenever I sat down for long periods, got up too quickly, bent over or did any sort of stretching. Sitting down for long periods is what I do at work so I took the opportunity to take the longest sickie I have ever taken in my career: 4 glorious sun-filled days, so far. Over a 30 year period I have probably only had 10 days off sick up till now and most of those were probably hangovers. In days gone by I would have struggled in this week, bad back and all, even if it meant standing at the keyboard like Little Richard and doing my work. However, loyalty to the company has evaporated faster than our London workforce (nice to know this great trading nation is still exporting things - like jobs - en masse) and so I have stayed at home.
Today I visited the doctor and he gave me some drugs to take and since swallowing one, even sitting down at the PC is no longer painful, hence this blog entry. So, I suppose I shall go back into work tomorrow, but only because some of my colleagues are relying on me to do some work for them.