Issue #171 – “Lord of the Slings” – July 19th, 2010

-Prior to having it repaired earlier this month, I protected my injured left shoulder with a CVS brand sling to prevent it from spontaneously dislocating. After surgery, I was given what I call the Lord of the Slings – a monstrous sling contraption complete with a separate pad that straps around my waist to cushion my arm. Having surgery and being stuck in a sling for six weeks and counting has been a trying experience – as in I’ve spent a lot of time trying not to drunkenly re-injure myself. I’m confident, though, that as soon as I’ve recovered I’ll rejoin the fray with abandon. After all, it’s damn near impossible to reach for the stars when your arm is velcroed to a pillow around your waist.

-Since my shoulder started bothering me, I’ve been consulting with my two fraternity brothers who are now orthopedic surgeons – Shermdog and Triplet #3. And by “consulting” I mean calling them wasted at 5am after my shoulder pops out yet again. They are both always eager to help, but what depresses me most is that drunk dialing my male doctor friends is the closest I’ve come to a booty call in quite some time.

-I waited for several hours in pre-op before my surgery, during which time I befriended a twenty-year-old college kid who looked exactly like Shia LaBeouf and was having Tommy John surgery on his pitching arm. I shared some sage wisdom with him, namely that if you’re a twenty-year-old college kid with a bum elbow who looks like Shia LeBeouf, quit the baseball team immediately and concentrate on laying as much pipe as possible. He’ll thank me someday.

-In the operating room, the anesthesiologist asked me what music I’d like to hear while he put me under. I requested Jay-Z, not realizing that there’s no need to get pumped up for something I was going to be unconscious for. I don’t remember which track he put on, but I do recall that it was explicit to the point of being inappropriate and everyone in the OR seemed uncomfortable. In other words, exactly the environment you want going into surgery.

-The procedure was a success and I got the external stitches out last week. Since the surgery was arthroscopic, I’ll just have two one-inch scars on the front of my shoulder, and one in the back. The only other scars I have are on the inside of my right knee from falling off my bike about seventeen years ago, and in my belly button from an appendectomy in 2001. So basically I have the least cool collection of scars ever. Even my options for lying are limited: “Oh, that there in my belly button? Yeah, tickle fight accident.”

-I don’t start physical therapy for another couple of weeks, though I’ve been told that’s the hardest part of recovery. This being LA and all, I bet my odds of getting an attractive female therapist are quite strong. This is important because when attempting to lift a five-pound weight makes me cry, I want to be sure I’m in the presence of a beautiful woman.

-What I didn’t realize going into surgery is that the anchors used to reattach my labrum (the shoulder ligament I FUBAR’d), are not dissolvable. So I’m gonna have these sutures inside my shoulder for the rest of my life. While I’ll never feel or notice them, I hope they’ll serve as a silent reminder of what I just went through. I’m not invincible. And I’m definitely not a twenty-year-old college kid anymore. I merely act like one.

-As always, here are some random things I’ve been ruminating about lately…

-I consider myself a sports fanatic, but under no circumstances would I consider going to the airport to greet my team after they’ve won a championship. I try to spend as little time at the airport as possible. There’s gonna be a parade, right? Let them come to me.

-Fact: on June 27th, I met the dumbest person alive. She was sitting next to me and asked if I knew where to find the restroom. We were on a plane.

-What the fuck do people do to the computers in hotel business centers? Spyware, viruses, taskbars half the size of the screen, it’s ridiculous. All I want to do is print my boarding pass but apparently my fellow travelers have other ideas, like downloading 400 versions of Internet Explorer and spilling honey on the keys.

-The same week my little cousin Matthew gave me some of his Silly Bandz, I was at a barbeque and got “Iced” for the first time. It just goes to show that you’re never too old to sample a rapidly dying fad.

-If I email you, requesting that you ask a mutual acquaintance a question for me, don’t just forward on my original email to that person. There’s a reason I’m using you as a middleman, but now you’ve played me for a fool.

-There’s no need to have a giant pitcher, water bottle, or jug on your desk that you drink from all day long. Nobody needs that much fucking water. You’re creeping everyone out.

-The good news is that the surgeon said, “You’ll be back on your feet in no time.” The bad news is that he was operating on my shoulder.

-Whenever a member of my family calls and I don’t pick up, they make sure to mention in their voicemail, “You’re probably sleeping.” There are many reasons why I might not pick up the phone. True, this particular time I happened to be sleeping, but don’t assume!

-I sincerely hope the trend of businesses placing hand sanitizer everywhere soon extends to ATMs. I can’t imagine what diseases the slobs who use my ATM are carrying – considering they can’t even bother to either take their receipts or successfully throw them in a garbage can that’s six inches away.

-And, finally, two topics I’ve written about extensively over the years are the extravagant birthday pub crawls I used to organize every summer in New York, and my philandering frat buddy Shermdog, who’s now a surgeon. In 2006, Shermdog hooked up with a girl he met on one of my crawls and began dating her. Last week, he texted me that he had returned to the bar where they met and was about to propose. And so, in one fell swoop, two of my fondest memories – the legend of Shermdog and the debauchery of my pub crawls – were tarnished forever. Although I’m glad Shermdog has found his soulmate, and I know my shoulder couldn’t handle another pub crawl anyway, the vestiges of my twentysomething life continue to disappear. Soon all I’ll have left are memories, and a lame belly button scar. Fuck me.