On Saturday I went to the Santa Monica farmer's market. It was the first time I'd been in over 5 years. This is, of course, in spite of the fact that when I first moved to Santa Monica I was sure I'd go every Saturday.
In any case, I bought a lot of cheap and 'exotic' veggies. They weren't actually too exotic, but, they were a bit less standard than broccoli (a small squash, yellow carrots, turnips and bok choi). Josh had requested mixed veggies for dinner that night and I thought it would be fun to make a different mix.
For the most part, things went rather smoothly. Smoothly, that is, until I got to the squash. Squash has a hard outer shell. Squash also has a round outer shell. This makes 'outer shell' removal a bit tough.
I started with my trusty paring knife, but, it was not getting the job done. This is partly because a paring knife is not designed to remove the hard shell of a squash and partly because I have not sharpened my paring knife in quite some time.
This is the point in the story where I get the brilliant idea to try the small, serrated knife from my knife set. I thought some sawing action might make things easier. I also thought that since the knife had not been used at all it would still have it's factory sharpness and that would make things easier.
I was right on both counts. Not only was I able to get the shell off more quickly but I was able to 'saw' in a curve so I was losing less good squash.
Then, the knife slipped. Although the tip of the knife was moving in slow motion, my thumb was not fast enough to escape its clutches. I watched the knife start to slice through my thumb and did the only thing I could - I closed my eyes as tightly as possible.
"Oh....That's not good."
That's what I said as I clutched my thumb tightly inside my fist and rushed to the bathroom. I'd like to pretend my senses are so amazing and my apartment is so clean that I was able to get there with my eyes closed, but, I was peeking a bit. I'm not sure why I didn't just open my eyes fully, but, I couldn't. Perhaps I was afraid of seeing the wound - as if seeing that it was deep would make it need stitches rather than it just needing stitches because it was deep. In any case, I quickly walked to the bathroom through tightly shut but sort-of open eyes.
"What happened?" I could hear the alarm in Josh's voice in spite of my very calm "That's not good" followed by my blind rush to the bathroom.
"Ummm...may have cut my finger. No big deal."
Yep, no big deal. Except I still hadn't looked at the cut. I had no idea if it was gushing blood or shallower than a paper cut. I unclinched my fist long enough to wrap the thumb in toilet paper (still without looking) and then tightly clenched the thumb again.
"Let me see it."
"Let me see it."
"I can't. If you look at it, it will start hurting."
He tried to explain that's not how these things work. He's not as smart as he looks sometimes. This is EXACTLY how these things work. At least that's how they work for me.
"I'm going to go get a bandaid and some anti-bacterial wipes and then you're going to have to let me look at it.
I laughed. I knew I was being silly. "O.k. I know it's not bad. I just can't handle looking at these sorts of things. Cuts that is. If I had fallen and scraped my knee bad, I wouldn't have a problem. Cuts are different."
I figured I was settled enough to let him mess with things since I was able to joke about it.
That's when I started to feel very light headed. And I started sweating. And I got nauseous.
"I think I'm going to puke."
"No. I'm sorry. I wish I were joking. I think I'm going to puke."
"Oh...o.k. Do you want me here."
"No thanks. I can puke on my own."
He left and closed the door behind himself.
I kneeled over the toilet shaking violently.
I started heaving. One heave. Two heaves. Three heaves. Ha! Ha! Ha! (which only makes sense if you grew up watching the Count on Sesame Street).
I didn't actually throw up though. I just went through all the motions.
Then I laid on the bathroom floor trying to cool down.
The whole time my thumb was clutched tightly in my fist and my mind was pretending it wasn't part of the spectacle.
Seriously, Jessica? This is how you react to a tiny cut? I'm ashamed to know you.
I told my mind that didn't make sense since it was me. Then I wiped the cold sweat off of my face.
I got up and walked out of the bathroom. Josh commented on my color (which, was apparently a lovely shade of green) and asked if I was o.k.
I held my thumb out, looked away and told him to do his worst.
He looked at it, poked and prodded it, washed it out and bandaged it up. Other than when he was applying the antiseptic wipe, I didn't really feel anything.
"How bad was it?"
"A little bit deeper than a paper cut. It had already stopped bleeding by the time you let me see it."
The moral of this story? Don't bring me to a knife fight.
Speaking of knives, I suggested to Josh that we get rid of the one that cut me. He told me I was being vindictive.
"No I'm not. I know how these things go. Now that it's had a taste of human flesh....none of us are safe."
Needless to say, I was over-ruled and the knife is still there.....waiting!