Wednesday, March 06, 2013
Marriage 501, Lecture 732: I married a panicker, Part 2
AGAIN: DO NOT READ THIS IS IF YOU ARE SQUEAMISH.
Where was I?
Oh. Fingertip garnish on sliced fennel.
Very bleeding fingertip.
My mandoline cuts slices about 1/8" thick.
There you go.
I grabbed my finger, squeezed it, turned on the faucet (cold water), put my bleeding finger under it, and yelled for SH.
"Get me a bandaid!" I shouted.
Then I remembered who I was dealing with.
1. There was going to be an interrogation and
2. SH is a bit squeamish.
I squeezed my finger, held it high, turned to the counter, flipped the mandoline, grabbed the fingertip, and put it in the trash. Which, fortunately, has a foot pedal for opening.
My Engagement Trash Can: preventing smelly kitchens and disasters for almost five years now.
SH came downstairs. I yelled at him again, asking for a band aid. He came into the kitchen to see what's what.
"Just get me a bandaid!" I said.
"You've cut yourself!" he said. "Oh shit! Oh shit!"
I gritted my teeth. "Please. Just. Get. Me. A. Bandaid."
"Oh no! Oh no! OH NO!"
Then I started to feel woozy. There wasn't even that much blood coming out of the finger, mixing with the cold water, and washing down the drain.
But I had made the mistake of looking at my finger. I had seen the raw flesh.
I was getting that woozy feeling.
I know that feeling.
I know that I am about to pass out feeling.
That's what happens when blood leaves my body against my will.
Or when I get my belly button pierced.
I pass out.
I know that passing-out feeling.
SH was in the bathroom, looking for a bandaid, telling me that we were almost out of bandaids and did I intend to do something about it.
"I'm about to pass out," I shouted. "Maybe you should come in here."
Then I tore off a piece of paper towel (disposable and sanitary, as compared to the dishcloth right in front of me), wrapped it around the bleeding finger and squeezed, sat on the bench by the computer, and passed out.
Have you ever passed out? I think it might be impossible to describe the experience to someone who has not passed out. Imagine really fast, hyper-intensive dreams. Hours of them. They happen in a minute. When you come to, you have no idea who you are, where you are, or what happened.
All you know is your husband - wait - some strange man - is in front of you, saying, "Oh shit! Oh shit! OH SHIT!" (Sorry, Mom.)
I sat up. My left hand was still wrapped around my finger. I saw a bandaid on the table. I looked at SH. He was panicking.
I reached for the bandaid, removed the paper towel - "Oh no! THAT'S BLEEDING!" SH shouted - and put the bandaid on my finger. Squeezed, squeezed, squeezed.
That's when the post-cut analysis started. How could I let this happen, etc.
I interrupted SH. "Could I just have a little sympathy right now?" I asked.
"I'm torn between panicking and wanting to know how this could happen!" he said. "I am very, very careful when I cut things! And now I might have to finish all that cooking! You're only halfway through with the onion and the green pepper for the ropa vieja! I hate chopping vegetables!"
I rolled my eyes.
"It is a great comfort to me to have a husband who is so good in a crisis."
"Your face!" he said. "There is no blood in it! You're completely white!" [Except for, I imagine, all the spots from the sun damage I did to my skin as a tanning teenager.]
"That's because I passed out. Let's go lie down. I think I should lie down."
We moved to the bedroom. He continued. "That shouldn't have happened!"
"I know," I said, "but for now, could I recover a little bit? And may I ask you to not be such a panicker and maybe just get me a bandaid when I ask?"
"I helped," he protested. "When you were passing out, I didn't know what to do. But then it looked like you were going to fall onto the floor, so I held you up."
"Thank you for that," I said. "And the screaming was a particularly effective method of getting me to come to."
"And I was slapping your face gently," he added. "Don't forget that. I didn't know what I was going to do if you didn't come to."
I lifted my finger. The blood was still soaking through the bandaid and the paper towel. SH paled. "It's still bleeding! Do we need to go to the emergency room?"
"Why?" I asked. "What would they do? It's not worth it to re-attach such a small piece of flesh."
"Your flesh! What happened to it?"
"I put it in the trash."
"But the mandoline! It has blood on it!" He jumped up, ran to the kitchen, and washed the mandoline. I squeezed my finger.
He returned. "I hope there's no blood on the fennel," he said.
"I appreciate your concern for me," I said.
"Well, I am concerned, but it's hard for me to be too sympathetic for a problem that could have been prevented."
"So blame the victim?" I asked.
"You weren't being careful," he said.
"You were no help."
"I kept you from falling to the floor! And I got the bandaid!"
"Yeah, but you didn't put it on my finger."
"Blood makes me squeamish," he admitted.
"It's a good thing we don't have kids," I said.
Then I got up, walked to the kitchen, saw blood on the floor, bent down to clean it, and realized it was fresh blood, not old blood. Which meant my finger was still bleeding. Which freaked SH out even more.
"Please do not consider a career in emergency medicine," I asked him.
Then I went downstairs and watched two episodes of "Big Bang Theory" with my hand elevated, squeezing my finger, which was enough time for the bleeding to stop.