Let’s Do The Stupidest Thing We Can Think Of

Posted: December 15, 2013 in Non-Music, Storytime
Tags: , , , , , , ,

When I was about 10, my brother Kevin and I made regular trips to the YWCA in North Lawrence to use the pool. Yes, that’s the YWCA. You see, we had a family friend who worked for the YWCA, and we had easy access to their pool. I’m sure we could have had easy access to the YMCA pool, but for some reason, parental concerns led us to the YWCA. Considering the bathing suit factor, I don’t see how this could have gone wrong, but let me tell my story …

One day Kevin and I were making our trek on foot to North Lawrence to use the YWCA pool, and we were with our friend Kaios. We all lived in South Lawrence, and to reach North Lawrence, we had to cross a bridge over the Merrimack River. The best route for us was to use the Broadway bridge, whose railing was made of coarse concrete, as seen here (the actual bridge we crossed):


In our infinite wisdom of double digit ages, we decided it would be cool to drag our fingers across this bridge’s concrete railing for the entire span (maybe 1/4 mile). A couple seconds of this feels like a good scratch. I’m here to not leave it to your imagination what doing this for 1/4 mile feels like.

Somehow, we didn’t notice during our journey across the bridge that we were scraping all the skin off of our fingertips. I think it’s because our fingertips went numb during the process in a defensive maneuver that we should have expected, but we were young and foolish. By the time we got to the other side, we had eroded our entire fingertips, and they were bleeding. How we missed the blood that *must* have left a trail on the railing, I don’t know. But suddenly, how much pool time we were going to get wasn’t our main concern. Our fingertips hurt like hell!

The trip to the YWCA was ruined, and I remember complaining to my dad that night at dinner about how much it hurt, and I didn’t understand why. He said that we had scraped away all the dead skin that is on the outside and wore our fingertips down to the live, bleeding skin. It was soooo painful (I was 10!), and it was hard to really whine too much about it, because we totally brought it on ourselves. In retrospect, the pain probably lasted a few days and wasn’t intolerable, but you can rest assured that Kevin and I never dragged our fingers across anything again.

Sometimes, ya gotta learn the hard way …


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