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In the land of the broken I'm more dented than damaged

I was more worried about my face initially.

How vain is that (1)? My cheek was the last part of me to hit the ground, a second after the rest of me. It hit hard too. I had visions of blood and gristle and bruises blacker than coal.

But once I'd dragged myself up off the icy road that had blindsided me (2) and got back inside there wasn't a mark on me. I was as ugly as before I'd slipped. Suitably reassured, I was finally able to look at my arm. The arm I had fallen on. The arm I had unconsciously been nursing for the last five minutes. Was that swelling knot that used to be my wrist normal?

Turns out it wasn't. An hour later I was in A&E getting slathered in plaster and being told I'd definitely broken it. Lucky, really. The guy in the next cubicle had broken his ribs and from the sounds of him - imagine an anguished bull so stupid with pain it's actually honking like a bullfrog - broken ribs are further up the pain spectrum. In the cubicle beyond that was a guy with a bandaged head whose car had come off the road and ended up in a ditch. In the land of the broken I'm more dented than damaged.

Still, the past few days have brought home to me why evolution has given us two hands, rather than, say, one great, big, giant hand growing out of the centre of our chests. Suddenly even the smallest act - cleaning my teeth, opening a ring-pull, picking my nose - has become a monumental task. Have you ever tried to tie your shoelaces with one hand? It's impossible. And as for deoderising your left armpit with your left arm, well, frankly, you'd need to be Clarence the incredible Contortionist to do it right (3). And the only contortions I can manage these days are in my sentence constructions.

Obviously the breakage has won me some sympathy points. Even my colleagues at work sent me toffee, which as I may have already told you is my personal equivalent of crack cocaine (not that I've ever tried crack cocaine, you understand, but I do find it hard to imagine it's any more addictive than a box of Thorntons' special). And on the upside I won't be driving to Tesco for a few weeks. But then I won't be driving anywhere for a few weeks.

That said, I'm five days into my brokenness and if I'm honest it's getting boring. Not even a blue stookie can cheer me up (though it does go nicely with my jumper). "All I'm good for," I tell J, "is sitting on the sofa and changing channels on the TV."

She gives me look before she speaks. "Nothing new there then."

FOOTNOTES

[1] As if I have anything to be vain about.

[2] I had gone out to de-ice the car. That's too banal to be ironic, right?

[3] Now if that great, big, giant hand in the centre of your chest was double-jointed …

Twitter: @teddyjamieson

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