Rabe vents: I Wept Because I Had No Shoes…

John Rabe

John Rabe is not happy with his hand, his arm, God, the Universe, bowling, getting older, or pretty much anything right now.

Vent Alert

As you can see, I hurt my arm last night. I wasn't doing something stupid. I wasn't drunk. I was warmed up. I simply ... bowled. (All Star Lanes in Eagle Rock has a great special early in the week.)

And in the middle of throwing another gutter ball, I felt a sharp pain in my right arm.

"Oh F-word," I thought. Not again. Every time I try to do something good for my 46-year old body, my 46-year old body rebels. I ride my bike, I hurt my back and my butt. Run? Hurt a toe. "Get fat!" my body seems to be saying.

Last night, I iced the arm, took Advil, and brooded. This is my right arm. I'm right handed. What the hell am i going to do if I can't type, can't move a mouse, can't edit in ProTools? Nothing. Useless.

And my left hand? It suddenly occurred to me that it's pretty remarkable that we have two appendages with such different levels of ability. With my right hand, I can practically pick up an atom and throw it through a pinhole. Doing anything with my left hand is like a dog trying to open an aspirin bottle with one paw.

Suddenly, I was more sympathetic with people who get depressed when they become disabled in some way. The ones who spiral into afternoons spent at The King Eddy or The Silver Rail. I slept poorly. This morning, I discovered that I could type and mouse, but can't grasp anything very hard. I could make coffee but had to get my husband to dry me off after the shower. This is less sexy than it sounds when one of the parties is ticked off and feeling old.

Driving to work, I passed a neighbor who has only the stump of his left arm.

This was theoretically my public radio catharsis moment.

"Ah," I'd think, "See how much worse it could be."

Nope. Still angry.

The big picture will have to come later ... and the KPCC Newshounds softball team will probably score their first win of the season this week without me.

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