Press "Enter" to skip to content

I am such a wuss (and other Wednesday ramblings)

Last night I jammed my two little leftie toes on a table leg while wandering around in the dark. Well so? That’s usually one of those things where you hop around and cuss for a couple of minutes then life goes on. But this kept hurting all night and by morning those two toes were fat and red and the foot around them was fat and blue.

Still, we’re not talking about a major health crisis here. Just an owie.

I’m rarely ever sick and it’s been years since I’ve been injured. Meanwhile, nearly everybody I know has had health problems lately — from colds that turn into pneumonia to a flu that lingers for six weeks (in one case even leading to neurological problems) to … cancer.

So I have a lot of nerve getting all pouty about an owie.

But good heavens, did it hurt hobbling along a rocky logging road on this morning’s dog walk. I didn’t get very far and my whole body felt unhealthy and out of balance from my lurching gait. When Ava stepped on that foot after we got home, I thought my head was going to go through the ceiling.

Chronically healthy people are notorious for not appreciating what sick or disabled friends are going through. Something like this is a teeny, tiny token good reminder. Now I begin to understand my friend who had her foot wedged under a car engine in a long-ago accident, recovered “fully” for many years, but is now, in middle age, paying the price all over again.

But some sufferings I hope I never will have to understand. Not personally, anyhow.


Still, my whiny walk was productive. I found this dumped at a wide spot on the logging road:


Yes, it’s uuuuuugly and straight out of the 1970s. But it’s solid pine and sturdy and I think it will paint up in a cool and funky way. Maybe I’ll even glue some beads and faux gems on it. It’s been out there long enough to be covered in seagull cr*p, but not long enough to have warped. So there’s hope for it yet.


I got to realizing that I haven’t found much useful stuff in the woods the last few years even though I’m out there as much as ever and people (&^%$#@!) are still using the woods as a free landfill.

I used to find a lot of seriously good stuff — a dog house, ladders, a set of stairs and a porch to go with it (formerly a reviewing stand for a local high school’s homecoming royalty, so I was told, but a perfect porch for my old yurt), a beautiful Deco headboard for a bed, even a gun cabinet with etched glass doors.

Now, most of the junk dumped out there is … just junk. I cuss over the naily boards and broken glass that offer the needless hazard of slow death to wild animals. I turn the pointy stuff downward and pick up some of the worst. But I don’t find as much useful stuff as I used to.

Another small manifestation of the Great Recession and our endless economic “recovery”?


On other subjects … would you ever believe anything anybody from the NSA, CIA, or other spy agency ever said? About anything?

I must admit that this made me laugh. But once again, not in a jolly way.

Yes, Mr. Creepy Gen. Alexander, Sir. Sure. You have “only the numbers” we call and call from. Not a word of our phone, text, or email conversations. But even if that were true (which it’s not) … the problem is that you have them.

Even with the new plan to keep the numbers only at the phone companies (who, of course, never, ever, ever randomly share data with our masters the supersnoops), it’s as Ron Fournier says: The surveillance state is alive, well, and being protected against We the People.


Michelle Malkin writes about “My trip to the pot shop.”

Malkin has been such a neocon about so many things, but she’s been a reliable advocate for medical cannabis. And for that she credits one man, now long dead.

Who turns out to be somebody I knew. I worked briefly with Ralph Seeley when he was still a journalist. He already had the rare cancer that would kill him nine years later and put him through such hell before then. I knew he had died and knew, vaguely, that he’d played a role in the early medical cannabis movement. But I had no idea how big a role. That came after I’d lost most contact with him.

Thing is, Ralph was sort of an a**hole. And I don’t say that to disparage the dead. Because Ralph was exactly the sort of brilliant, pushy, ego-driven, I-don’t-care-what-you-think, nobody-gets-in-my-way a**hole who makes things happen against all odds.

More power to ya, Ralph. Rest in Peace.


  1. LarryA
    LarryA March 26, 2014 12:30 pm

    “We’re not [monitoring the emails],” Alexander said. “So he can now go back to writing emails. The reality is, we don’t do that. And if we did, it would be illegal and we’d be … held accountable and responsible.”

    Amazing. He said it without laughing.

  2. Bear
    Bear March 26, 2014 12:35 pm

    I’lll see your toes and raise you an ankle and a knee. I’d offer to send you my cane when I’m done with it, but judging by the 10 minutes it took to get to the mailbox and back (greatly improved over the twenty minutes it was taking, though still nasty compared to the minute or two it oughta take) you’ll finish healing first. Come to think of it, a little medical maryjane would probably help, if only so that I don’t care about the pain. Too bad I can’t afford even scotch, much less MM.

    RE: Peanut Boy- Frankly, if you buy even the limited government version of what the feds are supposed to be doing (-giggle-), Carter is one person whose communications they bloody well should be monitoring, given his penchant for high level meddling in international affairs and foreign policy. To claim they aren’t only highlights the lies.

  3. Claire
    Claire March 26, 2014 12:40 pm

    Bear — Oh. I remember Joel saying you’d blown out a knee. I agree, that’s much worse than my sore little toesies. I expect even after you’re able to ditch the cane you’ll be forecasting the weather with that knee for a long time to come.

    LarryA — Yeah, amazing isn’t it, that he can say such stuff with a straight face. But then, he has lots and lots of practice.

  4. Matt, another
    Matt, another March 26, 2014 2:49 pm

    General Alexander is well, a General. He will always support the party line, will never buck the system and does not come close to understanding freedom or the constitution. Lying with a straight face and telling the boss what he wants to here is stock in trade for General Officers.

  5. ENthePeasant
    ENthePeasant March 26, 2014 3:34 pm

    Yes, you’re a wuss, you don’t experience anything as bad as I do on an hourly basis… oh, wait, I’m acting like a wuss… Pain is pain. You’re in some and that’s tough. The worse pain I’ve ever had in my entire life, and I will not bore you with some of my more extreme injuries, was a broken thumb. It was in a cast, I was taking pain meds… and it would still start to throb so badly I’d have a terrible headache. Pain, no matter the location, is not to be ignored. Take it easy and let yourself heal.

    These guys are outside the law and need to be shot, electrocuted, lethally injected, guillotined, whatever. They have have everyone’s secrets, which they will use as long as they breath air, and that’s the only way to make sure we return to freedom.

  6. Claire
    Claire March 26, 2014 3:34 pm

    I think the thing that bothered me most about Alexander’s lie was how patronizing it was, and how it was worded to get the most naive or bobble-headed people to tell themselves or their friends, “Oh, it’s okay. See? NSA is just like the phone company.”

  7. Paul Bonneau
    Paul Bonneau March 26, 2014 4:09 pm

    When govt stooges tell obvious baldfaced lies, there is a cost. Regular people stop believing them, which puts them on the path of giving up on the government religion. The one thing government needs more than any other thing is at least the appearance of legitimacy. And like the dumb asses they are, they’re just pissing it away.

  8. Karen
    Karen March 26, 2014 4:35 pm

    Owie!! Hope you can take it easy a bit and, like ENP says, let it heal. I also hope you didn’t use up all your bad words because you never know when you’ll need them again. 🙂

  9. naturegirl
    naturegirl March 26, 2014 4:54 pm

    Jeez, be careful Claire…ok this is a long one so I’ll have to come back later and read it…THIS is to make up for the mean treat vid the other day LOL – Buddy coming out of the mudslide

  10. Shel
    Shel March 26, 2014 6:56 pm

    In the past 6-9 months, or whatever, I’ve managed to bang my toes a few times. Mostly it’s been when I’ve been barefooted, in a hurry, and not paying attention. Simple self-inflicted stupidity.

  11. Claire
    Claire March 26, 2014 7:07 pm

    naturegirl — Thank you for some good news. There’s been so little coming out of that mudslide; every story just gets worse and worse. Awful.

    I hope that dog got some water and is going to be okay. I hope his family was okay, too.

  12. Claire
    Claire March 26, 2014 7:09 pm

    Guys — I appreciate the concern about my owie. But it really is just an owie and will be fine. I only wrote about it to say I surprised myself by being such a wuss.

    Better hope there are no broken thumbs in my future.

  13. Ellendra
    Ellendra March 27, 2014 11:12 am

    Claire, get your foot x-rayed. You have a broken toe.

    And, in an emergency, anything that slows you down has the potential to become a serious problem. Get the minor things treated now, while they’re still minor.

    (A blogger I sometimes read just had a near-death experience from a cracked tooth!)

  14. Claire
    Claire March 27, 2014 12:01 pm

    Ellendra — Thank you. I’m watching carefully to make sure that foot doesn’t swell up further or develop any colors more “interesting” than the ones that are already there. I suspect you’re right about it being broken, but I just can’t bring myself to go to a doctor over a toe. (Now, if it had a rusty nail sticking out of it, then, yeah.) I’ll give it a few days to see what happens.

    A tooth, though? I agree: wouldn’t mess around with that. Have heard too many horror stories.

  15. jc2k
    jc2k March 27, 2014 1:14 pm

    Claire – go easy on that foot. I had an ex that did that same exact thing but powered through the pain only to find out she’d cracked a bone in her foot and then she ended up breaking it by walking on it. She ended up in a cast for six months.

  16. Shel
    Shel March 27, 2014 1:19 pm

    I agree with Ellendra. The problem with broken bones that aren’t somehow fixed in place is when they try to heal they develop growth on the broken areas. If they’re realigned properly early on, then pieces will fit together nicely. If not, then they might not fit together so nicely and may always be a problem. This means that if it’s not getting better – and it obviously isn’t – FIND SOMEBODY TO LOOK AT IT! Much preferably a podiatrist, since that’s exactly what they’re trained to do. Go no later than tomorrow, because if you don’t then you’ll have to wait ’till Monday. That will be much easier to do if you call today for an appointment (hint, hint). It isn’t correct to consider yourself a wuss because of an injured toe. Toes can really hurt. Athletes with “turf toe” can’t even play until the injury heals.

  17. Claire
    Claire March 27, 2014 1:47 pm

    You guys are scaring me now. (But for my own good, I suppose.)

    Still … I’m going to wait until tomorrow. If it’s getting better then, I’ll assume it’s just a sprain. If it’s getting uglier, I’ll believe you all and get it x-rayed.

    Where I might find a podiatrist within 100 miles of this burg, I don’t know …

  18. Pat
    Pat March 27, 2014 4:06 pm

    I concur with the above re: toes. I tried to reposition my foot while sitting in a chair, caught my little toe on the chair leg, and broke the toe. Tried to tough it out at first, and finally went to the doctor. It may not swell as much as a sprain, and may only start to discolor several days later, so you can’t always tell when it first happens. Have you iced it? Splint it with a tongue blade, at least while in the house, even if you don’t go to the doctor ― and keep the foot elevated as much as possible. And if you’re not driving, some of that good wine may help the pain.

    (BTW, no matter what the definition of a podiatrist, a good GP ― if you can find one anymore ― can take an X-ray, diagnose a toe fracture or sprain, and splint or cast the foot if needed. You *shouldn’t* need a specialist for that ― but that depends on what kind of MDs are in your area these days. They do like to pass patients around. )

  19. Claire
    Claire March 27, 2014 5:12 pm

    Hey, I like that idea of “treating” my hurt foot by applying wine to mouth! Wish I’d thought of that one, Pat. Haven’t iced it, but have elevated it for long stretches (which, since I’m lazy and have a sedentary job, is pretty easy).

    Seriously, a break might swell less than a sprain? That’s odd.

  20. Shel
    Shel March 27, 2014 5:47 pm

    I agree with the above; go see SOMEBODY, but probably not a hospital ER. One thing about leg elevation to remember is that if your knee is higher than your ankle, your foot probably won’t drain very well. But, just to lessen the tension, understand that none of anyone’s recommendations here are at all necessary to follow, especially if you plan on being non-ambulatory for the rest of your life.

  21. Ellendra
    Ellendra March 27, 2014 9:29 pm

    This isn’t a competition to see who can be the toughest 🙂 If there was such a competition, I wouldn’t want to win!!!

    (And if you won’t go for your own sake, do it for your doggies. They need you to be able to walk!)

  22. Pat
    Pat March 27, 2014 11:22 pm

    “Seriously, a break might swell less than a sprain? That’s odd.”

    I’ve seen it a number of times, on Orthopedic units and in ERs. It’s often why people don’t go to the hospital/doctor right after an accident ― they never think it’s “that bad.” It’s why I didn’t go at first, and I should have known better.

    Your toe(s) may not be broken (and a sprain may not heal any faster than a fracture anyway), but hobbling around without some support is not going to help in either case.

  23. Karen
    Karen March 28, 2014 4:41 am

    “Where I might find a podiatrist within 100 miles of this burg, I don’t know …”

    You could probably start with furrydoc for an Xray. Vets usually know quite a lot about almost everything.

  24. furrydoc
    furrydoc March 28, 2014 7:31 am

    How are those toes? I do happen to know someone with an x-ray machine. As for the table, maybe you could take up carving and turn those ugly legs into something interesting. The way it sits, it looks like a real toe buster!!

  25. MamaLiberty
    MamaLiberty March 28, 2014 12:57 pm

    I broke a toe (the big one) about 45 years ago, and then broke my leg (ankle) just 8 years ago. The toe took longer to get better, and still gives me problems today. I suspect that is largely because I didn’t take care of the toe, and did take care of the ankle.

    Get the ex-ray, then decide if it needs to be seen by a doctor. But don’t wait. If the edges of the break are not in good alignment you will have problems in the future and may not be able to jump or run, even if you can walk OK.

    And yes, a strain or sprain can easily cause more swelling and bruising than a frank broken bone. The strain or sprain is from stretched, stressed muscle and ligament tissues. Quite often, if the bone gives way, there is less stress on those tissues. If you ever see an orthopedist, they would be glad to show you on models and explain it better.

  26. MamaLiberty
    MamaLiberty March 28, 2014 1:09 pm

    An interesting web page I just found:

    there is pain while moving the sprained toe, but there is usually trouble moving the toe at all if its broken. This means that if you still have mobility in the toe (however painful), it is likely it is only sprained.

  27. Claire
    Claire March 28, 2014 2:39 pm

    Thank you, MamaLiberty. Good “toedoctor” list.

    It’s a sprain. I’ll live a long life and even run and jump again someday!

  28. Shel
    Shel March 28, 2014 5:31 pm

    I hope your self-diagnosis from the printed page is correct. It would do no harm to take Furrydoc up on her offer, but you seem determined not to go to anyone. We’re not in survival mode yet.

  29. kevin m
    kevin m March 29, 2014 9:44 am

    My brother dropped a quart can of pork and beans on my toe from counter height in 4th. grade. Even being a youngen it took 2 years to heal. Toe nail is still arched a bit because the doc said the bone broke and then healed pointing up. Get better.

  30. Shel
    Shel March 29, 2014 11:09 am

    I apologize for my recent tactlessly worded posting. It’s just that I’ve banged up the fifth toes on each foot. The first I was sure was broken; it wasn’t. The second I thought was broken; it was. But then I didn’t have the benefit of ML’s link 🙂 (still hope you’re right, though)

  31. Claire
    Claire March 29, 2014 1:55 pm

    I think it’s funny — but very sweet — that you guys are so worried about my toes. More worried than I am, apparently.

    They’re getting better, really. The colors are much less “interesting,” the pain far less, and the worst toe looks more like a marble now than like a … well, bigger marble. I’m kind of embarrassed about the whole thing. But thank you.

  32. Pat
    Pat March 29, 2014 11:56 pm

    Claire, I’m glad your toes are getting better.

    As for being embarrassed by the attention, don’t be. We just think it’s better to _know_ something than to speculate, wonder, or worry about it. Also, doing the wrong thing ― such as walking on a broken toe ― can often worsen a condition, making it harder to heal. And that could interrupt those nice, long walks with Ava and Robbie. But… advice is easy to give.

    Re: the table ― that thing looks heavy. Just lightening the color (by paint or stain) will improve it. It looks like a fun project to take on.

Leave a Reply