Show Us Your Scars

Probably the hardest fact to come to grips with, at least for men as they get older, is that they aren’t 21 anymore. Now this can manifest itself in several areas; the pretty girls you pass on the street don’t check you out like in years past (female sales clerks call you “sir”, oh god), you start to notice all the erectile dysfunction, AARP, and supplemental vitamin commercials, and the inevitable aches and pains from doing mundane tasks become an irritant. But what really hits home and rattles your mortality cage is an unexpected surgery, welcome to my world.

A few weeks ago I went down hard on the tennis court, blowing out my right knee. Considering I’m mid-fifties, never had a broken bone, surgery or any serious injury of any kind in my life, I was not happy. Knowing that here in the Bay Area we have some of the best sports medicine clinics in the country, and getting some good referrals from ex jocks, I found a good surgeon who advised that he would have to do some major patella tendon reconstruction. Patience is not one of my strong suits but he was optimistic that I could be back playing in 6 months so about 2 weeks ago I went under the knife and have been bed ridden since, hence the lack of any real posting.

My Kindle, my laptop, and a dotting wife has helped a lot, but this full leg brace and not being allowed to put any weight down has really sucked, and I got a few more months of this to do. The instant video library on Amazon Prime (mid way through getting reintroduced to the best show on TV, NYPD Blue) has been a life saver, and I’m trying to do this whole ordeal sans any serious pain medication.

I guess I’m lucky, out of warranty and not needing any serious body work until now. I figure most guys here are either Gen Y or Gen X (even some baby boomers like myself) and I’m sure there are some great surgery stories out there. Here’s your chance, sure, I’ll take any run of the mill back, heart or brain surgery stories, but there has to be something hair raising or salacious, like you banging a super model when her husband came in mid hump and you broke both legs jumping out of a 4 story window but still managed to crawl home and call all your buddies to brag about it, or you got into a knife fight with 4 gang bangers, not only kicking all their asses, but took one an inch from your heart, not knowing about until the paramedic saw blood on your shirt. All braggarts are welcome.

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    lets see
    standing in the 4 way of town in just my shorts, blind drunk at 3 am, with my AK shooting a stop sign full of holes.
    getting shot at in Hannibal Missouri for messing with a married woman in a bike/blues bar….
    the 3 sisters i nailed… of course a few years apart, had to wait till the other 2 became of age…………….
    oh and i hit 39 years of age this year,, i don not know how the fuck i stayed alive to reach it. Last week i went to get a MRI on my knees, it seems i ripped the cartilage in both knees… joy.

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  2. CM

    Sorry to hear of your injury Rich, that’s horrible. My history of injuries is pretty dull I’m afraid. Usually sports related, most often ankles). I did break my arm when I was 8, trying to do a standing backflip. Broke some fingers doing dumb shit.

    Loved NYPD, miss it a great deal. Southland is a pretty bloody good show which reminds me of it (although set in LA). The Wire reigns supreme! (Although I’ve just started watching The Hour and all I see is McNulty when Dominic West is on screen) I just finished the first 3 season of Sons of Anarchy which I’ve also really enjoyed (it’s obvious that it’s made by the dude behind The Shield).

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  3. ryansparx

    I’ve broken my arm clean in half before and separated my sternum once (that hurt), but the only actual surgical procedure I’ve ever had was probably my post-birth circumcision.

    Of course, they almost gave up after they dulled 3 scalpels on that one and had to finish it off alternating between a plasma torch and power sander. But I must say, the craftsmanship is exquisite.

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  4. Mississippi Yankee

    Broke my neck the night before Labor Day in 1983. I was stretched out for 5 days with 12 lbs weight to re-align my vertebrata then they wired my neck together and took some bone from my hip to fuse it altogether. Spent nine months in a cast (plastic w/ Velcro). The only time I was allowed to take it off was to bathe. Have some lose of mobility in my neck but a lot less then you would think.

    And as you may have noticed hardly no drain bramage too.

    Fortunately my ex-wife still had me on her health insurance.

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  5. richtaylor365 *

    Of course, they almost gave up after they dulled 3 scalpels on that one and had to finish it off alternating between a plasma torch and power sander

    See, now this is what I’m talking about.

    Ryan, they used a propeller blade from an old B-29, fully throttled, to do mine. I had it done during a commercial break of a football game with a couple shots of tequila as prep, hardly memorable.

    Spent nine months in a cast (plastic w/ Velcro).

    Alright, I’ll STFU now re: any discomfort I’m going through, holy crap.

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  6. Seattle Outcast

    Let’s see…replacement ACL in my right knee from a skiing accident (with a couple bolts to hold in all in place), spondylolithesis at L5-S1 that requires a pair of steel rods to fix (not quite bad enough to NEED it yet), and enough lower back arthritis (courtesy of being rear-ended 18+ times in traffic) to make the doctor look up and say “you walked in?” when I showed up for a steroid injection into my spine.

    Add in some other sports injuries, a kidney stone, large variety of cuts and contusions, sprains, and not quite getting killed doing some really stupid stuff when younger, and I wonder how it is I’m still alive, much less walking around mostly pain-free all day.

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  7. Seattle Outcast

    Of course, they almost gave up after they dulled 3 scalpels on that one and had to finish it off alternating between a plasma torch and power sander. But I must say, the craftsmanship is exquisite.

    I get mine refinished with a diamond polisher every two years….

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  8. CM

    My eyes are ceramic. Caught a bazooka round at Little Big Horn. Or was it Okinawa? The one without the Indians.


    I almost fell through a hole in the ice in Stockholm with a heavy pack on my back. I was doing that windmilling arm action in a desperate act to not over-balance. That would have pretty much been the end of that I reckon.

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