August 30, 2004

Time flies

I have been blogging, in one fashion or another, for just over four years now. A lot has changed in such a short period of time; in the world, my nation, my own home, and within myself.

posted by retrophisch at 09:58 AM
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August 27, 2004

Boxer’s fracture

This Sunday will mark the passing of the third week since I injured my right hand. I play softball on my church’s co-ed team. I usually play third base, and was doing so on the 8th. During the first game of a double-header, we had a runner coming to third after a hit in to center field. The throw came in from one of our outfielders, and while trying to catch the ball and bring it down to make the tag, I caught too much of the ball with my unprotected hand rather than with the glove.

When the inning was over, I was done, for that game and the next. My hand spent the next couple of hours in ice. It started to bruise later that night, and by Monday night, my entire palm was bruised. My hand, mainly around the knuckle of my little finger and that entire side, was swollen. I could still move my little finger without much pain, and we all figured I had just severely bruised it.

The next weekend I was in Connecticut for a friend’s wedding. The hand was still bothering me, but the swelling was slowly receding, and the bruising wasn’t as noticeable. Then this past weekend came around, and things weren’t really getting much better. The swelling was majorly down from the initial injury, but some was still present, and I did have a wider range of motion with the little and ring fingers than I had the week before. What prompted me to finally call an orthopedist this past Wednesday was the fact that when I straightened out my fingers, the little finger didn’t quite line up with the rest.

It turns out I did fracture my hand, specifically the joint where my knuckle connects to my little finger. The doc said it’s called a boxer’s fracture, and is common in, of course, boxers, and others who practice martial arts. When one punches something, they tend to lead with the knuckle of the little finger, and if one punches something too hard, like say, a wall or car door, one will more than likely cause such an injury. I just happened to have a hard, but well-thrown, ball cause mine.

The fracture is already healing. The doctor said the swelling those first few days may have actually helped, as it limited my movement of that finger and knuckle. If I had come to see him that first week, I would have gotten a cast. If had shown up the week after, he likely would have put my hand in a removable splint. As it is now, doing either wouldn’t really aid in the healing process, so we left it as is. He was impressed that I was able to shake his hand when he first came in to the examination room, and commented that I didn’t seem to have much of a problem with my grip. He did say I will have to avoid certain activities for the next four to six weeks, including softball (the fall season starts next week), but otherwise things are proceeding fine.

Both my wife and my mom called this one correctly, thinking I may have broken one of the smaller bones in my hand. So the lesson here, fellas, is listen to Dr. Mom and/or Dr. Wife. They seem to have a sense for these things…

posted by retrophisch at 10:00 PM
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August 26, 2004

Trade tricks

Matthew Baldwin, Tricks of the Trade:


Patients will occasionally pretend to be unconscious. A surefire way to find them out is to pick up their hand, hold it above their face, and let go. If they smack themselves, they’re most likely unconscious; if not, they’re faking.

I also liked Newspaper Headline Writer, but the Nurse trick was the one that had me laughing out loud.

posted by retrophisch at 12:52 AM
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August 24, 2004

80s throwbacks

If you, like I, had your formative years during the 1980s, then 80s Tees can fulfill your desire to be a Material Girl. Or guy.

My personal favorite is actually one from the last year of the 80s, 1990. Size XXL, if anyone is feeling generous…

posted by retrophisch at 12:51 AM
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August 17, 2004

What a night for the Rangers

The Texas Rangers baseball club, that is.

Courtesy of FranX, the Official Retrophisch™ Statistician, here’s the low-down on the massive 16-4 victory tonight over the Cleveland Indians:

  • Nathan “Buck” Showalter records his 700th victory as a manager.
  • Mark Teixeira is the second Ranger to hit for the cycle. The first was Oddibe McDowell in 1985, also against the Indians. (The cycle, for those who may not know, consists of getting at least one each in a single game: a single, a double, a triple, and a home run.)
  • Teixeira’s triple was his first of the season.
  • Teixeira had the first four-hit game of his career.
  • Gary Matthews, Jr. hit his 10th homer of the year. That makes 10 Rangers players with at least 10 homeruns — matching the major league record last set by Cincinnati and Baltimore in 2000.
  • Teixeira saw a career-high of seven RBIs.
  • Kevin Mench was a triple shy of the cycle.
posted by retrophisch at 11:58 PM
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August 06, 2004

Mars and Venus

Let’s say a guy named Roger is attracted to a woman named Elaine. He asks her out to a movie; she accepts; they have a pretty good time.

A few nights later he asks her out to dinner, and again they enjoy themselves. They continue to see each other regularly, and after a while, neither one of them is seeing anybody else.

Then, one evening when they’re driving home, a thought occurs to Elaine, and, without really thinking, she says it aloud: “Do you realize that, as of tonight, we’ve been seeing each other for exactly six months?”

And then there is silence in the car…

To Elaine, it seems like a very loud silence. She thinks to herself: Jeez, I wonder if it bothers him that I said that.

Maybe he’s been feeling confined by our relationship. Maybe he thinks I’m trying to push him into some kind of obligation that he doesn’t want, or isn’t sure of.

And Roger is thinking: Gosh. Six months.

And Elaine is thinking: But, hey, I’m not so sure I want this kind of relationship, either. Sometimes I wish I had a little more space, so I’d have time to think about whether I really want us to keep going the way we are, moving steadily forward. I mean, where are we going? Are we just going to keep seeing each other at this level of intimacy? Are we heading toward marriage? Toward children? Toward a lifetime together? Am I ready for that level of commitment? Do I really even know this person?

And Roger is thinking: So that means it was…let’s see…February when we started going out, which was right after I had the car at the dealer’s, which means…lemme check the odometer. Whoa! I am way overdue for an oil change here.

And Elaine is thinking: He’s upset. I can see it on his face. Maybe I’m reading this completely wrong. Maybe he wants more from our relationship, more intimacy, more commitment. Maybe he has sensed—even before I sensed it—that I was feeling some reservations. Yes, I bet that’s it. That’s why he’s so reluctant to say anything about his own feelings. He’s afraid of being rejected.

And Roger is thinking: And I’m gonna have them look at the transmission again. I don’t care what those morons say, it’s still not shifting right. And they better not try to blame it on the cold weather this time. What cold weather? It’s 87 degrees out, and this thing is shifting like a garbage truck, and I paid those incompetent thieves $600.

And Elaine is thinking: He’s angry. And I don’t blame him. I’d be angry, too. I feel so guilty, putting him through this, but I can’t help the way I feel. I’m just not sure.

And Roger is thinking: They’ll probably say it’s only a 90-day warranty. Scumbags!

And Elaine is thinking: Maybe I’m just too idealistic, waiting for a knight to come riding up on his white horse, when I’m sitting right next to a perfectly good person, a person I enjoy being with, a person I truly do care about, a person who seems to truly care about me. A person who is in pain because of my self-centered, school girl romantic fantasy.

And Roger is thinking: Warranty? They want a warranty? I’ll give them a warranty. I’ll take their warranty and stick it right up their…

“Roger,” Elaine says aloud.

“What?” says Roger, startled.

“Please don’t torture yourself like this,” she says, her eyes beginning to brim with tears. “Maybe I should never have… Oh God, I feel so…” (She breaks down, sobbing.)

“What?” says Roger.

“I’m such a fool,” Elaine sobs. “I mean, I know there’s no knight. I really know that. It’s silly. There’s no knight, and there’s no horse.”

“There’s no horse?” asks Roger.

“You think I’m a fool, don’t you?” Elaine says.

“No!” replies Roger, glad to finally know the correct answer.

“It’s just that… it’s that I… I need some time,” Elaine says.

(There is a 15-second pause while Roger, thinking as fast as he can, tries to come up with a safe response. Finally he comes up with one that he thinks might work.)

“Yes,” he answers.

(Elaine, deeply moved, touches his hand.)

“Oh, Roger, do you really feel that way?” she asks.

“What way?” says Roger.

“That way about time,” says Elaine

“Oh,” says Roger. “Yes.”

(Elaine turns to face him and gazes deeply into his eyes, causing him to become very nervous about what she might say next, especially if it involves a horse. At last she speaks.)

“Thank you, Roger,” she says.

“Thank you,” replies Roger.

Then he takes her home, and she lies on her bed, a conflicted, tortured soul, and weeps until dawn.

Roger gets back to his place, he opens a bag of Doritos, turns on the TV, and immediately becomes deeply involved in a rerun of a tennis match between two Czechs he never heard of. A tiny voice in the far recesses of his mind tells him that something major was going on back there in the car, but he is pretty sure there is no way he would ever understand what, and so he figures it’s better if he doesn’t think about it.

The next day Elaine will call her closest friend, or perhaps two of them, and they will talk about this situation for six straight hours. In painstaking detail, they will analyze everything she said and everything he said, going over it time and time again, exploring every word, expression, and gesture for nuances of meaning, considering every possible ramification. They will continue to discuss this subject, off and on, for weeks, maybe months, never reaching any definite conclusions, but never getting bored with it, either.

Meanwhile, Roger, while playing racquetball one day with a mutual friend of his and Elaine’s, will pause just before serving, frown, and say, “Norm, did Elaine ever own a horse?”

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the difference between men and women.

(Thanks, Rolf!)

posted by retrophisch at 04:38 PM
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August 04, 2004

I have weird friends

Or at the least, they find some weird stuff.

posted by retrophisch at 10:18 AM
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