As is well known, I don't cook. I can cook. I just don't. My dear husband, on the other hand, cooks up a storm. I sometimes am his sous chef, which means we get to spend some quality time together chatting and chopping.
Last night was a bit different. I'd had a rather busy day. The hubby had spent a good portion of his afternoon making chicken pot pies. My assignment was to make the salad to go along with them. Salad, I can handle. It doesn't count as cooking in the hubby's book, but he does like my salads. Truthfully, I just throw in whatever he says to put into it, so t's not so much "making" a salad as it is "assembling" the salad. It was too early for dinner when we sat down to chat -- we usually eat around 7 or so -- but the hubby told me to make the salad. "Nah, it's too early," I said. "When are you gonna make it," he said. "In a while."
He was restless. He realized that he had some tomatoes that he wanted to use before they went bad, so he set to making tomato/cucumber/sweet onion salad. For the record, I consider both tomatoes and cucumbers to be yucky. As in, they are at the top of my Yucky List. He understands this, so when he makes the salad, he fixes mine first and adds the yucky stuff later. Sweet man, he is. Well, he decided to try slicing the cucumbers with his newest kitchen gadget: a mandolin.
For those of you who are less informed, a mandolin is a device that scares me to death. It looks like some sort of medieval torture device. I tend to stay away from these types of things. Jim sat in his chair studying it and saying "I sure wish I had the instruction manual." Torture device without instruction manual? Double scary. I mentioned that he could probably find it online, but also asked where it had gone to, because he'd just taken the darned thing out of the box. I heard him mutter something about having found the manual while I headed off to put clothes in the dryer.
I swear I wasn't gone more than three minutes, but I came back and heard him saying something about slicing part of his finger off. WHAT? I ran up to the kitchen to find him with his hand under the faucet, with blood red water running down the drain. "Oh my God," I said. "Let me see it." Well, let me tell you, it was only a flesh wound, but it was an impressive flesh wound, because he now was missing a fair chunk of the side of his thumb. And oh, did I mention that it was bleeding profusely? "We need to go to the ER," I said. "They aren't gonna be able to stitch it, but they're gonna have to stop the bleeding." At this point, the Marine in him kicked in and he said "getthehellouttahere" (always said as one word). "I don't need to go to the ER. It would've been fine but I didn't use the safety shield. It'll be ok."
I handed him a paper towel, then sat down and waited.
He ran it under the sink for a while, then finally took my advice to put pressure on it. "Put pressure on it for ten minutes solid, and then we'll go to the ER when the bleeding doesn't stop." Now, imagine telling a stubborn Marine with ADHD to sit still for ten minutes. In short: it ain't gonna happen. He'd hold pressure for a minute, then check. Drip.........drip............drip. "We need to go to ER." "Getthehellouttahere. It's gonna stop." Drip........drip........drip. "Why don't you make the salad?" "I'll make it when we get back from the ER." "We aren't going to the ER. It's fine." Drip............drip............drip. "You know you're on Plavix and aspirin, right? You know those are blood thinners, right?" "Getthehellouttahere. It's fine.
"You know, it's been a half an hour and it hasn't even slowed down, right?" "It'll be fine." I raised an eyebrow, poured myself a glass of water, sat back and waited. "Make the salad," he said. "Nope, if I make it now, it'll wilt before we get back from the ER." "I don't need to go to the ER." He changed the paper towel, because the second one was now soaked, and he needed a third. "It'll stop." I sat back and waited. Drip...........drip...........drip. It was running down his hand and wrist, and soaking into the placemat in front of him. Drip............drip........drip.
An hour went by. Drip..........drip.........drip. "Wow," he said. "It really isn't stopping." "You're right dear." "Make the salad." "Nope. Not till we get back from the ER." He glared momentarily, then looked down at his thumb. "Wow, I really did a job on it, didn't I?" "Yep." Drip.........drip........drip. "Give me another paper towel." Silence as I handed it to him.
Finally, ten minutes later, a revelation: "You know what, I think we are gonna have to go to the ER." "Ya think?" He laughed. "OK, OK, you're right. I'm gonna have to go. And yes, I know you'll say I told you so." "No dear, I just want you to take care of yourself. So off we went to the ER. He mused "I wonder where the missing skin is. Did you see it in the cucumbers?" "Nope," I said. "It's probably on the mandolin." We were there for an hour; they popped some Gelfoam on it, wrapped it up like a cartoon character's thumb after a mishap with a hammer, and we were ready to go. I wrapped my arms around his neck and murmured into his ear, "now do you believe that I just wanted to take care of you?" "Yes," he said. "Oh," I said, "one more thing. I told you so."
They could hear us laughing in the lobby.
We were still laughing when we left, because I kept asking him my typical questions like "do you need a wheelchair?" "Are you dizzy?" "Do you need an ambulance transport home?" All were met with "getthehellouttahere." Can't blame a girl for trying. I got him home safely and he, of course, told me to make the salad. I followed him into the kitchen a minute later, and he pointed. "Look." "What?" "There's the missing skin." And I'll be darned, there it was. A nice little fileted piece of Jim-flesh, about the size of a fingernail, sitting right there on the counter. "Well, are you gonna eat it or what? Why's it on the counter? Do you want me to add it to the salad?"
He mentioned something about me being disgusting as he threw it away, but hey, I'm not the one who put it on the counter. And hey, don't joke about stuff like that with a nurse, because our sense of humor is totally different than other, more normal peoples'.There may or may not have been a joke or two about it being "only a flesh wound." I did, however, get my comeuppance. More on that tomorrow.