I noticed while putting on a pair of running tights the other day that I had a bunch of small bruises on my upper legs. It looked like I had repeatedly jabbed myself with a pencil eraser. They were all the same size, shape and at the same stage of healing. For the life of me, I have no idea how I got these black and blue marks. I thought about it for awhile – mainly because there’s not much else to occupy my brain right now. And came up with nothing. Then I started thinking how this has been a common occurrence throughout my life… how I would find these mysterious bruises and have no recollection of how I got them.
The idea that I could injure myself to the point of bruising but have no memory of the actual incident is slightly disturbing, considering that I have very clear memories of other kinds of injuries. For example, right before the shelter-in-place order came down, I had a few friends over for a BBQ since we had to cancel our annual spring training trip. I was using a mandoline to slice an onion and wasn’t paying attention – sure enough, the blade sliced through the top of my fingernail. A little alcohol, Neosporin and a bandaid and I was back in the kitchen. No harm, no foul. And even though my finger is perfectly fine now, I still remember what happened. There are lots of kitchen-related incidents – maybe I should say “accidents” – for which I have crystal clear recollection – exploding soup in a blender, slicing a bagel with a chef’s knife (requiring a call to 911 and several stitches), sizzle platter mishap at Chevys, etc. And I have other scrapes and scars where I know exactly what happened. Some of these things happened years and years ago. So what’s the story with black and blue marks – why can’t I remember what happened even though the injury just happened?
Since I’m talking about things that are painful, something happened yesterday that really hurt my wallet. Now – you all know that finding flour is nearly impossible. The last bag I bought over a month ago was special high performance bread flour and it cost me $6.99. That was steep but I figured it would be worth it since I was baking fresh bread on a weekly basis (and a good loaf of bread is around six bucks anyway). Fast forward to yesterday when I stopped at Market Hall for a few essentials and found that they had bread flour available! I was so excited as I’m almost out of flour and so I immediately grabbed a bag. It’s from some local mill in the Bay Area called The Midwife and the Baker. There was no price on the bag but I figured it couldn’t be much more than $6.99 – I mean, it’s still a 5lb bag of flour. So I’m checking out and nearly had a heart attack – the flour was… are you sitting down?? $13.95. Not a typo. $13.95. That’s thirteen dollars and ninety-five cents. For flour. And as painful as it was, I bought it. Because I want to keep baking bread. Here is a picture of the most expensive flour I’ve ever bought:
I like to think of myself as having a high threshold for pain. Accident in the kitchen? That’s what bandages and alcohol are for. Hit the pavement while out running? I pick myself up and keep going. Being “forced” to spend almost 14 bucks on flour? I suck it up. I mean, I’m sitting here on the couch next to Juno and he keeps farting but I refuse to move (and believe me, it stinks). But I have my limits. Which brings me to today’s list of things that I find painful:
- Unbuttered popcorn (I mean seriously, why even bother?)
- Dropping toast on the floor butter-side down
- Hot Snug breath (Juno needs to get his teeth cleaned)
- Missing pieces in jigsaw puzzles
- Cutting up an apple and finding that it’s rotten on the inside
- People who don’t clean up after their dogs (hello? West Oakland?)
- Realizing just how gray my hair is getting
- Missing my friends/family/colleagues
Yes, it is hard to be away from everyone. And now that the shelter-in-place order has been extended through the end of May in California, it’s going to be another long month of Snug and Bee. But I’ll try and keep things as real and as positive as possible. I’ve got my health, my dog, food in the fridge and toilet paper in the bathroom. The state will re-open – I just hope the bruises will heal and don’t leave too big a scar.