Thursday, January 20, 2011


For the past few weeks I’ve been staying off the roads for running. The snowy trails have proven to be much more entertaining than boring asphalt and sidewalk. Today though, I hit the road for a few sloppy miles through Germantown and Mt. Airy.

Apparently I’d forgotten about yesterday’s ice storm. Instead of proper footwear for slush and ice I tied on a pair of marathon flats. Brilliant. Within a few feet of my front door the slipping commenced, my feet were soaked and my toes started freezing.

I worked my way down to a main road, dodging dirty snow and small sheets of ice, occasionally thinking that skis would have been more appropriate footwear. As I plugged along, the sidewalk went from regular boring cement to slate. Broken, chipped slabs for a few hundred yards.

I hadn’t run on this section of road for months, maybe even a year. I thought back to the last time I could remember running there -- last winter after the feet of snow stacked for months in Philadelphia began to melt.

The 2009-2010 winter in Philly was epic. Storm after storm pounded the area and I got most of my exercise shoveling snow. Finally, enough snow was gone that getting in an actual run became possible. I remember running along the broken sidewalk at a good clip, happy to not have to worry about leaping over snow piles, vaguely aware that I was zipping past cars stopped in rush hour traffic.

And then, suddenly, I was on the ground. Not even a flash of “(Fill in your favorite expletive here)!! I am falling!” went through my head. I banged my knee and skidded to a stop on my side. I knew right away that I had bloodied my knee. Fortunately I was freezing and couldn’t feel much and I was otherwise okay. I got up, took a moment to feel embarrassed that I had bit it in front of a line of cars and then had no other choice than to continue on my way home. Fortunately, it was only about a mile so I sucked it up and ran as fast as I could, eager to get home to survey the damage.

I stepped into the front door and rolled up the left leg of my running tights. Sure enough, a bloody knee, but it didn’t look too bad at all. Limped over to the medicine cabinet, smooshed some gauze onto the booboo and the bleeding easily stopped.

As I began to thaw I noticed that my left buttoxical region felt weird. A bit naked.

“Uh, I think I hurt my butt,” I thought and decided I’d figure it all out in the shower.

And then I walked past a mirror in our bedroom … got a glimpse of what I apparently put on display for a large chunk of Germantown for the last mile of my run.

My entire left butt was hanging out. Like, half of my entire ass, complete with a nasty cut with a few small pebbles in it.

When I fell I managed to tear my running tights but, because I was already so cold and freezing, I didn’t notice.

I thought I was pretty embarrassed when I fell. Realizing I ran home unintentionally and unknowingly nekkid wasn’t too fun, either.

As an added bonus, I couldn’t get the bleeding to stop. I cleaned it, put pressure on it, laid on it, called my doctor friends who suggested a trip to the adult ER, was amazingly late for work and finally wrapped my lower half in enough gauze to make a cozy quilt for the entire Duggar family before deciding what to do next. I didn’t want to spend the day sitting in an ER while some 25-year-old resident decided whether they needed to stitch my badonkadonk (sp?). Instead I called a friend who is married to one of the attendings in the pediatric hospital where I work.

“Think your husband would mind looking at a cut I got out on a run today to see if I need stitches?”
“Nope. Just go to his clinic when you get here. Where’s the cut?”
“My butt.”
“Ok. He’s in clinic until noon.”

The definition of a good friend is someone who doesn’t hate you when you ask their spouse to check out your butt.

The doc said I could get stitches if I wanted less of a scar but that it would soon stop bleeding on its own and would heal mostly okay. A few of the nurses I work with gave me some sort of magic tape and, sure enough, the bleeding stopped. Still have a scar that is pretty gross but knowing I ran around the ‘hood with my ass hanging out is even nastier.


Abby said...

When I first read this, I thought you'd done it again yesterday - glad to re-read and see it was a flashback!

Anonymous said...

Epic. This gives new definition to the Chilly Cheeks 7.2-miler. I lack the right shoes for snow running so I go out in my normal running shoes, try to stick to the roads, and feel kind of adventurous while bounding through snow drifts.

Natalia said...

Oh my! I really enjoyed this post as your writing is very entertaining - but I am sorry for your ills! Sounds as though it all worked out well. It must have been bad though to warrant stitches. Good to see it has not put you off running through the snow!

Mallory said...

That tattoo says "A prayer for the wild at heart kept in cages" -- I got the idea from Angelina Jolie but it's from a Tennessee Williams play. I think it was intended for animal abuse but it makes me think about the population I work with and just remembering to have hope for them. I have 9 tattoos total. There are a few more that I'd like!!!

Laurie said...

Abby, I would hang up my running shoes for good if I do this twice!

Julie said...

buttoxical. I love that word!