A Trivial Comedy for serious people archives

Little wound

Let me tell you about my happy fun time. Rather, how I wounded myself on Monday.

I stepped on a quarter sized piece of glass that was in my dorm's hallway. It didn't go in all the way, mercifully, maybe about a third. It started bleeding profusely, and I tried to catch the blood in my hands but some of it pooled on the floor. I started to cry out of miserable self pity. There are no pieces of glass stuck in my foot. It's a nice clean cut, and now it looks like a little bleeding mouth on my foot (I can even make it talk...!). Public Safety drove me to the health center (this has easily been the best part of the experience, being chauffered around by Public Safety), where they bandaged it and put steri-strips on it instead of sutures.

I was walking around on crutches for two days. People are horrified when they see you on crutches, and I guess rightly so. My boss nearly leapt in the air. I usually relish the idea of an injury, because I always think that I crave sympathy. But I find this isn't true, and I mostly felt like a sham for being so noticeably injured. "Look," I say. "I have a wound the size of a centimeter, it's just in a bad place on my foot and it will heal faster if I keep my weight off it. That's all." I was firm with people, I told them the truth, and I didn't exaggerate. It wasn't that bad of a cut. I was lucky. It isn't all roses - it's been three days and it's still oozing blood.

I learned how to use the crutches, though. You don't rest on the under-arm bit, you hold yourself up with your arms and shoulders. I'm stronger than I used to be, but I am not strong enough to maintain that enough to travel great distances. Every night, I came home and lay in bed. My shoulders ached worse than anything my foot could do to me. I skipped meals, not because my foot hurt me (that's what my friends thought) but because the thought of hauling myself down to the dining hall was more than I could take.

I've been reading the New Testament for well, my New Testament class. What astounds me most of all is that these incredibly charged, violent, and deeply emotional scenes are related in a few lines, in half a sentence. I'm sure my watered down, academic translation of the texts adds to the feeling that they are talking about dramatic events in extraordinarily non-plussed tones. He spends about two lines in the desert, being tempted by Satan. Oh, she asked for the head of John the Baptist on a platter and he gave it to her, now let's move on. He betrayed Jesus with a kiss in the garden, NEXT! But I slow down and try to imagine the scene, and realize why there are so many paintings of these events. I come at this backwards. I am more likely to be acquainted with Christian artwork about the gospels than the texts themselves. I leapt to read the scene where Jesus sleeps through a storm in a boat while the Apostles fret, because I had scene a Medieval painting of that scene last year.

I'm always sort of startled by the demons. They come out of nowhere, recognizing Jesus while none of his Apostles do. They scream out, and it makes me jump. They are one of the most lively bits of the Gospels.

And I like that it's a secret. Oh, there are all these theories about why Jesus doesn't want people to know that he is the Messiah, but I just like to think that he would say "It's just between you and me." And maybe he would wink, except that seems tremendously out of character. I wish he'd wink.

By the way, he absolutely terrifies me. He's so much less warm and cuddly in these books. He cuts a spectacular figure, but I don't know if I could be anywhere near him. I don't know what to make of the Son of Man. He has authority. The demons listen.

2002-09-18, notes

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