Sunday, September 12, 2010

Ending on a High Note

It was only a matter of time. (Please note that if you are squeamish about blood, you might want to skip this post. I'm looking at you, Dad.)

As someone who's known myself for nearly 27 years, I can't say that I'm terribly surprised that I was the first person in class to sustain a flesh wound that required medical attention. I know that I am a bit...ahem... clumsy at times, but somehow I thought that since I've managed to cook for myself for years without chopping off a finger that I'd be ok.

First of all, apologies for my delay in Friday posting. I was busy researching my paper on the papaya and nursing the above wound with naps and red wine. It was serious business, but I'm happy to say that I think I'll survive.

I don't have a very cool story to go with this. I wasn't racing the clock in a potato-dicing competition. See, in class, we have this rule that we can't put our knife kits on the table. We also don't really want to put them on the floor (because it is gross), so it becomes very awkward to maneuver in and out of them. Friday, while putting my gigantic chef knife away, I nicked the tip of my finger on my tiny, tiny paring knife.

DANG. Those things are sharp. The knife is so sharp that cutting myself didn't hurt at all, but I had a vague sensation that something bad was about to happen. I pulled my finger out of my knife bag and saw a tiny incision on my pointer.

Not so bad, I thought, until a split second later when blood started spilling out at a comical rate. Definitely a bleeder. I ran to the first aid kit to try to get a butterfly bandage but it was impossible to get anything to stick to my finger because it was bleeding so fast. I wrapped it in a wad of paper towels, which were immediately deep red.

I asked my chef if she had any advice to make my hand stop bleeding. In retrospect, this is a ridiculous question, but I really didn't want to go to the nurse. She said that her advice was to go to the nurse immediately. Dang.

The nurse looked slightly horrified (which I found surprising -- is this really the worst knife wound she's seen?). She then proceeded to inform me that if my hand didn't stop bleeding, I'd have to get a stitch or two to close it up. And that the doctor had left for the day, so I'd have to go to the hospital. They had already sent two kids to the hospital that week for stitches.

Seriously. Going to the hospital on the fourth day of class for cutting myself on a knife with a blade the size of a piece of JuicyFruit -- I would never hear the end of that one. Luckily the bleeding slowed down after awhile, and she gave me the hot bandage job that you see above. I chose red because it is my favorite color, but it also adds a little extra drama to the whole situation, don't you think? The upshot was since I cut myself at 12:40 and spent the next 30 minutes at the nurse, I didn't have to do much cleaning of the lab.

Anyway - sorry this post ended up being so long. As a reward for reading the whole thing, here is a picture of some quiche that I made in class:


  1. I'm really glad you explained the bandage was red to begin with. I thought you'd turned it red yourself, and was concerned.

  2. Why can't you put knife bag on table? Shouldn't all things involved with your knifes be done in such a manner as to reduce the chances of a accidental cut. Don't make me call OSHA on your Chief.

  3. If you go to Bass Masters (or any other good hunting and fishing store) you can buy a fish filet glove (kevlar) which really cuts down on the knife cuts (particularly when you use a mandolin without a guard) - but the downside is although you would have fewer cuts you would also be laughed out of class (You would be proud of me - I read the whole article)

  4. The lucky woman who cut herself the first day of class ALSO cut herself on the subsequent second AND third be happy!

  5. OK. it's really NOT nice either to your father or your aunt (also squeamish) to start with a photo that might be a bloody bandage instead of just a red one. I hope they gave you a lollypop

  6. Alice I missed your Blog on Friday. I have been reading it everyday and I think it would make a great book. Sorry you didn't write because of your finger- I thought you were out for the weekend drinking instead of eating.

  7. I am only anonymous because I don't know what those other profile's are. It is Helen

  8. P -- I agree! Someone else cut himself today the same way. I myself avoided using knives for the day. Probably not the best tactic.

    J -- No lollipops... but I did already eat a couple fo shortbread cookies, which eased the pain somewhat ;)

    Dad -- Kevlar gloves are for wimps!

  9. Wimps who do not like to bleed
    Proud to be one
    Your mother bought her own Mandolin because she was afraid of mine (mine is real her's is plastic from BJ's) she promptly cut her finger