Thursday, December 18, 2008
Ho, ho . . . ohhhhhh
So I had a few friends over for "rappin' and [gift] wrappin'" last night - margaritas and Mexican munchies, nothing fancy - and Parnell offered to take the kids to Movie Tavern for dinner and an animated film for the duration of the party. Before he left, I asked him to clean up the front porch (move some potted plants and an assemblage of the boys' sporting goods to the backyard, etc.). Somehow, this was interpreted as "borrow an extension ladder and hang Christmas garland in a huge hurry, without a spotter" - FORESHADOWING ALERT #1. (It's been rainy and cold for days - hardly outdoor decorating weather - and the big trees in the front yard just saw fit to dump their leaves, which were clumped in wet, SLIPPERY piles everywhere - FORESHADOWING ALERT #2.) I happened to be walking through the living room just in time to hear what can best be described as "whoosh, THUD, ohhhhhh." I've been advised that "Parnell fell off of a ladder" is an incorrect summary of what occurred, because the bottom of the ladder slipped backwards and Parnell simply went down with it. Fortunately, he landed ON the ladder - had the ladder not been between him and the sidewalk, he would have landed face down, the front steps probably would have hit him mid-throat, and you'd be receiving notice of funeral arrangements in lieu of a Christmas card (or a donation solicitation from the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation). Instead, he broke his left arm above the wrist and did a number on a couple of ribs.
Considering what could have happened, it's been pretty easy for us to take the whole thing in stride (well, now that we've moved beyond the, "What in HADES were you thinking?" lecture - or series of lectures, it's hard to say - I took a few breaths here and there, but the sum total of the lecturing/filibuster went on for roughly eighteen hours, with assists from my mom, his mom, various women friends, neighbors and co-workers, the kids' teachers, and the the all-female staff of our orthopedic surgeon's office). Who knew that Vicodin only costs $4.71? And, after several years of threatening to decorate a "Mardi Gras tree" like the ones that you see in the windows of the homes around the Bishop's Palace in Galveston, it looks like I'll have my opportunity - the cast will be with us until mid-January, and there's no way I'm wrangling our behemoth of a tree out to the carriage house, so why not throw some beads on it?
Please refrain from teasing the poor guy - trust me, that ground has been covered. Just forward the name of a good Christmas light hanger before December '09 rolls around . . . .