Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Respect the blade

I don't have any feeling in the pad of my right thumb and there is just one thing to blame.


I've always been careful with knives.  I keep mine sharp, I only use them for cutting food on approved surfaces, they don't go into the dishwasher, and they're stored carefully in a horizontal knife block similar to this one.
I love my under-cabinet knife block!
I was a little more cavalier with my food processor blade, however.  Oh, not this one.  I am always careful with this blade.

This is the little devil that got me.  And it was entirely my fault because this is how I tried to lift it from the bowl.
Do not attempt at home.  This is a dumb ass move.
Never, ever, EVER lift out the slicing blade with one hand.  That is exactly how I slipped and pulled my thumb right into the blade four years ago when I was making sauerkraut.  I knew immediately that it was a bad cut, clean but deep.  We rushed to Urgent Care, where the doctor decided that the best course was to glue the wound closed.

Two days later I awoke to a throbbing thumb: infection.  The doctor removed the glue and started me on antibiotics.  

Four years later I've still got a deep, thick scar in my thumb.  As often as I think about it, I roll a pen between my thumb and fingers to keep the tissue supple.  The nerves have regenerated a little, but not fully.  It feels like I have a very thick callous on my thumb.
See that half moon?  Scar tissue runs straight under it, like a semi-circle.  It sucks.
I didn't make sauerkraut again until last month.

You can bet your butt that I was extraordinarily careful.  I now treat that blade with the same respect as my knives, and handle it gingerly.

I won't be that stupid again.

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