I do not have Part 2 of Sex Pistol ready yet. I feel like I owe you, my non-existent readers, an explanation. By "non-existent readers" I mean, of course, me. I need to explain to myself why I've squandered another Thursday - Sunday writing period.
My day job was busy this week. Fine. It happens. But then I hurt my back at the gym on Thursday. How did I do it, you may ask? I was at the squat rack, doing Romanian dead lifts. That's the exercise where you stand up straight, holding a barbell by your waist, and you bend forward, then back up, working your hamstrings. It's imperative that you keep your spine perfectly straight when you do this exercise, because the slightest break in form could result in a serious back injury. And that's exactly what happened. I felt it immediately, stopped that exercise and continued with the rest of my workout.
Mistake #1: I should have went home right then, but I happen to be in love with a girl at the gym--have been for six months--and I wanted to stick around in case she approached me for sex.
The pain/stiffness didn't set in until that afternoon at work, and even then it was manageable. I was able to walk around (though at first I walked like grandpa Simpson, then after 200 feet I resumed a normal posture; I was like a living evolution chart!) and lay on the ground and stretch every few hours. I took some motrin or Advil or whatever the fuck it's called, and that helped a little. I skipped my AA meeting that night (the long walk and the grammar school chairs would have been too taxing), which sucked because Alan got his 6-year medallion, which I would have liked to have witnessed.
It also sucked because there are usually at least three hot chicks at that meeting. Hot, sober, angry chicks. Booya!
Instead I went home that night, ordered a medium pepperoni from Domino's and watched four old episodes of "Entourage".
Mistake #2: Everything from that previous sentence.
The next day, Friday, I felt better. Work was still busy but my back felt looser, even after sitting all day in that Filipino-made bullshit ergonomic chair I have. Or maybe I was just so busy I didn't even consider the pain, which could have been the case. I threw a little ice on it and spent most of the day yelling at my computer, throwing temper tantrums in front of my IT guy, and insulting innocent co-workers for no reason. I was pissed that I had work to do and couldn't do the Friday NY Times crossword. I missed the last AA meeting in the area, walked home, nuked some pasta, made a salad, beat off and watched 40 minutes of "Interview With A Vampire" on my DVR. I was asleep by 11.
Mistake #3: Nothing. Perfect Day.
Saturday I woke up feeling great. I actually got out of bed and walked to Dunkin Donuts in an almost upright manner. I lied in bed and read for a bit, drinking my coffee, then called a massage parlor in Chinatown (the name and number of which were procured from a fellow AA brother) and made an 11:30 appointment. I took a shower and walked there. It was beautiful out and I felt great, walking perfectly fine. The girl at the "Spa"'s reception desk was very cute. She walked me down into a subterranean room smaller than my bedroom and told me to take my clothes off, lay face down and wait. I did. Five minutes later another girl--this one not exactly cute, but more like a cross between Bruce Lee and 70s Elvis Presley--walked in, wearing cuffed sweatpants and a Russell Athletics t-shirt. The only English she knew was "sir", and "deep or stone". She spent the first 10 minutes trying to pop a zit on my back, then she got to work. And yes, there was a happy ending. I closed my eyes and pictured the girl from the front desk, and not Bruce Lee's bloated brother.
Afterward I went to Carson beach and lay flat on the stone wall that runs along its perimeter. I listened to music and looked at chicks and caught some rays. My back didn't hurt. It felt great, actually.
I went home and did something incredibly stupid. I PUT A HEATING PAD ON MY FUCKING BACK. I lay down and took a nap with A FUCKING HEATING PAD ON MY BACK.
Now it's time for Mistake #3: AFTER 24 HOURS IT'S ICE, NOT HEAT. Ever hear of the internet, fuckstick???
Immediately I started feeling pain, stiffness. I figured it was all part of the healing process. By the time I walked to my Saturday night AA meeting I was hunched over again. I had to stop and touch my toes a couple times. I sat through the meeting fine, but walking home was all grandpa Simpson again. I got back home, crawled up my stairs, and PUT THE FUCKING HEATING PAD UNDER MY BACK WHILE I LIED ON MY LIVING ROOM FLOOR. I hadn't realized Mistake #3 yet.
Like the genius I am, I microwaved the heating pad real good and slept on it, waking up a couple times throughout the night to re-zap it. By the time I woke up, this morning, I was immovable. I could barely even curl up in the fetal position. I walked to Dunkin Donuts all upright and stiff, as though I was holding in a massive crap. I got home, lied on the floor and stretched my back. Then I walked to the gym, and halfway there, after seeing my reflection in the EZ Storage doorway, I realized it was ridiculous. I couldn't even walk. How the fuck was I gonna lift heavy weight? I turned around and went home.
That was when Mistake #3 occurred to me. Maybe heat isn't a good idea this far into an injury, especially considering I was feeling great when I started using it, and now I feel like the Tin Man. So I began my ice regiment. I currently have four various ice packs in my freezer and I spend about 75% with one of them pressed again my lower back and the other 25% stretching. Maybe stretching isn't a good idea, either. Should I go for a walk or should I be resting? When I rest, should I lay flat or sit upright? When laying flat, should it be on my bed or on a more firm surface, like the sidewalk outside? Jesus Christ, I can't take these fucking options. When it comes to forks in the road I have a notorious history of choosing the wrong way. And no, I will not look on the internet for advice. The last time I did that I had just got out of detox and I was trying to find out how long the withdrawal would last. The first website I came upon informed me that my life would be hell for at least 5 years and that I should just kill myself. In retrospect, that was pretty accurate.
Alas. Nothing to do but nurse my wounds, watch bad TV and try and stay calm. The pain can't last forever. Or can it? Today was a beautiful day, probably the last beautiful day of the year. I was planning on going to the beach today, after going to the gym and taking a yoga class. Instead I stayed inside and felt sorry for myself. I'm going squirrelly. I'm getting cabin fever. I'm so bored I jerked off twice today to tranny porn. The only time I left my house was this morning, when I drove to Whole Foods for Pro Biotics. In the parking lot a man approached me and asked if I could give him, his wife and two sons a ride to Framingham, to a "small motel", as he kept referring to it. I looked over at his wife and kids. They all wore New England Patriots T-shirts and were locked in a group embrace, all three of them making these overly-dramatic sad faces, as though they were posing for a homeless family ad. He told me they had just arrived from Kissimmee, Florida, and now they were stuck in a Whole Foods Parking Lot in Newton. None of this made any sense to me. I sat in my Jeep, blocking the entrance to the parking lot, while my lower back was screaming at me to get the fuck away from this psychopath.
"I don't understand...what's in Framingham?" I asked, confused.
"A small motel," the man said, clearly annunciating the words as though I was deaf, or from another country.
I wanted to help, but something just didn't seem right. The only evident luggage the family possessed was a single black gym bag.
"I don't know, man. Framingham's quite a ways away--"
"Oh fuck this," the man spit out, then turned and walked away. I proceeded to park my Jeep and kill the ignition. But I stayed in it for a few minutes before getting out and going into the Whole Foods. I needed a moment to process it all.
Daniel Pellegrini is a recovering drug addict with an aggressive form of chronic bowel disease. That means he can't take painkillers after undergoing rectal surgery. He's here to show you just how beautiful life is.
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