Zev News – September 2010


Benjamin had been running cross-country Mondays, Wednesdays Thursdays and Saturdays.  Usually Jackie would go with them and run or hike while he was practicing.  The location of practices changes everyday, rotating between half a dozen practice sites to these sites are about three blocks from our house.  Easy walking distance on Thursday (9/2) Jackie had a sisterhood board meeting, and thus didn't go to practice the Benjamin practice was at the closer of the two sites near our house and says she sent Benjamin off to walk to practice by himself.  20 minutes later, we hear sounds at the front door, and in walks Benjamin followed shortly by the team mom, Meg.  Benjamin had left for practice at the last possible moment and try to make up time by running their this strategy backfired on him when he encountered a gravitational singularity and took at tumble wiping out a significant amount of skin on his elbow.  He continued on to practice, the consensus was that it needed to be cleaned up better than can be done at practice and Meg volunteered to drive him home. 


We cleaned him up and had them soak his elbow.  He said his left hand hurt, which didn't surprise us.  The next morning, his hand still hurt.  Jackie drove him to school, but when she got to work, she called Marc and said she wanted Marc to take Benjamin to see the doctor after school.  Marc said he was just going to wait and see how it went.  The Jackie pointed out that 1) today was Friday of the three-day weekend and 2) we were planning on spending that night and the next two days square dancing, which involves a lot of shaking hands.  Benjamin may have hurt his left hand, but you use your left hand a lot in square dancing.  So after school, Marc took Benjamin and to see the doctor and our education in scaphoid fractures began.  It turns out, there is a bone in your wrist called a scaphoid bone that is instrumental in giving your wrist flexibility.  This bone only has blood supply on one side and if the bone gets cracked you can end up with a piece of bone with no blood supply.  Worse yet, cracks in this bone are easy to miss.  So if someone comes in with wrist pain after a fall, the doctors cast the wrist even if they don't see anything on the x-ray, because if they miss the break the piece of bone without a blood supply can die, and that is very bad.  Indeed, they did not see a break and Benjamin's x-ray and they put a cast on his wrist regardless.


Benjamin had the option of colors on his cast and chose fluorescent green with an orange stripe.  So Benjamin got to experience life without an opposable thumb on his dominant hand.  Dressing became more complicated. Being summer, it was easier than if he was wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants.  Teeth brushing was hard.  The computer was easy - Benjamin normally uses the mouse right handed.  Fortunately, school didn't start until a week and a half later, because writing was almost impossible. 


Less than two weeks after he got the cast on, on Wednesday (9/15,) he went back to the doctor, and they took the cast off and x-rayed his hand again.  When they took off the cast, Benjamin flexed his wrist for the first time in two weeks and was dismayed to find that it still hurt.  He'd really been looking forward to getting his cast off, and this was a big disappointment.  But the doctor reassured him that his wrist hurting after being immobilized for two weeks meant nothing and they went off the x-ray his wrist.  The x-ray showed nothing - no break, no scar tissue.  Plus, although it hurt to bend his wrist, it did not hurt to press on the bone (which had hurt before.)  So the doctor concluded that the bone wasn't broken and Benjamin didn't need a cast anymore.  The doctor said that it might take up to two weeks for the pain when he flexed his wrist to go away completely, but by the end of the week the pain was gone and Benjamin was ready for his next adventure.


The Oxnard jamboree was Labor Day weekend (9/3-9/5.)  Sue Cohen came with us.  We were concerned about traffic (given that it was Friday of a three-day weekend).  So we left a half hour early and took the back way to Oxnard (118 all the way out, rather than taking the 23 to the 101.  Our fears were not borne out, and it took us less than an hour to get to Oxnard.  We did get a little lost finding the place but not too bad.  The Hollands where there, so Benjamin danced with Carolyn and Jonathan mostly danced with Sue. Although we were eight, mostly we didn't dance in one square.  The dancing was challenging and a lot of fun. 


On Saturday, we were there at 10 a.m. sharp and dancing started shortly thereafter. Debbie Stop showed up with a partner and we danced with her some.  We were having some problems because the dancing was challenging and our squares kept breaking down.  They had great hospitality room with lots of free food.  When the dancing broke for lunch we just went over to the hospitality room and made a meal out of the food there.  After lunch, Jake wanted to go over an Advanced call, so we went over to the Advanced hall, put together a square and got someone to walk us through the call.  When we were done, the Advanced workshop started we stuck around for that.  That was fun, and for the first time in two days I was in a square with people helping me rather than the other way around.  The workshop ended at 2 and we went back to the Plus hall and danced until 4.  Jonathan replaced the missing tip on his bowtie.  Jackie bought a blouse.


The dancing broke for dinner at 4.  The Boots and Slippers had reservations for outback.  So we and the Hollands went there too and got a table nearby. Dinner was nice, very relaxed and unhurried.  After dinner, the plus hall was very crowded.  We were having problems with squares always breaking down.  Finally, partly out of frustration, Jackie requested that we form a square with just the Hollands and the Zevs (and a partner for Jonathan).  We did this, and in the confusion when Jonathan and Benjamin went to retrieve partners, another couple approached our square.  Jackie told him that we were already eight and then got very angry and told us that holding spots was against protocol, which is technically true, we haven't been doing it all night - we just wanted to dance together one tip.  The square dance gods took their revenge by turning that tip into the only progressive square tip of the weekend.  We were seven squares across and five or six deep.  We had never done progressive squares with that many squares.  Jackie was amazed that they were willing to try it with that many squares.  Not all the squares held together but in our square everyone made their way back to their home position.  But wasn't like we danced together all that much!  By the end of the night we were all tired so we took off around 10 shortly after the Hollands left.


Jackie was thinking of blowing off Sunday, the boys wanted to go, so we went.  Boy, was that the right choice!  Sunday was the best day of the weekend.  Jonathan had paired up with a very nice woman and was not scrambling for partners and mostly the eight of us danced together.  The one time, we didn't, Marc and Jackie ended up in a square that could not hold together for more than two calls.  It broke down so often that by common consensus of everyone in the square we just quit.  We moved to the other side of the hall and danced with the Hollands the rest of the morning.  Benjamin and Carolyn had been having problems with poor quality squares too.  Jake and Kathleen resolved this by having Kathleen dance with Benjamin and Carolyn dance with Jake.  We stayed until the very last tip at 1:30 in the afternoon.  We were all starving so we (both Hollands and Zevs) went out to lunch.  We ended up at Red Lobster, which was expensive, but only because Benjamin’s lunch cost as much as Jackie's, Marc’s and Jonathan's combined.  But he ate it all, so we didn't complain.  It was close to 4 when we finished, so we just went straight to Jackie's mom's house for dinner.