Monday, April 30, 2012

The Nose Break

Halloween has never been a great holiday for me.  Sure, as a kid, I loved dressing up as the blue ranger and demanding candy from my neighbors in exchange for poorly written jokes about skeletons needing baths, but it lost its luster when I was a 15 year old and it was too early for power rangers to be cool again.  They totally are now.  And if they aren’t, nobody tell me because it takes me WAY too long to think of Halloween costumes.

Halloween got cool again sometime in college, but somewhere between the firewomen with extinguishers filled with cheap tequila and the colorful and exotic lines for throwing up in the bathrooms, it lost its luster.  Sorry Halloween.

One fateful Halloween, I dressed as Waldo from the Where’s Waldo books.  At the time of costume crafting, I thought I had such an original and quirky idea.  I found out later that it was a very common costume idea, and I was dumb and conventional.

I had been invited to a few parties and it was my goal to show up at most of them.  I went to the furthest house first, which was a Barker party (quick description of Barker here.)  There were about 15 people there, but because it was a one story kind of party house, it was pretty crowded.

Two of my friends had dressed up as the 2 guys from Dumb & Dumber.  You know that scene where they find a ton of money and buy bright orange and blue suits?  That was it.

Other people were dressed up too, and made the obligatory annoying jokes that they had found me, Waldo.  Hint:  No one should be Waldo for Halloween.  Be a dinosaur.  Be anything that would look hilarious and classy as a drunk version of that.  I had a dream that I went as Ronald McDonald and kept saying really hilariously racist things.  Do that.

Anyway, my friend Sara and I had one goal in mind at this party:  it was time for drinks.  Sara and I wolfed down a few Hawkeye vodka shots and then switched to something lighter.

Well, I switched to something lighter anyway.

Then the party started to get really crowded.  I felt like being a little silly and stole my friend’s Dumb & Dumber cane (the bright blue one, because orange is hideous).  I started pimp walking around the party and generally being obnoxious to everyone.  It’s not everyday that Waldo gets to pimp around and chug vodka.

Eventually, Sara had enough booze in her to bring out her inner-african-american and wanted the cane for herself.  As I walked by, she grabbed the bottom of the cane and held on for dear life.  Sara and I struggled for the cane, and it soon turned into two drunken goliaths in an all out tug of war for the pimp-cane.

I'm sure we were the coolest people there
With a feat of retardedly drunken strength, I wrenched the cane out of Sara’s hands.  For one shining moment, I was free to Waldo pimp again.

But the pull was stronger than I anticipated, and my arm went swinging out of control

And landed into my good friend Amanda’s nose.

Anybody who has ever unintentionally harmed a friend knows the terrible guilt and pain that I felt at this moment.  If you haven’t hurt anyone ever, congratulations Ghandi, go eat a plate of spaghetti, you look gross.

Amanda, of course, burst into tears.  I just swung a cane into her face.  She ran with her boyfriend into the bathroom to stop the bleeding.  I floundered about, trying to be helpful and uttering horrified apologies.

I was a pre-med major at the time, so I knew basic first aid.  But I also was so traumatized that I should have been very far away from the rest of the party.  I felt the weight of the world and the eyes of the party on me, and I knew it was all my fault.  So, after getting some ice and stopping the bleeding, I did my best to pre-med everything away

I ignored the obvious signs:  the blackening eyes, the steady flow of blood from her nose, and the turmoil of her tears, and I said pretty thickly, “Your nose doesn’t seem broken.  In fact, I’m pretty sure it’s not.  But to be safe, go see a doctor on Monday.” 

Of course, I was just hoping and willing for the lies to be true.  They weren’t.  Amanda had suffered a broken nose at my hands and I am a nose killer.

The rest of the memories from this night get a little hazy.  I’m pretty sure I started self-medicating my guilt with Hawkeye vodka, but I’m about as equally sure that everyone at that party stared daggers at me until I left.

Since the incident, Amanda has talked to me about it.  She said she got some surgery to fix her broken nose.  She put a really positive, optimistic spin on it by telling people that “because insurance paid for it, I got a free nosejob!”  That’s why I love Amanda.  She told me that when she tells people the full story, they gasp and ask why she didn’t sue me.  She says she tells them ‘I’m not going to sue my friend!  It was an accident.”  That’s why I REALLY love Amanda. 

Please don’t sue me.