A Fat Girl’s Guide to Fashion Freedom

Because learning to dress myself was only the beginning.

They were white, with purple and pink roses. No wonder I still remember them. I doubt those hand-me-down sweatpants were ever stylish, but I rocked them. When I was six I wore what I liked. Purple and pink were my favourite colours, so I wore them together, along with every barrette in my arsenal. I even had this splendid set of pearl earrings (clip-ons), which I would wear to church and embarrass my mother. Those were the carefree days, where I didn’t even stop to consider what people thought of my clothes. Would that I could go back.

purple and pink me

Or not.

Bellbottoms, or flares, were coming into fashion as I was entering my teen years. Pants, with flared-out legs so wide that you could park my little car under them, were paired with platform shoes—the clunkier the better. And I had neither.

When my birthday rolled around, I took my birthday money and bought a pair of black flares with white stripes down the side. They were haute. I wouldn’t be caught dead in them today, but I was twelve, and anxious to fit in. I asked my most stylish friend if they suited me, and she assured me they did. Great, I had one pair of fashionable pants.

I was a chunky, acne-riddled teenager. While my friends were wearing low-slung jeans and baby tees that showed off their flat midriffs, I was wearing a hoodie and modest jeans. Stores for kids that age don’t sell size XXL, and even if they had, my allowance didn’t permit much clothes shopping. I wouldn’t have known what clothes to put together anyway. That had to be learned.

I thought I wasn’t popular because I was fat, that I didn’t get attention from boys because I wasn’t beautiful like the other girls.

I did what I could. I bought makeup and experimented with covering my acne scars until I got it right. I tried different clothes, though I refused to shop in the plus sizes because that, somehow, made me ‘fat’.  But somewhere in my late teens I started to pull my wardrobe together. I had this great jacket that made me feel like a million bucks, and some pretty tops that dressed up my jeans. I remember (and laugh) about the first scarf I bought, when they were a new thing. I was afraid that my family would think it was too ‘out there’.

I suspect growing up and gaining confidence did more for my body image than new clothes ever did. I got a job in a meat-packing facility, which is a direct route to looking like crap every day. But I was forced to associate with guys (gasp), stand up for myself, and assert myself among a group of adults that didn’t give a damn about me, or my feelings. It thickened my skin. Knowing that I could hold my own in the real world helped me hold my head high, even when I couldn’t afford to dress like a show-window mannequin.

Shortly thereafter, I began college. My wardrobe consisted of 90% MCC thrift-store items—like a ruffled ‘pirate coat’, a spangled tunic, and a never-ending supply of cardigans. I had classmates who rocked their eclectic thrift-store duds, and from them I learned that clothes were art—meant to be original and expressions of your inner self—not one size fits all. My clothes might not have fit into the prepster, hipster or sophisticate categories, but I was accepted anyway. I was accepted for being me.

I’m still learning that.

These days I work as a ‘fashion associate’ part-time, which comes with discounts that make trendy clothes affordable. I’d say I’ve found out what I would wear if I could wear anything I liked. Right now it’s purple, fish-scale pants, a wine-colored blazer, a sequined black tee, and boots that have caught my fancy (notice the reappearance of purple?). And, I’ve at last found peace in shopping in the plus-sizes. Face it, they fit me better, and they look great.

It will eventually get through to me that my clothes have never won, nor lost me any friends. Rather, it is the content of my character that attracts others. The coworkers who see me in a cerulean uniform and safety glasses like me just as well as the ones who see me in purple pants and sequins.

I can’t go back to being five years old and carefree, but maybe I’ll grow up a little more and care a little less about what people think of me.

Aunt Win’s Last Lesson for Me: a Tribute

She lives in my memory as a tiny lady with bright eyes behind her glasses, and lines around her mouth that said she spent more time smiling than frowning. Her body was slight to gauntness, but spry and active, as was her mind. She never married or had children, but I, along with dozens across Manitoba, am ‘her kid’—through her teaching, her love, and her giving.

Her life was one of courage and adventure from the beginning. In 1913, Aunt Win’s parents struck out from Staffordshire, England, to Canada in hopes of getting a good start to their family. Her dad had heard that the Canadian government wanted to bring settlers into northern Manitoba. They found themselves in the rocky, bush country of Grahamdale, near Lake Winnipeg. They had nothing of their own, except for the things provided by the government—a couple horses and cattle, and a bit of money.

With those small resources, they hewed a farmstead out of the trees, and coaxed wheat out of the stony soil. It took ingenuity to get by. To make a bit of cash, her mother took up baking for the large population of bachelors in the area, and baked bread every day but Sunday.

Aunt Win was born in the sixth year of their life in Canada.

But in 1921, life took a heartbreaking turn. Her father became very sick with Typhoid fever. Though his wife and a friend managed to convince the weekly train to take him to Winnipeg in the unheated baggage car, he succumbed to his illness. Seven months later, their second child, Sam, was born.

In 1924, Win’s mother took her two small children and moved south to Dugald. There she married a man who was renting a farm there. They all worked hard to make ends meet. Young Win fed the hens, gathered eggs and carried firewood. She was very young when she learned how to knit socks and scarves for the family.

She recounted the story to me of the first cake she baked—a white cake in a round pan. She served it at mealtime. When her brother, Will, tasted it he fell off his chair! When everyone rushed to see what was the matter, he pretended it was because the cake was so awful.

She told me about having no winter coat to wear to school until a neighbor lady altered a large coat and gave it to her. Win was very pleased to get to wear this new coat, with its fur collar and side-belt.

In Win’s teen years the family lived at a farm near My hometown. She went to school at the Beatrice school until she began taking correspondence courses in the latter grades. She loved her studies (except for history), and she loved the idea of being a teacher. She even turned the side of an old car radiator into a blackboard, and used it to teach her little sister, Sylvia, numbers, letter and arithmetic.

In her teens, Win was working to support her family. This made her studies difficult. But she was determined to be a teacher. So she saved up her money, got a job as a housekeeper in Winnipeg, and enrolled in a business course. Tenacity paid off. When the business college needed a teacher, she was ready and jumped at the chance.

Win taught at the business college for six years before becoming a teacher under the regular Department of Education. She then began teaching High School in Morris. That first day at Morris school—meeting the teachers and her new students–was a highlight. She was finally where she wanted to be.

Aunt Win loved to help her students learn. At the end of the year, when she saw those who had struggled hard to get their grades succeed, it was worth the time and energy. It pleased her to hand out report cards and think about how much she was able to teach them. She emphasized that “those were great days.”

She really missed her students when she retired in 1984. Win wasn’t ready to retire, but the school told her that she was getting to that age, so she would just have to get used to it. Instead of teaching school, she began teaching Sunday school.

Aunt Win was my Sunday school teacher. I confess I don’t remember much of what she taught, but I do remember how we got to do crafts. We would make things of wood, paper, cloth, bottles, paint, paper mache—pretty much anything. I learned a lot about painting, gluing, and woodwork from her.

I also remember her generosity. She loved to give gifts to ‘her kids’—the many children she got to teach over the years. She would buy ice cream for all the kids at church. If she came over to our place, it was often with a treat. She would give us Easter and Christmas cards (with a five-dollar bill for each of us). She would go out of her way to come to our place to hear us recite our Bible memory verses. She helped me with my writing in my junior high years—reading my essays and giving me editing feedback. If we biked over, she was ready to give us cookies and tell stories.

Aunt Win died this winter. I traveled over skating-rink roads back to my hometown so I could sing at her funeral. The picture at the front of the church was Aunt Win in middle age. It struck me as odd, because all my twenty-two years I had known her as an elderly woman. But the stories that were told were quintessentially her: adventure, fun with her nieces, nephews (like letting them drive her big, old car up and down the driveway until it overheated), great-nieces and great-nephews, generosity, love for people and her God.

Recently I was telling someone about being afraid to not get married—I didn’t want to be alone in my old age. Soon after I found the “Memoirs of Aunt Win”, which I wrote when I was fifteen, and from which the details of this article are taken. Many lessons can be drawn from her life-story, but I will point out one: she was unmarried, but she wasn’t alone. She had a family of brothers and sister, nephews and nieces, and their children who loved her dearly. They told stories about how they loved to visit her because it always meant fun adventures and good cookies, and how she cared about what was happening in their lives.

I see great possibility for myself in this, ‘cause I’d love to be the crazy, fun Aunty! Seriously, though, there will always be a demand for someone who cares, who pours themselves into others. Aunt Win was such a person.

The Cabin: An Icon of my Childhood

We call it The Cabin, and so it is. Just a hip-roofed cottage in a stand of spruce and birch trees, yet it is one of my oldest memories.

It smells like history: some combination of wood varnish, old furniture and bacon grease. It lingers on my bedding after I unpack, and links my city apartment with my happy past. We’ve been going there since before I was born.

It sounds like the rustle of the birch-leaves in the wind that is always blowing, and the creak of the wooden staircase up to the second floor. That creak that made sneaking down to the bathroom (outhouse, longer ago) so hard. They fixed the creak with carpet this year, and it seems wrong. The inane sounds of everyday life are gone—the alarm clock, the ringing phone, the traffic, the siren. The silent demands of the dirty dishes and the laundry—all gone in this peaceful place.

It looks like comfy, mismatched furniture. Everything is old-fashioned but functional—plates, cups, and certain forks and knives that are year after year. Who remembers the butter knives? I do.

It looks like silver water stretching to the blue horizon, broken by white caps at irregular intervals. The wind is strong. We smile, because that means big waves and more fun.

It feels like the rough wood of the handrail, and the pine-board walls, and the carven coffee table. Its the sag in an old mattress. My back protests until it sinks into the softness and forgets that it’s the wrong shape. It feels like sand in the swimsuit and tangled hair after spending happy hours at the beach, collecting shells, jumping in the waves, playing Frisbee.


It tastes like pancakes, and bacon, and Kraft Dinner—not most people’s idea of fine dining, but for us KD was always a treat reserved for the Cabin. We come together around the table—to eat, to laugh, and play cards. We make coffee in the afternoon and visit, because we can. Maybe a little later we’ll bike to the park and play basketball until we’re tired and sweaty. Then we’ll taste sunflower seeds and peach kool-aid from a plastic water jug, passed from hand to hand.

And then there is the sixth sense, the intuition, the essence. What does the cabin mean? The cabin means being together.

My Beautiful History

Whenever you run away
Whenever you lose your faith
It’s just another stroke of
The pen on the page
A lonely ray of hope
Is all that you need to see
A beautiful history

I went through the valley this spring. It began with stress at work caused by underperformance and some relational issues there. Fear multiplied mistakes, and mistakes multiplied relational strain. It got to a point that I would be sick to my stomach at work and depressed at home. Finally I quit the job (or was voluntarily terminated, depending how you look at it). I left with a lot of anger and bitterness in my heart. Some might say it was justified, but I’m not proud of how long it’s taken to forgive.

I floundered for five weeks, searching for work and not finding it, trying to make sense of what happened, trying to find things to do with myself, trying to find casual work to pay the bills. How do you write a compelling resume or sell yourself at an interview when you’ve royally screwed up the last job? It seemed no one wanted me, or that’s what I told myself.

You shouldn’t always listen to what you tell yourself, by the way.

Then things seemed to fall into place. I had a couple interviews. I found a part-time job. I got some temporary work. I was offered a summer job.

Yet it was confusing. Of the two interviews, I was certain both would offer me a job. I negotiated time to wait with the summer job. Of the two jobs, one was for an egg packing company at minimum wage and bad hours. The other was at a pharmaceutical manufacturing plant with good hours and good pay. I really wanted that one, but they wouldn’t give me an answer. I prayed and asked for advice, and decided to turn down the egg job.

Wouldn’t you?

They called and offered. I turned them down. I bawled my eyes out. Here had been a job at my fingertips and I had turned it down? “Am I crazy?” I wailed, pacing around in my apartment. “God, you led me here. Don’t let me down now.”

And then I had my accident, which I chronicled in The Funny Version. And there I was laid up, unable to work. I remember lying on the stretcher in the hospital and going “God, what are you doing? What are you doing?”

Paying my bills was what He was doing.
Within a short time I had money from workers compensation, and the paycheque from the temp job. Suddenly my rent and my credit card bills were paid. I was in pain and I was functionally useless, but I was taken care of. I was also employed. About a week after my accident, while I was visiting with my Grandma, I was called and hired for the job I’d wanted. Start date, about a month after. I also spoke to my boss at the temporary job and he said I could come back to work until the new job started.

I just had to get well, and that took about three weeks.

My friend Amanda and I recently reminisced about when we’d worked together at the job I quit—the one where I’d been sick and depressed. I opened up to her about what had happened to me at that job. Our experiences there were very different, but neither of us work there anymore.

“But if we hadn’t worked there we wouldn’t have met,” she said. And that’s true. I gained a dear friend from that job I messed up.

After Amanda and I parted ways, I gave it some more thought and realized there were a few big perks to losing that job. For instance, I was able to get a part time job at a clothing store. I really enjoy that job, but I also get great discounts on clothes. I love fashion, but after a couple years of college, a low-paying job, and unemployment, my wardrobe was quite depleted. Now it’s… not.

And the other job is much better paying and has benefits—I cringe when I say that because it sounds so middle class and mediocre and apathetic, but when you need a grand in dental work… And this job has plenty of room for me to grow into it.

And, I’ve gained new friends at the places I work.

And I had time to start a blog while I was unemployed, which is my pride and joy.

And I learned about communication, honesty and clarifying expectations.

I am hesitant to get too optimistic, because I was really optimistic about the old job and it turned out to be hell on earth. I grieve for my loss of trust and loss of relationships. But I trust that as I go forward, I will see how these speed bumps and spike strips on the road were pushing me toward something better.

I’ll look back and see my beautiful history.

By the way, I’m not saying all of this to make you feel sorry for me.  I’m trying to tell you that God’s been good to me, and all that I’ve gone through (which is minor compared to what some have experienced) has been used to make me a stronger person, and to increase my faith.  I hope that this account is an encouragement to you.

Bicycles, Bad Weather and a New Pair of Pants

weather wimp

I have a girl-job. By that I mean I work at a clothing store, part time.

By nature, girl jobs require you to look like a girl when you arrive and remain thus throughout. That means makeup, hair, stylish clothes, etcetera.

I also have a bicycle. By that I mean I drive it pretty much everywhere.

By nature, bicycles do not have roofs, and that can be a problem. Most of the time I am prepared—I pack the nice clothes and wear ratty ones so I can change and be presentable for work.

Yesterday was the exception.

It was bright and sunny as I left for work. I left a bit early and stopped off at the library to get a little WiFi. Fifteen minutes later I came out and it was drizzling.  No problem, I thought. I have a coat. So on went my coat, and I went down the road. A little water never hurt anyone.

I turned the corner onto the main drag and was instantly buffeted by gale-force winds. Dang.

Be strong, Geralyn. Be strong.

But then the rain began to pelt down, blasting off my makeup, running into my helmet, soaking my nice, purple jeans.

Dang. “What a fiasco!” I laughed, because there was no use crying. There was no way I could work like this, and there were no dry clothes in my backpack. But fortunately, I work at a clothing store. I quickly devised a plan. I would buy a new pair of pants. What girl doesn’t want a new pair of pants?

I parked my soggy bike at the rack and dripped my way into the mall. It was quiet and there weren’t many people to witness my bad fortune.

“Peyton!” I said as I sloshed through the door. “I have a problem.”

Thus and thus, a dry pair of pants were taken from the sale rack and, ten dollars later, I was dressed for work. Actually, the pants are very comfortable and stylish. So my little natural disaster turned out just dandy.

As I quoted in “The Weather Wimp,” Ken Blanchard said “I go out into the world every day with the attitude that my ‘OKness’ is not for grabs”. Don’t let a little rain steal your ‘okness’. Make the best of it—you may get new clothes out of the deal.

Tell me your best ‘bad weather’ stories–a little singing in the rain, maybe?

No Stupid Questions? Oh Yes There Is.


I’ve been told there’s no such thing as a stupid question. And I suppose that’s true, at least in spirit. What they meant was “If you don’t know, ask. Don’t blunder along in the dark.” And trust me, I’ve done far too much blundering. It takes a certain humility to learn—the humility to admit you don’t know everything. But, there really is such a thing as a stupid question. Lemme ‘splain.

This not a stupid question:

At a previous workplace, a meat shop, I was tidying the store when a well-dressed gentleman walked in.

“Can I help you?” I asked.

“Yes,” he said. “Could you tell me what a heritigeebuseeness is?”

My mouth opened and shut. “Pardon me?”

“A heritigeebuseeness.”

I guessed by the accent that he was new in town. I really didn’t want to embarrass the guy, but I hadn’t the foggiest idea what he was talking about.

Be cool, Geralyn. You’re a professional.

“Um, I’m not sure if I understand,” I began. “Could you explain what you mean?”

“The sign outside the door says heritigeebuseeness. What does that mean?”

I looked up into his eyes, gripped my broom and wracked my brain. The sign. The sign. Oh! The plaque outside the door! “You mean a heritage business? Oh yes, that means that this building is very old, built in 1914 I think. It used to be a bookstore.”

“Ahh.” He nodded and smiled and took his leave.

That is not a stupid question. He didn’t know. How else would he know if he didn’t ask?

But this is a stupid question—one I had to answer twenty times a day. “Is your boss busy?”

Umm… self-evident.

Trumped only by: “Is your boss tied up right now?”

It was the mayor of my small town who asked me this and, being an ass, I replied “No sir, we don’t make a practice of tying him up.”

But I think my favorite dumb question came from a middle-aged fellow who came in one afternoon with his teenage daughter. I did my thing, asking “is there anything I can help you find?” And he said:

“Which of these cheap roasts can you cut into nice steaks?”

I blinked.

To make a nice steak out of a cheap roast takes either a) serious cooking skills or b) magic. Basically, you get what you pay for. I looked at the assortment of rump roasts and cross ribs. “You mean for barbequing?”

“Yeah. The lady at the grocery store cut up a roast for me into nice steaks—a cheap roast.”

Well, good for her. “Do you remember what it was called?”


“Well, nothing I have here really cuts into nice steaks. I suppose we could cut a top-sirloin for you. That’s probably the cheapest option. But I have some nice sirloin steaks right here.” I pulled a couple from the cooler.

He shook his head vigorously. “No! I want you to get me a roast and cut it into steaks.”

“But it would be the same thing.”

“But a roast is cheaper.”

“I can’t do that.”

The guy looked at his teenage daughter. “What a little shit.”

Steam threatened to blow from of my ears. First he tried to con me into selling him good meat for cheap and now he was calling me names!

Be cool, Geralyn. You’re a professional.

I decided to appeal to a higher power. “Let me ask the butcher.” Henry happened to be nearby so I told him what this guy was looking for.

“Hmm…” Henry strode out into the storefront. “Well, we could cut you a top sirloin, but we have these nice sirloin steaks right here.”

The customer crossed his arms. “No, I want a roast cut into steaks.”

“But we’d just charge you the steak price, so why don’t you…”

“They did it for me at the grocery store.”

Henry stood his ground. “Well, I can’t.”

So, out went the man with his daughter trailing behind him. I felt vindicated, and I never saw that guy again.

The way I see it, the question is only as stupid as the attitude behind it. If you genuinely want to learn then there really isn’t a stupid question. However, if you ask a question, you need to be ready to accept the answer. I’ve caught myself doing this before. I belong to a writing group and when we meet, we critique each other’s work. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve listened to a critique and gone “yeah, whatever”. As Jerry Harteis says, “Of all the opinions I like mine best.”

Now that is dumb. I know I can’t please everyone, but if I’m going to discard critiques because I don’t like them, then why am I wasting time with a writing group? Learning requires humility.

Its not as if we should blindly accept the answers we’re given.  We must compare the answer given to the results of the answerer. If they’re a hundred grand in debt and living paycheque to paycheque, I wouldn’t take their financial advice, know what I mean? But if the results they have back up their answer, I’d better give it serious consideration.

So, I suppose, it’s worth displaying a little ignorance now and then. But keep in mind: there really such a thing as a stupid question.

I’d love to hear from you. What’s a stupid question you’ve been asked?

The Weather Wimp

It was insta-freeze, frost-bite, north pole cold outside. Inside, it was about the same temperature as a fridge. The meat shop where I worked had Mexico-grade insulation—that is, practically none.

She was a middle-aged woman in a nice coat, carrying her car keys and buying a ring of farmer sausage. “Did you find everything you needed?” I asked. My fingers danced over the keypad of the till.

She set her purse on the counter and rubbed the crease between her eyes. “It’s miserable outside,” she said. I looked up, dull-eyed. She was only the umpteenth person to say that, and she didn’t have to tell me how cold it was. I’d walked to work that morning.

I sent her out the door and turned around. Amanda, my long-suffering coworker, eyed me.

“I hate when they say that,” I said. “I feel like saying ‘No, you’re miserable outside.”

She cracked a smile. “Yeah, weather doesn’t have feelings.”

I have to admit that on such a bone-chilling morning I don’t want to go outside either. But if weather is all it takes to hijack my good day, well, I won’t have many good days.

Ken Blanchard said “I go out into the world every day with the attitude that my ‘OKness’ is not for grabs”. And I like to repeat the quote “there is no bad weather, only bad clothing”. The point is that we have the power to control our attitude and even, to a great degree, our mood.

This is tough for me because I tend to pick up my moods by osmosis, rather like a thermometer that can only read the temperature of the room. It’s hard to be cheerful when those around me are not. Thus, I often grit my teeth, say ‘I will not be like you’, and just tough out a lousy scenario. Maybe I can find the humor in it.  But if I can’t be cheerful at least I won’t contribute to the misery of others.

My basic idea is that my life-situation, the task of the day, the weather, or my health will not determine my OKness. It is adherence to the overriding principles governing my life (in this case, my faith) that determines my ‘OKness’.

I know. There is such a thing as a bad scenario, just like there is such a thing as bad weather. But in between the extremes, life is made up of events that can go either way. So, is your OKness for grabs?

The Funny Version

I’ve been told tragedy plus time equals humor.  Here’s my attempt.

So the other day I was cleaning grates out on Main Street—the sidewalk, I mean.

There I was, on the sidewalk, minding my own business. It was the last grate. My comrades and I had cleaned grates all day and they were sick of it. I was sick of listening to them be sick of it. My vigorous digging, tilling up the excess sand, leaves and random objects, was interrupted when Marcie said “This guy’s going to pull out. You should…”

Crunch. Scream. Scream. Geralyn falls forward. Foot is being ground, like between two millstones. Scream. Coworkers scream. Geralyn yanks foot free. Shelby is dialing 911. Geralyn is protesting “no, don’t call 911,” and panting, and thinking well, I guess I’m going to miss my shift tonight.

The things you think of.

The driver was standing over me. My coworkers were standing over me. The paramedics showed up almost as fast as the reporter. And what do I think first? Sweet. Hot paramedics.

Said medics strapped me into a goalie-pad, which they called a splint, and hoisted me onto a stretcher. By this time my boss and half my coworkers were standing around being concerned and asking me if they could get me things. Mercifully, my handsome rescuers whisked me into the ambulance.

At the hospital they lifted me out of the ambulance. “Well, that was scary,” I said.

“We haven’t dropped anyone today,” the medics replied as they wheeled me through the door.

Thus and thus, I was left on my stretcher, awaiting a room. Joyce, my supervisor, came and sat with me. A nurse came brandishing disinfectant.

“Where’s the stick for me to bite?” I asked.

“Ohh, precious,” the nurse said.

About that time the health and safety guy and the boss of bosses showed up. They were pleased to find out I was still alive, and began to discuss what new regulations they could put in place.

Meanwhile, paramedics ‘fine one’ and ‘two fine’ were lounging about the emergency room. I looked over at them from my stretcher. “What, do you wait around until something bad happens?” They informed me that I was in their care until I was properly admitted. I figured this would give me enough time to get a phone number. I whispered to Joyce, “The stereotype about medics being good looking is true!” Whereupon she reconnoitered and informed me that one was married, but the other one wasn’t wearing a ring.

The one who wasn’t wearing a ring wheeled his cart of implements toward me.
“You’d better make sure I’m still alive,” I said.

“I suspect you aren’t, but I’ll check anyway,” he replied, bending close to affix the blood pressure cuff, and allowing me to admire him from a better angle.

Finally I was wheeled away. I watched Joyce and Russ recede and called “Good bye. You’ll never see me again. I suspect they’ll take it off at the knee.”

“Maybe a little higher,” said handsome, unattached medic.

They managed to get me into the stretcher bed thingy just fine. It was adjusting the bed that was beyond them. “This thing is older than we are,” they said.

“Just don’t kick the thing that makes the whole thing drop,” I said.

“What does this do?” said the medic, poking around under the bed.

And finally, they bid me adieu and allowed my well-wishers and supportive coworkers and bosses to converge. “Do you need a drink?” asked Marcie.

“A strong one,” I said.

The nurse poked my foot and found out it wasn’t as bad as we thought. A young lady, whose badge said ‘student’ (which strikes fear into the heart of Geralyn) came and poked my foot, and said she suspected it wasn’t that bad. And at last the doctor examined my foot and told me it wasn’t that bad but I shouldn’t go back to work for a week.

And here I am. Honest, folks, I was trying hard to work and be a productive citizen.

As I write, my foot is up. I’ve been hopping around on it, probably too much. It looks pitiful, and it hurts. But hey, it could be a bloody pulp, right? And now that I read the story back to myself, it really is funny. So have a laugh at my expense, and watch out when you’re cleaning grates on Main Street.

I’d like to say that, for all my sarcasm, I appreciated the help and support of my coworkers and my supervisor who stayed with me the entire time, made sure my bike was brought to me and helped me with Worker’s Compensation papers. Thanks also to my sister, the nurses and doctors and the handsome paramedics. You all were great.