Many people make the mistake of thinking that I chose my current career because I enjoy being creative. The truth, however, is that when I was young and facing all the wondrous possibilities of adulthood, I decided I wanted a life as sedentary as possible. The profession of graphic/web design just happened to fit the bill, where the only occupational hazard comes from ingesting the brain matter of others, when you show the computer illiterate the inner workings of a website, and their heads explode.

This was why I was a little hesitant a couple days ago, when the company confronted an increase in work without more workers, and I was asked to help in the warehouse. Part of me was flattered in that I was entrusted with more responsibilities, but the other part was frozen in fear, knowing I was about to enter a highly dangerous area to do work that involved the movement of muscles. I called my girlfriend and told her I loved her.

I stepped into the warehouse carefully, tiptoeing around the forklift before I got to a work station set up for me. Stacks of cardboard boxes awaited, and I was told all I had to do was move them. I let out a sigh of relief. The boxes were small, and it all seemed relatively harmless. I even got through a couple boxes before it happened.

One of the boxes was open, and I had to tape it shut. But as I reached across it and pulled the tape back towards me, a particularly stubborn piece of cardboard snagged my thumb, and sliced into my skin, leaving a cut at least 1/8th of an inch long.

Tears poured out of my eyes as I collapsed unto my knees. With my arms outstretched, I screamed towards the sky, while the camera above me pulled away in a slow, dramatic fashion. It started to rain, and I let it drench me. O, I am fortune’s fool!

“You got a papercut?” my colleague said.

A papercut? A papercut? Did he not see this violation of my flesh, from which my crimson life fluid threatens to spurt? He quickly continued with his work, and I had never felt so alone.

Even now, when I can’t even remember whether it was my left thumb or right thumb because it had long healed, I suffer the scars. Not physical scars, of course, because it healed pretty well, but emotional ones.

And as I stare at the moon, pondering the meaning of my life, and why bad things happen to good people, and when the television show that everybody says I should watch is going to start, the question lingers.

Will I ever to be able to dance again?


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