Why hasn’t Mean Gene been posting?

Monday, May 3rd, 2004, 6:58 pm

Because Mean Gene has been in the hospital for four days, that’s why. Oh, don’t worry your little heads, I’m fine. About 2 weeks ago I noticed a sort of bump on the back of my leg. Maybe a pimple, maybe a blister. Gross, at any rate. I cleaned it out and put Neosporin on it and went about my business. But the bump didn’t go away. The bump got gradually worse. Very gradually–it took about nine days for it really get bad. I showed it to my friend Mark, who’s a doc, and he said, “Yuck”. He told me if it got worse to go to the ER. It got worse, so the next day I went to the ER. That was Friday, and the doctors there said, “Wow”. I had a huge swollen area on the back of the thigh, about the size of a dinner plate, and it was violently red and inflamed and leaking a clear, yellowish liquid like the bigtime. As Mark said, yuck.

I figured they’d give me an IV or drain it and I’d be on my way. Uh, no. they admitted me and I’ve been there taking IV antibiotics every since. I just got home with my leg still looking like someone took a bat to it, but it’s much better and no longer oozing like some kind of horror movie special effect.

What was the problem? I had 10 doctors look at it, and the consensus is that I was bitten by some especially nasty spider, maybe a brown recluse. I’d done some yardwork in shorts the previous weekend, and I may have gotten chomped and not known it. And the venom can take some time to work it’s way in and do damage, and then I probably got an infection on top of it. Fun.

So I had about four days of lying on my back, watching lots of sports on TV, and eating some surprisingly palatable hospital food (when you’re in the hospital everything looks good, and every meal is reason to celebrate). I also got the chance to read Cloutier & McEvoy’s Hold’Em book and Gary Carson’s book, so hopefully it will end up as a profitable stay as well. I’ll be back in the saddle soon, and hopefully get my NYC post done tomorrow.

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