quaker fencer

kathz isn't quite my name. I may be a Quaker. If I'm a fencer I'm a bad one and I don't do sabre. If I'm a Quaker I'm a bad one - but you've worked that out already. Read on. Comment if you like. Don't expect a reply.

Location: United Kingdom

Thursday, July 05, 2007

earlobe protection

In the end, I decided on plasters.

I’ve never tried to fix plasters to my ears before. I had two boxes of plasters: the “family assortment” and the “extreme sports” variety.

My daughter thought “extreme sports” might be what I needed. The picture on the pack showed a man in shorts climbing a sheer rock face in mountain scenery. I think he may have had a plaster on his knee. Perhaps he was being pursued by bears as well. He wouldn’t want to leave a trail of blood in the wilderness.

Fencing didn’t seem quite as extreme as mountaineering and rock-climbing. I wasn’t sure that my ear-lobes were going to suffer extreme pressure. One of my fellow fencers suggested that the real danger lay in putting the mask on and off, though a hit to the mask could also cause problems.

That led me to the “family assortment”. It sounded like those tins of biscuits you get at Christmas. They are supposed to cater for everybody’s taste. There’s usually a general scrum for the ones with chocolate and jam. Then the custard creams and bourbons go. And finally, for a week or so, everyone contemplates the miserable shortcakes, coconut rings and Nice biscuits, hoping someone else will do the decent thing and put them out of their misery.

It will be like that with the plasters. Most are the shape and size you need for a small cut. They'll be used fast enough. The plasters for blisters will go rapidly. We'll move on to the slightly bigger plasters. In the end two big plasters, large enough to cover an entire knee, will remain. I’ll wonder whether to keep them for big emergencies or cut them down to size. I'll dither, buy another family assortment ... and another. Finally I'll have enough unwanted plasters to cover the bathroom walls, should I develop a strange taste in interior decor.

There were no plasters conveniently labelled: “earlobe protection: for fencers with newly pierced ears.”

By the time I’d twisted the plasters over my ears, I looked like an elf from Lord of the Rings whose ears had been put on upside down.

“Why did you do it?” a fellow epeeist asked. “I couldn’t be bothered with the time and trouble.”

Of course, when I explained my piratical ambitions, she fully understood. “But I thought pirates only wore one earring.” This seemed a distinct possibility but set up a further problem. Was the earring worn on the same side as the parrot?

Apart from fussing with earlobes, I did manage some fencing: against a taller man, a shorter woman, and a very skilful left-hander. While I didn’t shine and lacked the clear focus I’d had last week, I still managed a fair number of hits to accompany the very clumsy misses, though tiredness made me slower than usual.

My earrings and earlobes survived.

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Anonymous Jim said...

It took me to paragraph three to figure out what a plaster was.

UK plaster = US band-aid

Cool...I learned something!

10:32 pm  
Blogger kathz said...

I should try to remember that. I thought there was a different term in the U.S. but I couldn't recall it. There are lots of grounds for confusion in the differences between the two languages. (When American men say they wear suspenders the image for Brits is Frank N Furter in the Rocky Horror Show!)

11:53 pm  

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