Wednesday, June 28, 2006

pithy sayings

Everybody knows pithy sayings about pain. Feel free to follow along out-loud. "Pain is weakness leaving the body." "Pain helps build character." I came up with a new one today. "Pain is nature's way of teaching you new variations of cusswords." And here is the corollary to that, "Pain is your body's way of telling you that you might just be a masochist." Okay, maybe not a corollary, but a separate saying.

You might be asking yourself, "Self, WHY did he come up with those two sayings?" Here's why. They have been flitting around in the dank, moldy, corners of my brain since I started working. The reason why is b/c right now, my hands look like hamburger. I have cut myself so many times, my cuts are starting to criss-cross. And I have "talent" to cutting myself too. Take an engine's piston for example. No sharp edges, large, very blunt. Yeah, I cut myself...good. Nah, "cut" is too mild, "filleted" fits better. We were about half-way through a top overhaul on this engine when it happened. Trying to put the cylinders back on the pistons, so that we could bolt them to the block, is always a trial. The rings don't want to squeeze together, tight fit, not a lot of room to work with anyway. Pain in the butt. Anywho, as I was hammering away on the piston pin boss (cap), my hand slipped, and WHAM, straight along the bottom edge of that piston. Nice big cut. By the time we got it together and I finally stopped to dress my wound, there was a good bit of blood on the floor. No, I didn't get stitches. Yes, it has been packed full of grease, dirt, and oil every day since then. Amazingly enough, not infected.

Fast forward a week, to this last Monday. One of my jobs that day was to change the tire on our tug. Pretty easy job, but getting the tire apart was impossible. Our air-impact wrench only gets about 90 lbs of force, I needed about 200. So, I have the nut of the bolts in a large wrench, and one of the other guys has a socket attatched to a HUGE breaker bar on the bold itself. Finally, the nuts start to break loose. And then, my wrench slips off, SMASHING my thumb into the rim. This in turn split my thumb from the cuticle of my thumbnail, straight into that aforementioned cut. No blood, lots of pain, tons of sub-conscious swearing. We try it again, and it slips again. This time it splits my thumb on the opposite side of the nail. Needless to say, I wasn't thinking very "Christian" thoughts then.

Fast forward to today. I am checking the tail cone on a plane, which forces me to get under the plane, crouched under the elevator (small wings that rotate up and down at the back). As I proceeded to get under there, I didn't duck quite enough. Yep, I cut myself on the edge of the metal, through my shirt. Right where I was sunburned from the day before. What is it about a sunburn that makes "anything" hurt more.

This all explains the first saying. Why the second one came to being is because I LOVE this job. Pain and all.


Nairobi Paul said...

Glad you like my blog about life in Kenya.

And your job sounds hard!

Hang in there while you prepare for doing the missionary pilot thing. Sounds like you're right on track.

I love flying in small planes. During our first time in Kenya, I got to make about 3 or 4 small plane trips around Kenya & Tanzania. SO cool to see the amazing geography here from that perspective. This time we haven't gone, as it costs so much to fly anywhere. And when you multiply that times 5 (wife & 3 kids), it's like a trip to Europe for two. Sigh.

LiteratureLover said...

1. I'm glad you love this job.
2. I would have been crying and quitting on the first painful experience. You're either amazingly tough or crazy. :)
3. I hope your hands heal quickly.

Alyssa said...

Okay, so Ben, are you a clutz or just a little accident prone. Take care of yourself...oh, and I know about the sunburn thing. Sunburns and doesn't get much worse.

Alyssa said...

Oh yah, you need to comment on Josh's discussion forum on his web. I'm not smart enough for this stuff. But you and him are both good writers.

thebarefootpoet said...

Dude, you must be my brother from another mother. When I build model airplanes or mechanic with my dad, we know we're making progress when I'm bleeding. And to answer LL's observation: mostly crazy, with just enough tough tossed in to accentuate the insanity.

soulreavers said...

i would have to agree Poet, mostly crazy. Life is no fun if you aren't crazy or insane.

Alyssa, I have posted, but he hasn't done any more topics,

Nairobi, I have always wanted to fly in and around the Kenya part of Africa. Actually, anywhere in Africa. I almost tried to pony up the cash to go to flight school at a place right off the Rift Valley.