By The Old Yarnspinner
It was mid-afternoon on a weekday at the Anderson Memorial Hospital Emergency Room. It had to be right after 3:30, because that’s when the shifts changed. We had clocked in, and were supposed to head straight to our jobs, but I was deeply in love with a hot for a little blonde x-ray tech student, and always went through the ER just in case she would be there.
Luck wasn’t with me that day, but a few months later I talked her into becoming Mrs. Diane Fant, but that day she wasn’t to be found Anyway, as I headed on down the hall I saw four, maybe five construction company trucks turning into the parking lot with tires squealing. Workers were piling out of those trucks like a swarm of mad hornets, congregating around the back of the first truck.
Then two workers were doing their best to bring in a fellow worker, obviously in pain, screaming and yelling, while a third worker as trying to hold an 8-foot 2×4 board steady against the hurt worker’s foot.
As they got closer, the reason he was yelling and screaming was evident. Sticking up through the middle of his foot as a spike. No, not a nail. This thing was a spike. It looked like something that would go just fine on the end of a spear.
As they brought him in, two other workers were trying to explain how this guy had accidentally stepped on the spike and was immediately in horrible pain. They tried to get him to be still long enough for them to cut the ends off the board, so he could be transported easier but he wasn’t having any of that.
The ER doctor, and every nurse within hearing was immediately going full speed to see what could be done. Two other doctors, just walking down the hall, were so attracted to the noise they stuck their heads in, and immediately saw their help was needed.
In short order, there were five or six construction workers, a couple of nurses, and a doctor trying to hold the victim down while the ER doctor was hard-pressed to use a pair of outsized scissors trying to cut the boot off the man’s foot so they could go to work on the wound.
Every time he made a cut, the victim would scream that much louder.
Then the boot and the board hit the floor. Everyone, including the victim, was looking to see how bad he had been injured.
There was no blood. There was no wound.
The spike that appeared to be sticking through his foot had instead gone between two toes. It made just enough of scratch to leave a little red line on the side of each toe.
By then one of the company’s owners had arrived to make sure everything possible was being done for his worker.
He looked at the foot. He looked at the worker, said two words, and walked out the door.
“You fired,’ was his parting shot.
One of the other workers did offer to give him a ride back to the shop, so he grabbed the boot that had been cut to pieces but still firmly attached to the board, and walked out.
He wasn’t even limping.