Last Sunday was my birthday, and we celebrated with a magnificent sushi dinner, fit for a king. Got home and prepared to relax… “once I run the trash down to the dumpster.” At the time, there was a lot of snow on top of the dumpster. I lifted the heavy steel lid and did my best to “shake” the snow off by quickly raising and lowering the lid.
Wouldn’t you know my hands would slip. The lid would crash down. On my hands.
It hurt so bad that … wow, it hurt bad. I was afraid to take off my glove and look at my left hand, which caught the brunt of the force. But I had to do it. To my amazement, no compound fractures, no broken skin, no blood. But definitely a contusion.
I was terrified that I wouldn’t be able to play guitar for months.
But I’m happy to report that only five days later, I’m a LOT better. I’ve been constantly working that hand to help increase blood circulation to carry away the dead cells. The tip of my pinky is still pretty numb, but I do have some feeling back. Clapton does just fine without using his left pinky when he solos, but I’ve grown really fond of using that finger when I play. (Not that I’m so bold as to compare myself with such greatness.)
Steve Vai recommends that men who love to play guitar should protect their hands more vigilantly than they’d protect their genitals. Time for me to start heeding that wisdom.