At least the eggs were ok

I hurt myself again. This time, I was coming home after the gym, carrying my laptop, gym bag, and groceries. The apartment block I live in is on a hill, so I was walking down the hill, rolled my right ankle a little bit, and fell onto my left knee. So it was a weighted fall, downhill, onto some rough pavement. Jagged is more like it. At first I didn’t realise how bad the injury was. It hurt some, but it was dark, and I was more worried that I had re-sprained my ankle (I hadn’t). Then I was worried about my eggs (one cracked, but didn’t completely break), and my almonds which had managed to spill all over everywhere.

By the time I got inside I saw that it was bleeding quite badly but figured that was good because it would clean the wound out. When I finally washed the wound and put on disinfectant I saw the extent of the damage. Sorry for the graphic photo. Some punk in Joburg made me take it. Actually, it is kind of amusing: it looked for all the world like something fake, from a movie or a Halloween costume! But, sadly, this was real life. I was planning on just bandaging it and getting to bed but there were enough facebook comments that I might want to get stitches, combined with a Google search indicating that I needed a tetanus booster, that I took myself to the ER at the local MediClinic.

The good news is that there was no wait, and the doctor prescribed a very different course of treatment to the one I would have selected (which was bacitracin on a non-stick bangage, but essentially keeping the wound moist). Apparently dry is the way to go. So I saved myself a couple of days of healing. Unfortunately, there were chunks missing so large that I couldn’t get stitches (!). The best statement out of the doctor’s mouth: “It’s not as bad as you think it is.” The worst: “You left some pieces of yourself on the sidewalk there.” The most ego-boosting: “And a pretty serious one [athlete], from the looks of it.” (I was asking how soon I could get back to my sport). There were also some comments about my pain threshold, but in reality because the damage was through to beneath the nerves, the pain is actually minimal. Hand rips are way worse. But while I was there, I had her check my ankle to see if there was any permanent damage from the sprain. There is, but it’s quite minor.

The wound care specialist I saw Friday morning also pointed out that I was very lucky that it wasn’t worse because it wasn’t on the patella (knee cap) itself, firstly, and secondly, that there isn’t a whole heck of a lot of skin where I fell, but my wound does not go straight through to the bone. So it may look like a horror movie, but it’s actually just a flesh wound. I should be back to normal in three weeks. Which means about 2-2 ½ weeks. In the meantime I am restricted to the same sort of things I was restricted to when I had my knee tendonitis. As a result I missed doing Fight Gone Bad Friday afternoon which SUCKED.

Ironic, firstly because I was just telling Jobst how I was the healthiest I’d been in a long while, and secondly because I was feeling super sorry for myself from Tuesday evening (frustration, impatience, confusion, and annoyance … all my issues) all the way through until this happened. Then I felt a bit more sorry for myself, and quickly realised there is no point crying over spilt milk, and sucked it up.

We definitely made some really good strides this week: got a couple market research projects kickstarted (one for educational content in schools, and one general look into staff community projects). I actually LOVE designing market research studies, and walking people through it. Yes, indeed, there are some aspects of managing that I’m really enjoying!

I also thought about what should go into a revised monthly status report, worked with two of our interns on drafting a fact sheet template, had key catch-up meetings with FoodTents, Wines with Heart, and found out what’s going on in the Greenpop world and some immediate next steps there. Trying to find the balance between managing the interns & their deliverables, figuring out the best way to help the people in the acceleration programme, and building our own systems. Need to step back and do some serious planning and goal-setting.

Oh and we got our hardware delivery from HP. A huge number of laptops, desktops, and flat screens all arrived this week: addressed to me, actually! This is going to make a huge difference to productivity.

I had quite an interesting experience Tuesday lunch, which was at The Loading Bay. Everyone there was beautiful: men, women, old, young … even the wait staff. Even the food was beautiful! This being Cape Town, I happened to run into two friends who were meeting each other, and I had a quite interesting meeting with Eran from Springleap, in advance of his trip to the U.S.

Thursday evening was also great: the first get-together of a group of really interesting and smart women, at Les’ lovely house in Higgovale. We talked about crowdsourcing (of all different flavours), drank some wine, ate butternut soup, and discussed pregnancy, childbirth, and raising children. Two very different conversations at different parts of the evening! Very cool though. On this subject, to me, crowdsourcing is best when the crowd actually either works together to solve a problem (a la Linux and Wikipedia), or when the wisdom of crowds is applied.  

So busy, busy, but very productive week. Not a bad one at the gym, all things considered. I still can’t string consecutive double-unders together but on Monday I managed to do 20 unbroken in the workout in the first round, and I wasn’t too dissatisfied with my weighted ring dip (12.5kg). My Tuesday workout on the other hand was a bit of a disaster: my mind was definitely not on my lifting, so I completely forgot how to clean, got quite frustrated, and that’s really all I want to say about that.

Wednesday, prior to my fall, we did 1 rep max bench press. I got to 60kgs and it felt easy enough that I tried for 65 and failed, which strained me enough that I failed also at 62kgs which I almost certainly could have gotten had I not tried for 65. But now I at least have a good sense of where my max is. I’m approaching that bodyweight bench press! Then we did death by pullups & kettlebell swings. The “death by” workout format is where in the first minute you do 1, second minute 2, until you can’t do the right number of reps. What happens is that in the first few minutes you stand around a lot, and laugh nervously about how easy it is and how hard you know it’s going to be. And, inevitably, there comes a time in every “death by” workout where it stops being funny and starts being hard. In this case, it was minute 8. I made it through minute 10 and failed on the pullups on minute 11 (grip issues … what else?).

In an attempt to fix my muscle-up, I was watching videos of people doing them and I realised a couple fundamental flaws in what I was trying to do. So, the good news is that practicing Wednesday and Friday night I think I have fixed my “pull” so I am now getting my hips higher and am pulling lower onto the chest (and my hanging in the false grip is much improved). I even started videotaping myself to analyse what I’m doing. Next up is to practice the transition, which I think I know how to do, and I’ll have broken the back of it, as Peter is so fond of saying. I think it helped me to figure out exactly what I was doing wrong, because it’s hard to fix something when you don’t know what’s broken. Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is stupid (insane), right? The same as not practicing what you can’t do is no way to get better. It is rewarding to get better at the things you practice!

 Now it’s time for the Springboks vs Fiji!

 • “It’s so confusing!” “That’s Cape Town!” – Ellie & Nonhlanhla
 • “Sales.” “Exactly.” – Eran & Ellie
 • “I’ve got this idea of what I want. I know what I want.” – Shaun
 • “Maybe things being delayed is good for you.” – Shaun
 • “The only thing it’s good for is your pain threshold.” – Ralf
 • “And also you know what’s going to happen. You just hope it’s not going to be that bad.” – Ralf
 • “It’s not as bad as you think it is.” – ER doctor
 • “You sound almost anti-American!” – Sunel
 • “You are so pedagogically useful.” – Lilian
 • “Onto what? A knife?” – Adrian

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