How I got these scars

You want to know why I have these scars on my knee. They’re so small, how did you even notice them?

They’re surgical scars. I tore some cartilage on my knee when I was young.

There was this shark… No! They’re not bites. They’re from surgery. But my friend Bruce wasn’t so lucky.

We were swimming in the ocean. I heard a yell, a panicky yelp from Bruce’s direction. I looked over in time to see him rise out if the water for a moment, like he was standing up, but we were in over our heads. There was something with him, under the water. A shark!

Without thinking, I swam towards him to help. He was panicking, beating the water. There was already blood in the water.

I reached out to the closest limb I could touch – his right leg – as his body started to rise out if the water again. I kicked towards the shark and made contact. The skin was rough, lots of friction, and as the hard body moved my knee twisted. A sharp pain, but I barely registered it. There was a momentary tug of war, then a jerk, and I was left with a leg… calf, thigh, some hip and buttocks.

I swam back to shore, dimly aware of the senselessness of holding onto this last piece of Bruce. I crawled out onto the beach, exhausted.

I don’t know how long I laid there, but I finally came to my senses as a crowd of onlookers made way for emergency personnel marching down the beach.

I looked down at the body part next to me.  The buttocks stared back.  The man I had known as Bruce, my best friend since childhood, had become just another asshole on the beach. I stood up and limped off toward the parking lot, without looking back.

I got the surgery to fix the cartilage in my knee a couple of months later. It’s still the single most painful event of my life.

Heaven vs Hell


Heaven is where the police are British, the chefs are French, the lovers are Italian, the mechanics are German and the trains are run by the Swiss.

In Hell, the police are German, the chefs are British, the French are the mechanics, the Swiss are the lovers and the trains are run by the Italians.