Sports

Playing hurt: Andy battles through the pain

Andy Krutsinger
Andy Krutsinger

Alert! Today’s ‘Tuesdays with Andy’ is being written by a wounded man. That’s right, Tuesday Troupe, your fearless leader is not at 100 percent today. Sound the alarms. But if there are any haters out there, don’t celebrate too quick, I’m at my desk and ready to speak the cold hard truth to my favorite readers.

I’m not one to complain when I’ve got an injury (just take this as facts and don’t ask my wife to confirm this), but I feel like I owe it to the Troupe to be completely transparent and let you all know what happened.

First off, I want to take you readers back to the Fall of 2012, a cold, brisk October day in Hannibal, Missouri.

For anyone who doesn’t remember 2012, let me bring you up to snuff: Jay Cutler was still the quarterback of the Chicago Bears, Carly Rae Jepson was taking over the world, a guy named Joseph Kony was public enemy number one, and the United States continued their ownership of a little country called “England” by absolutely dominating the London Olympics.

Wait, stop right there. I see you reaching for your phones and laptops to Google whether or not anyone ever stopped that Kony guy. I’ll just answer that question for you right now. They did not. People gave up when they realized tweeting out hashtags can’t stop African Warlords.

But today isn’t about Joe Kony and his crimes against humanity. It’s about Andy’s rib cage and it’s crimes against the rest of Andy’s body.

By that last line, you can probably piece together that my injury is rib-related, and you’d be correct. You see my friends, on that horrible October day, I broke my ribs when I had an unfortunate fall. Oh, you thought when I said “Fall of 2012,” you thought I meant the season? Plot twist.

I, a young spry college junior, was walking back into my apartment to watch Monday Night Football. I had a PowerPoint presentation the next day, which I planned on finishing after the game was over, so I had my laptop in my backpack. My crumby Acer didn’t even have PowerPoint, so I was also carrying the laptop of my girlfriend (now wife, Mrs. Krutsinger to Mt. Pleasant High School students), because I needed to use hers to do the presentation.

I had gotten a ride from my now-wife and her friends, and when I got to my apartment door, I realized I had made a huge mistake, by leaving a Mountain Dew in the car. I quickly did a Derek Zoolander head-turn (shout out Ben Stiller, also shout out Jerry Stiller R.I.P.) to see if they had started to drive away yet, and say they were just about to.

I took off running and yelling to the car to wait up so I could get my drink. They heard me and stopped, but I was still running probably faster than Usain Bolt (yet another sick 2012 reference by me).

Unluckily for me, I was wearing these cool, slick-looking Iowa Hawkeye slipper shoes which were absolutely 100 percent a fashion choice and in no way plausible shoes. Because I didn’t have correct footing, I slipped tripped on a hill and ended up falling.

If you have good reading comprehension, you’ll remember that my now-wife’s laptop was in my hands. I realized that as I fell toward the concrete parking lot I was approaching, and I had a bit of a Matrix moment. In a moment in time, I thought about how expensive her laptop must be, and so instead of letting go of the computer to break my fall, I hoisted it up over my head so it wouldn’t get damaged.

Amazingly, the laptop only slightly scraped against the cement and remained somewhat unharmed. What didn’t go unharmed? My legs, which ended up scraped all the way down, my ribs, which broke into four pieces, and my face, which hit directly into a parking block.

I scrambled to my feet to make sure everyone knew I had saved the computer and that everything was OK. I knew I was badly hurt, but I still hustled to get to the car so I at least would no longer be thirsty.

When I got back into my apartment, I had a chance to look myself over, as did all my roommates and the group of people who had come over to watch the game. I was bleeding from head to toe, I had a headache, and I was still recovering from a prior annoyance that the game that night was 49ers vs. Cardinals instead of two teams who anyone cared about. (Note, it turns out the 49ers actually went to the Superbowl last year. Just pretend they stunk for the joke, OK?)

Fast forward to a few months later. I was laying on the couch one day and I was thinking about how it had been quite some time since I took that fall and it was weird that my ribs weren’t totally healed yet. They didn’t feel like they were in the right order, and certain movements were still a little painful. At that time I had yet to go to the doctor to see the severities of my injuries.

Anyway blah blah blah, yada yada yada (shoutout Seinfeld, R.I.P. Jerry Stiller), it turns out you can’t just wait around a few months with broken ribs. They healed wrong, they’ll never be in the completely correct order again, and every few months I re-aggrivate the injury if I haven’t been to the chiropractor lately.

How did I re-aggrivate my injury you ask? I did it sleeping. I think maybe I was sleeping a little crooked because I was snuggling with my dog and sometimes my body ends up a little contorted at night. Rough break (no pun intended) but that’s just how it goes.

I’ve also further re-agrivated over the weekend in the following ways: I sat down; I got up from the couch; I leaned over; I turned left. All of those little movements sent a sharp pain through my body, and also it hurts a little if I breathe too hard. Oh, and I frequently get frog splashed by my two-year old daughter. A frog splash is when you run and jump on somebody when they’re laying down, for anyone who didn’t want professional wrestling in the late 1990s.

So long story short, I’m hurt. I’m not 100 percent today. I’m more like 57 percent. Luckily, I give “Tuesdays With Andy” 110 percent already, so I’m somewhere in the high 60s. That’s a D-minus I know, but I’m a warrior, so I’m going to get through it.

I promise no matter how much my ribs and back hurts to put everything I have into this column. I’m going to find a great subject to write about. I’m going to fill the page with tons of logic and emotion, and I’m going to wow the readers with what I am about to say — oh wait. Wait, no. It looks like I’m already over my word count. Sorry, guys.