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Banbury Cross

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Post details: Soccer heals heels

Soccer heals heels

Some time ago I hurt my heel. It wasn't an unbearable pain, but it was pestering enough to suspend my tennis and soccer activities for a while. The dull tingle was constantly lurking in the background, like a crouching puma - ready to pounce should I make a wrong step.

Finally, the ache subsided and I could return to the soccer field, where our little Czech team played a pick up game against a group of guys from Latin America. I didn't even have to look at their passports - they were hollering at each other like a bunch of macho cowboys from some melodramatic Argentinian telenovela. Diego! Fernando! Manuel!

One of them was a little mercurial forward whom his teammates called "Little Mexico", although a friend of mine dubbed him "El Meat Grinder" for his pitbull ferocity and undying verve. He used his legs to argue, and he argued like Cicero. Little did I know that I was soon to receive my own personalized autograph from this accomplished orator.

In the middle of the match, "Little Mexico" decided to check the quality of the Czech anklery and stepped on my foot. Scratch that. He jumped on it. He assaulted it as if my ankle personally stole his girlfriend. My foot took a little bit of offence at that and puffed up like a huffish teenager. I could barely take my cleats off after the match. But as I hobbled to McKeever's for our after-game drink, I realized that my previously vexing heel pain was completely gone. Erased. Or more precisely - overridden.

Apparently, my body is not able to process more than one source of pain at the same time. This makes sense. I am a guy and guys are notorious for not being able to multitask. How could we expect more from our pain-processing facility. While we were downing Pilsen beer, it occurred to me that there is a general principle at play here: we could drive one infirmity away with another. Maybe I could have this idea patented and start my own medical practice!

"Oh Jeff, you have a liver problem? Let me kick your shin and give you a nice bluish bruise? There! How is your liver doing now?"

"You sprained your ankle, Mr. Jones? Worry not. Just go home, have some cup cakes, make sure you flush them down with plenty of beer, maybe a few apricots creamed with mustard, a glass of warm milk and top it off with one or two pickles and I am telling you - your body will be so busy handling your upset stomach that you won't even notice you have any ankles, much less sprained ones."


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