Given the number of injuries that I have catalogued on here, you might be surprised to know that only one of them has ever come close to causing me to faint, and it happened when I was well into my thirties.
My friend Dawn owns an amazing shop selling silk flower arrangements. She has two lovely daughters, Charley and Lily and, at the time of this story, had not long moved into a new house in Surrey.
A year or so before I had employed Charley as my office junior during the school holidays. When Helen and I went to see the new house for the first time, Charley and I, as we were saying goodbye, got talking about the various characters in the office. We were stood by my car and I had my left hand resting on the car. For some reason, the back door was open, which meant that when Charley accidentally leant on it, my left index finger was trapped between the door hinge and the car bodywork.
I may have said a rude word or three. Gripping my finger – which had turned white and was bleeding profusely (and covered in grease) I ran back into the house to run it under the kitchen tap. As I was doing so, I suddenly felt rather sleepy and decided that what I really needed was to go and lie outside on the lawn for a while. Which I did. Apparently the fact that I had also turned ghostly white prevented my hosts from thinking that I was a bit weird.
Fortunately, this feeling soon passed and a sense of foolishness replaced it. I got up, washed my finger, drank the cup of sweet tea that Dawn had kindly prepared, and allowed her to bandage my finger. Fortunately, the big cut where the door had sliced into the flesh healed without any problem, but three months later I noticed that I still had no sensation down that side of my finger. Apparently, what you should do in these circumstances is to go to hospital anyway, in case you have damaged the nerves even though the finger isn’t broken. So let that be a lesson to me.
I mentioned last week that my brother Kevin had had a similar accident. This was it. Only he slammed a car door onto his own hand. Twice. But – before you laugh – he had the good sense to go to hospital, which means he actually came out of it all better than me.