Monday 29 April 2019

Breaking down an early stop of a well traveled envelope

Six days ago. 

I had pretty much finished this post six days ago with the expectation of posting it last Tuesday night after I heard back from the next blogger I picked to be in line to continue this...  I'm getting ahead of myself.

I'll jump in again later to let you know where I had left off six days ago, and why, and will turn what was a fairly short post writing wise into a long one.

Here is the start of the original post:

I received an e-mail the other day from Gavin at the Baseball Card Breakdown blog. He asked me if I wanted to participate in the well traveled envelope challenge started by Gregory at the Nine Pockets blog.

I agreed, and Gavin told me that the envelope was in the mail to me at my P.O. Box in Ogdensburg, New York. It took me a while to get down there, but I finally got down there on Monday and drove the package back home to Ottawa, Ontario.

I carefully slit the envelope open along the top where I could see that it had been opened before, and found a nice little package from Gavin.

2012 Topps Chrome - Orange Refractors #23

The mark on the top of the card seems to be something that was on my scanner, but that has now been wiped away.

I know that Night Owl likes pointing out that his Dodger cards look good on blue bordered parallels. I think that Browns cards look good with orange borders.

2014 Bowman Chrome - Topps Shelf Rookies #TSR-JM

 Another Johnny Football card to add to my collection. I already owned the other Browns card, Terrance West, from this checklist.

This card is the 180th Manziel card in my collection, which ranks him sixth among players on the list, sandwiched between Eric Metcalf (5th at 195) and Bernie Kosar (7th at 176). I would not be surprised if Manziel passes Metcalf by the end of 2019.

2015 Topps Museum Collection #99

This Joe Haden card completes my Browns team set for 2015 Museum Collection. Okay, it is a team set of two, but it is complete!

I like the thicker Museum Collection cards. They aren't something that I often see locally.

2016 Panini Certified - Mirror Gold #194 (#/25)

A nice card serial numbered out of 25. Cool!

Higgins had a good rapport with Baker Mayfield last year, and I'm happy that he re-signed with the Browns this off-season.

2016 Panini Certified - Mirror Orange #220 (#/199)

Another orange parallel, but it doesn't have a border that goes all the way around the card. Still nice, though.

I love when the swatch has part of a number, even though it appears to be from an old style jersey as opposed to the new one that he is wearing in the photo on the card.

How many stickers do you think that a player has to sign? It would be nicer if the autograph was more clear. I wonder if it would be better if a player didn't have to sign as many stickers as they do. Or it still could be because the players don't care to make their signatures recognizable.

2016 Panini - Chainmail Armor #247

This is my second of the eleven chainmail parallels for the Browns team set. I'm sure that will be a slow one to finish. It isn't as though I go out of my way searching for them. They'll turn up when they turn up.

2018 Panini Certified - Mirror Silver #16 (#/499)

Finally, a mirror silver parallel of Tyrod Taylor. It is my first card from that parallel set.

The great thing about these seven cards that Gavin sent? I needed all of them. That doesn't seem to happen too often with random mailings. Thanks a lot, Gavin!

As for the next step for the traveling envelope. I reached out to Shane at the Shoebox Legends blog to see if he's interested in participating, and then I'll have to find something to send him. 

This is where I had left my post. Almost ready to go, but I thought that I'd wait to see if Shane replied before I got home Tuesday night before posting it. If he did, I was going to change the last paragraph above to mention that. Well, instead I'll just add to the post now.

Last Tuesday, I started this post, sent an email to Shane, and then left for my curling club for our Annual General Meeting, followed by my team curling in a semi-final game for the B Division of our Club Championships.

The AGM went fine, and I received an email from Shane during the meeting saying that he would be happy to be the next recipient.

After the AGM, I looked and didn't see our bartender in the club. Being employed as one of our club's bartenders, and with the Club Manager on my team, I asked what was up, and what we were going to do.

He told me that the bartender's grandfather had to be taken to the hospital, and that she needed to accompany him, and that none of our other bartenders was able to come in that night.

He decided that since most of our members weren't going to stick around to watch the semi-final games, we could serve whatever drinks we needed to before going on the ice, and then keep an eye on the lounge through the windows to see if anyone needed anything, and then that one of us could quickly leave the ice, serve them, and then come back into the game. We could then work together after the games to serve the teams that were playing. We're all friendly at our club. Nobody should mind a slight delay if it happened.

Our curling games are scheduled to be eight ends. (An end is like an inning, but in curling it means that each team has thrown its eight rocks.) A rough guideline we use in time allocations to schedule the games is fifteen minutes per end. Our game was to start at 8 pm.

We were down 2-1 in the fourth end, and it was shaping up nicely for us when I saw that a member in the lounge was looking to order another beer. Their skip was throwing his first stone, and talking to our skip, I said that I would go serve the drink after his first shot. That would give me time to serve the beer while their skip was throwing his final stone, and be back in time to help sweep our skip's final stone.

After my skip's first stone, we were set up nicely to take a few points in the end. We were sitting three, and they were guarded, and their skip had a tough shot to make to change circumstances.

I quickly went and served a bottle of beer to our member, putting a gripper on my slider foot so that I wouldn't scratch or get the slider dirty.

Now, I'm a little different than most modern curlers. Most now, when sweeping, will wear grippers on both feet and walk down the ice and sweep the rock. That is how they are taught now.

Since I started so long ago, I learned to sweep by sliding beside the rock, and using my other foot, with a gripper, to push myself along. I had tried to change, but just couldn't get the feel of it.

Anyway, when returning to the game, I stepped down to the ice with my non-slider foot, as you should, and then brought down my other foot.

I looked, saw that their skip did not make his tough shot to change circumstances too much, and that we had a chance to draw in for four and take a good lead in the game with our skip's final shot. I called down and said I'd be there in a couple of seconds to help sweep.

I pushed off to give myself momentum to slide, and having forgotten to remove my gripper from my sliding foot, it did what it was intended to gripped the ice.

I'm a big guy. Momentum going forward doesn't just stop. I fell. Hard.

I kind of landed on my left knee and side, giving myself a nice bruise and hurting my left shoulder when I landed.

I say kind of landed to the left because my right leg decided it didn't really want to go that way. It went right, and I sort of did the splits, feeling instant pain.

Falls happen while curling, and the aftermath tends to catch everyone's attention on the ice. Usually a person is fine, and will get teased about their fall. However we all know that injuries can happen, and a lot of people will check on the fallen curler.

The first question was, did you hit your head? No, I didn't. At that point, I figured I would try to stand up. Nope, that wasn't going to happen. I started inwardly cursing myself at my stupidity.

Since we were on an end sheet, and I was right beside the side boards, I rolled myself to the side boards of the rink and pulled myself up the couple of inches to get off the ice surface. (I didn't want to leave an Angus-sized melt in the ice. Body heat will do that. I'm so considerate.) People gathered round, and I told them it was my leg, but that I could move my foot and toes and didn't think that I had broken anything. They called an ambulance and worked with me to make me as comfortable as possible - elevating the leg as much as comfortable, and putting a blanket over me. I knew which members had taken the first aid courses with me that the club offered.

There was rain in Ottawa last Tuesday, and upon calling 911, we were told that an ambulance would be on the way, but that they were really busy, and since I was conscious, and it was just a leg injury, I was a lower priority and it would probably be at least an hour before one came by.

Hearing that, I figured that with help, perhaps I could get into the lounge and out of the cold arena atmosphere.

A couple of big guys helped pick me up, and were able to help me up the stairs and into the lounge. They pulled out one of our nice padded chairs for me to sit on, and I tried to do so. I had immediate pain on my right sitting area as I tried to do so, but I managed to shift over on the chair to sit only on my left butt cheek.

As it turned out, sitting was a bad idea. I could feel that I was going into shock - I started feeling chilly, feeling dizzy and started sweating. Other friends noticed too, and as I asked for the blanket, and said that I think that I needed to lie down, one of my friends was already pulling one of the sofas next to me so that I could be moved onto it. They said I was going very pale.

Getting into a semi-sitting position, with the blanket, and my leg elevated helped a lot. I was brought some water and a glass with a couple of sips of orange juice to drink, and then sat and waited. It helped a lot, and I was told that I was regaining color.

Of course, sitting there also meant I was right there for all of our other members to check in on me as they finished their games. We forfeited ours.

I joked around with everyone until finally the ambulance came about an hour and fifteen minutes after being called.

I've already typed way too much about this, so I won't go into detail for the rest of the night, although there is still quite a bit that I can make a good tale of.

The final result though was that I left the hospital around four in the morning, with an undiagnosed hamstring injury.

Although we have "free health care" in Canada, we sometimes don't have the quickest access to specialists. I was told that I would need a specialist to do an ultrasound on my hamstring to see the severity, but that one didn't work overnights, and that the doctor didn't know when the first available opening to have one would be. The hospital would call me during the day to set that up. They gave me a painkiller pill, and a prescription for more, and a needle with a muscle relaxant. I didn't look at the needle, but my sister said it was big. I felt it.

My sister suggested that I return with her to her apartment for the next few nights since she didn't have the stairs between all the rooms that my townhouse had. It was a good thought, and she took good care of me until I left there Saturday night. I didn't have access to my computer, although my roommate brought by some stuff including my cell charger and my tablet. I just didn't want to work on this post with either of those.

Saturday night was an old friend's birthday. Four of us used to get together regularly to play video games, and that was going to be the plan for his birthday. I told the organizing friend that as long I could have a couch to myself, that I would try to attend.

My sister drove me to my house where we picked up my roommate, and then drove to my curling club to finally collect my car. To "sit" in the car, I had to recline the passenger seat and almost lie on the seat while being driven.

We transferred my belongings from my sister's car to my car, and then my roommate drove me to our friend's house for the party. With a crutch, I could climb the stairs into the house, and then lower myself down onto a sofa for our night of gaming. It was a fun night, and it was a welcome change from the previous few days.

After coming home, I still couldn't really find a way to get my laptop to a position where I was comfortable to use it until today. So finally I can finish this post.

So, not only do I want to apologize for slowing down the whole well traveled envelope challenge in the extra week or so that it took me to retrieve my mail from my P.O. Box an hour away from me, but now I'll be slowing it down some more since I can't drive yet to get everything together and get to the post office to mail it to Shane.

I had some extra stuff already scanned, so I still may get the odd post off in the next little while, but it may be slow. I will be reading other peoples' blogs on my phone.

I'll add an update after my ultrasound on to my next post. I don't think that it is too bad. At first, I thought it might be a bad tear, but now I'm thinking it might just be a small one. We'll see what the doctors say.

In the meantime, I'm trying to find some sense of how to deal with this. There are things that I never thought about if you can't sit without pain. I was trying to avoid as much solid food as I could for the first few days. It isn't fun. (Feel free to laugh when you realize what I'm referring to. It is a funny circumstance to think about, just not to live through.) Wish me luck for a good outcome for the ultrasound.

One good thing about the injury. I think this was the first year since they moved the first round of the NFL Draft to Thursdays that I was free to watch the whole draft if I wanted to. I watched most of it over the three days, and was very happy with the Browns' picks. I'm looking forward to collecting cards of the new Browns.


  1. I've never tried curling... but whenever the Winter Olympics are on, I'll usually watch a few minutes here and there. Anyways... I'm so sorry to hear about the fall. I truly hope it's not too series and that you heal up quickly.

  2. Curling always makes me think of "Corner Gas" and Lacey screaming, "Have a heart!"

    1. Also, I'm sorry for your injury. I hope you heal up soon.

  3. Curling injuries??? Who knew! That is quite the story. I'm glad this happened AFTER the card show. We don't need you going into shock while sifting through nickel boxes.

  4. Ouch! Sorry to hear about the injury.

    But glad you needed all those Browns cards!