Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Gutted Like a Trout

The last day of a bad year, and it got worse.

I had less than an hour on my shift left, and then I was going home, relaxing, paying my bills for the month and basically enjoying my evening. Naturally, something goes wrong.

My day job is cook at a crappy restaurant. On Monday, I went into the freezer to open a case of hamburger meat. I place my left hand atop the box to steady it, my right hand has a box cutter, which I plan to open the case with. You can probably guess where this is going. Fucking blade slips, slices open my left hand something fierce, and my hand turns into a fucking special effect. Blood everywhere, tissue lay open, and I’m screaming in agony.

I end up at the ER, where I spend the next six hours. I end up with a tetanus booster, a shot of antibiotic in my ass and 20 stitches closing an 8 cm long gash, which runs from the tip of my left thumb all the way to the center of my left palm. I manage to miss the tendon and the radial artery, though, so the wound, while bloody does not seem to be critical. The pain seems to be under control- they prescribed me 20 Hydrocodone, which I’m leery about. There is a bad history of addiction in the men of my family so I’ve always been cautious of even prescribed narcotics and I’ve never touched anything else. I took two last night, and might take one again tonight before going to bed, but I want to avoid the pills as much as possible.

The upshot is I’m off work for a while, and for this month will be more dependant on PDF sales than usual. I also may have to delay some existing projects as my art budget goes into living expenses. Yes, workman’s comp applies, but I still have to pay out of pocket for some things and get reimbursed. And my company’s HR department is…well, fucked is a comprehensive adjective. I’ll get reimbursed, but likely later rather than sooner.  

I will try to get out some other stuff in the meanwhile, less art heavy projects that I can illustrate purely with stock art or with existing illustrations. Before the injury, I’d already sent Mark two PDFs to start off the New Year.

The first is Autorun, a Shadowrun/Cyberpunk style virtual reality hacking minigame for D20 Modern. I did that one basically on a whim. While I’ve been writing the SF Citybook, I’ve been rereading my Shadowrun collection for inspiration, and one night I finally came up with a way to do a fun, fast and intuitive VR hacking minigame.

Second, Solomon Station is out and ready. This big, beautiful 50 page location sourcebook will be out soon. Solomon Station is  a huge, gritty sci-fi environment to explore- a blue collar vision in space similar to the Aliens franchise or old school Traveler games. It’s got a unique feel- claustrophobic, high tech, with racial and sexual tensions simmering under a falsely cheerful, pseudo-Brady Bunch fa├žade. It’s also home to the Wrench, a race of metal skinned humans designed for deep space survival, and the ‘race book’ aspect of the book really ties the Wrench into the Solomon Station setting.

Anyway, you’ll notice I typed this with my injured hand. I can still work, even though typing sorta hurts and is a bit slower than normal. My hand’s bandaged up pretty tightly, so I keep hitting the wrong keys and have to correct myself, so it’s slow and slightly frustration going, but at least I can still work.

Anyway, hopefully the hand heals quickly.

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