OldArchive / Sports

The End Zone Seat

 

You never get too old to listen to your father.

I learned that lesson the hard way last week in the middle of my summer vacation.

We have an old Farmall A tractor, equipped with cultivators. In my mind, this was just what I needed to fix a vexing problem with my yard.

The tractor hadn’t been started in several years and the battery was dead. However, being an old machine, there was another option besides the electric starter.

 Using a front hand crank, like you may have seen in photos of a Model T Ford, we could start it that way.

There is a particular technique to this method. Especially since more than one person has been injured when the crank backlashed on the cranker.

After several tries, we appeared to be close to getting the tractor to fire.

As a result, I got anxious and failed to follow my dad’s advice about the way to crank it.

In a heartbeat, the crank bucked back on me, hitting my right wrist.

I knew just looking at my wrist that it was badly injured.

X-rays showed a complete fracture.

Barring a holdup, as this week’s paper goes to press, I will be having surgery to repair it.

For a right-handed sports writer, this is as close to a disabling injury as you can get.

This column was typed, slowly I might add, with my left hand.

Fortunately, the Rocket crew has expressed a willingness to step up and help as much as they can during the extended convalescence, which may run well into October.

In the coming weeks, we will certainly make adjustments in the normal way the sports section is put together, from news gathering to production, to make life easier for everybody.

I feel bad that I have created any additional burdens with my own foolish accident.

It doesn’t help that it occurred on the eve of the fall sports season, the busiest time of the year.

They say the great ones play in pain, and I intend to get out and get as much done as I can during my recovery.

I am fortunate that I work at a job I truly enjoy and I am a little decent at. I may grumble at times, but as someone once told me, “Quit complaining! You watch sports for a living.”

How can I argue with that?

There will be challenges, especially when I have no clue when I will be able to hold a pencil or pen in my right hand again.

But, like Willis Reed hobbling out of the locker room to lead the Knicks to the 1970 championship, I won’t give up trying to give you the best sports section I can.

 

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