On Wednesday, November 13, during the late afternoon I broke my left arm. It’s always struck me as somewhat interesting that it happened on the grounds of my high school, St. John the Baptist Diocesan High School, in West Islip, New York, because I was in the class of 1977. During the late 1980’s and for most of the 1990’s I was very active in the school’s alumni association. In 1983 my eighth grade history teacher from Our Lady of Perpetual Help Elementary School in Lindenhurst, New York, convinced me to get involved with Amway. At one of St. John’s alumni meetings I convinced one of the school’s long-time assistant principals, Sister Noella, to buy some Amway bubble gum remover from me for the tables and desks in the school. She’d been on the administration for as long as anyone can remember. During the late afternoon of that fateful Wednesday, after I had arrived home from my job at Citicorp Retail Services in Farmingdale, New York, I drove over to the school so I could deliver the bubble gum cleaner to Sister Noella. When I got inside the school I went over to the lobby outside the cafeteria. Instead of patiently walking to the administration’s office, I tried to run. Unfortunately I tripped over a bar that went across the floor, and I fell flat upon my face. My left arm was broken. Within the next few minutes I walked to the administration’s office and explained to Sister William Marie about what had happened. I then walked over to Good Samaritan Hospital, right next d00r. I couldn’t even sign myself into the hospital because I’m left handed and my right hand is entirely incompetent when it comes to writing. They made me scribble something anyway. I was forced to stay in the emergency room for quite an obscenely long time without any attention. Eventually I was treated by Dr. Glen Arvin and his nurse Terry. My mother, and my cousin Larry from Massapequa, arrived to take me home after I was already stupefied from all the anesthesia and other medication I was forced to take. The next morning I explained everything on the phone to Carole, my immediate supervisor at Citicorp. My shoulder and elbow were broken. Because of the gravity of that kind of a break everyone took it for granted that I would inevitably require both an operation and a lot of physical therapy. Throughout the next few months I couldn’t drive and I was subjected to a lot of extra boredom and annoyance. I tried to learn to write with my right hand but that led to nothing but trouble and frustration. With lots of help from other people, though, I got through it all quite well. I never needed physical therapy or an operation. I went to a physician’s assistant a few times for check-ups. When the big day finally came, and my father drove me to the physician’s assistant one last time to have my cast taken off, I practically passed out because of the weird sensation I was subjected to when it was first removed. Other than that, though, most of the immediate aftermath of my broken arm was only relatively minor.