I used to joke, “I have the greatest job in the world, but it does have a dark side.” Then I would explain, “I’ve also been bitten, scratched and pooped on by one of every creature at your local zoo.” I was only half kidding, because there is a price the body pays for having too much fun.
While recovering from my third knee surgery I was thinking about some of the fun I’ve had in doing a job my wife describes as, “summer camp for adults.” This year I celebrate twenty years of working at National Geographic, or twenty years of getting paid to go to summer camp as Betty calls it. It has been filled with multiple adventures of a lifetime, and how many of those should one person be allowed to have in one lifetime? Clearly I’ve enjoyed more than my share.
I was also reflecting on some of the costs of that fun. In addition to the three knee surgeries, I’ve had rotator cuff surgery on both shoulders, a foot surgery, a dislocated elbow, fractured pelvis, scapula, great toe, and fractured ribs twice, a lower back injury, a few stiches on occasion, numerous bites, scrapes, and cuts, as well as a variety of infections.
No wonder my orthopedist, David Johnson, calls me his annuity. He really is a good doctor and he’s worked miracles with this beat up old body. He also has a good sense of humor and reviews some of my MRI’s and surgery films for a little musical history of a few of my adventures in the field that have led to adventures in hospitals and recovery rooms.
The music is a blues song, appropriately titled, “Hurts Me Too.” I previously posted a video I shot showing my friends Bill Maxwell, Hadley Hockensmith, Phil Driscoll, Michiko Hill, and Pee Wee Hill recording this song, but now I’ve added video showing highlights of several of the adventures which ended up hurting me too.