In my lifetime, I’ve fainted 4 times.
The first was my freshman year of college, when, as I was getting ready for an early morning class, I accidentally bumped my elbow against my closet door. Actually, “bump” probably isn’t the right word — I hit my funny bone pretty damn hard, and a strange, tingling sensation overtook my entire body. I got really sweaty, really dizzy, and keeled over. Next thing I knew, my roommate (bless her heart) was shaking me awake, worried I had died.
The second and third times were related to dehydration during my second year of college, when I’d come down with mono and had been so sick for a few days that I hadn’t had too much to eat or drink (not smart). I was with Joe one afternoon at a dining spot on campus, unable to eat a bowl of soup, lying all over the table with my head in my hands, burning hot with fever. Nauseated, I got up to head to the restroom, then keeled over in the middle of the cafeteria. A cashier saw me and ran over to me, then called an ambulance. Joe had no idea what was going on, since he hadn’t seen me fall. It wasn’t until he saw the huge commotion that he realized the girl laying on the ground was wearing the same outfit as his own girlfriend had been wearing that day.
The paramedics came and took me away on a stretcher, which was actually very embarrassing seeing as how we encountered several people I knew as they carried me out. I proceeded to faint again, later that evening, after a long nap and still not a drop of water in my system in the last day or so. Eventually, I figured it out and started drinking some Gatorade, and was much better. You’ll be happy to know that I’m one of those lucky bastards who recovered from mono in like a week and a half.
But it only takes one fainting spell to know that it isn’t that fun, and I certainly don’t relish waking up on the ground, having absolutely no recollection of what the hell just happened.
That being said, the fourth time I fainted was this last weekend, and in true VMAC fashion, it was fairly inconvenient, embarrassing and spectacular.
I was doing some much needed grocery shopping at Whole Foods on Saturday, and as I waited in the checkout line, a bottle of wine I’d laid in the child seat of the grocery basket came crashing out of the leg holes and right onto my foot. The second toe on my left food started bleeding, and the pain of having that single poor little toe break the fall of the bottle (I’m guessing?) momentarily overwhelmed my nervous system. I got very, very dizzy, and I full-on fainted. At the checkout line in Whole Foods. And I hit my head (in two places) on the side of the checkout counter as I went down. Joe reports that I was out a good 20 to 30 seconds. This kind of thing only happens in movies.
Of course, when I told my mom afterward, she said, “Well, was it at least a GOOD bottle of wine?” No, mama. No, it wasn’t. In fact, it was a really, really cheap bottle of Sauvignon Blanc that I was buying just to have some cooking wine around the house. Rendered unconscious by a cheap white. What is the world trying to tell me, exactly?
Two days later, and my toe is doing a lot better. I’m not sure if it’s broken or just sprained, but it’s still pretty purple and swollen, though I’m getting much better at gimping around the house on it. Ironically, my head hurts a lot more from hitting it against the counter than my toe does from that damn bottle.
Let this be a lesson to you, fair reader, that if you’re going to stash bottles of booze in the childseat of your grocery shopping basket, make sure the plastic flap featuring instructions on how not to injure your child is flipped upwards. Otherwise, all bets are off.