Friday, January 26, 2007

The happening

This is the story of what happened at my Anatomy & Physiology lab on Thursday.
We were dissecting fetal pigs.

Those of you who have done this know the smell of formaldahyde... it doesn't really bother me... luckily. The pigs that we were supposed to cut into were still not thawed out, so we ended up just digging around in some that were already cut open and thawed... and had been sitting in a bucket, not refridgerated, for some time. Needless to say these things were ripe. to keep the legs stretched out to the sides you have to hook little rubber bands to their feet and wrap them around the back of the tray, otherwise they naturally want to curl back into the fetal position. Here's a picture of of an open pig so you get the idea of what we are talking about here.

OK so... as my lab partner is hooking his side up to the rubber bands (not shown in the pic)
his hand slips and the leg "flicks". Now I see in slow motion this group yellowish gelatin, the biggest piece about the size of the bottom knuckle of my thumb (the part with the nail), flying directly for my face... ok this stuff is basically a combination of formaldahyde, defrosted pig bodily juice, and maybe fat... some hit my arm as I reached up to block it, some went into my left nostril, and the majority of it, the big glob at least, flew into the back of my throat (dear god why am I a mouth breather!?). I reflexively swallowed...

Now, I probably should have just vomited, I don't know why I didn't. Instead I just calmly took off my gloves and walked out to the water fountain and washed out my mouth and face, blew the goo out of my nose, and put new gloves on and went back to work. I asked the teacher if I should be worried and she said I was probably fine, but looked horrified... it's been a day and I feel ok... I couldn't get the smell out of my nose though and had to break my year long smoke free... uhm... smoke freeness...(hey if the president can make up words, I can too) to take a few drags off a cigarette and that seems to have helped... anyway that is what I am calling "The Happening"