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Takes a Lickin'

I want to tell you a story, but I am going to show you the result first.

You can see on my largely shorn and large cranium in the picture toward the back left is an indentation.

That little dark line that's about an inch long.

The story is from a late 70's winter in Northwestern Pennsylvania where I spent my grade school years.

One winter, as the kids in the neighborhood did, I went out to play across the field to play next door in the snow.

It was typically cold and snowy as you would expect. Like feet deep. Not the wimpy precipitation of eastern North Carolina (which is exactly why I live here and not there).

My mother bundled me like that little kid in "A Christmas Story." I had the snowsuit on. Multiple layers of socks. Gloves, a toboggan.
I began to step out into the cold from our back porch where there was an old screen storm door. As I opened the door and stepped out, a GIGANTIC icicle came down and landed smack on my head.

Now I was pulled into the house as I cried the tears of a child who had been almost brained.

My mother rubbed my head, asked if I still felt okay to go outside and sent me on my way (she might have given me childrens' Tylenol, I don't remember).

I trudged through the snowy field between our houses and went into the house of our next door neighbor. My friend's mother helped my take off the top of my snow suit and then my heavy toboggan.

There was blood running down the sides of my head. She quickly discovered the wound at the top of my head that you can now see the scar of.

My mother took me to my pediatrician. It seemed I remember them much better as a doctor then we remember our own kids' physicians largely because it was easier to access and also because I required so much more attention as a kid then my kids ever did.

I recall hearing: "He might have died if you hadn't put on the hat and snow suit."  I was saved by a thick toboggan.

Any way, to this day, I could always feel this reminder etched into my head even through an unshorn head of hair, but especially now that I keep a tight chrome-like look to my noggin.

I also remember an old saying: "Take a lickin' and keeps on tickin'." Old people like me will know which company that refers to.

Always be a little extra safe... you know instead of sorry.

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