Several days ago I thought I’d managed to get a very fine cut on the base of my thumb. Then I thought I had a bit of dead skin hanging from it and went to snip it free so the cut wouldn’t widen. It wasn’t a piece of dead skin. It was a swelling. It stung to the touch and I thought it must be an ingrown hair, or very odd, some kind of zit (I’ve never had either on my hand).
A day later it had doubled in size and a poke accidentally burst it. Along with all the nasty that came out was a small brown needle-like thing that might have been a hair, a stinger, or part of a proboscis broken off when some bug took a nibble out of me. The base of my thumb swelled up red, and over the course of the day a vein of redness spread up the length of my arm.
I’ve seen it all taken care of and all that’s left now is a red, waxy pucker at the original bite-site. As gross as this whole process has been it’s also been somewhat fascinating. What exactly was going on inside my body? What bit me? What was left behind? How did my immune system respond?
Whatever the case, I’m pretty sure whatever but me is dead now. Hope I tasted good, you creepy little jerk.
Does anybody else ever wonder about your brain? What distinguishes us from it? When you get down to it, we are the sum of our memories which create our thoughts, electrical pulses zipping back and forth across this squiggly mass of grey matter. Are we the flesh housing or the energy coursing through it? Both? Neither?