I have this thing: when I learn a new word and like the sound of it, it becomes a “phase” for me to continually say it as often as I can. However, there are a few words that just stick with me for the rest of my life.
So, I promised to tell you the story of the toothpick and the toe in this blog.
One day, when I was a freshman and 14 years old, I was chasing my brother around the house. At the time, he was only 7, but we loved to chase and tickle and wrestle and sword/lightsabor fight each other. Around and around we went, from the kitchen to the dining room to the living room to the hallway back into the kitchen. I was catching up to him. Then, suddenly in the kitchen, I felt a prick on my toe–a sharp prick. I let out a short, “Ow!” I hobbled over to the stairs to sit, expecting to see a safety pin or a tack stuck in my sock (if it had stuck on).
Boy was I in for a surprise.
Staring straight back at me, through my fuzzy, green frog-eyed socks, was a toothpick. Ok. A toothpick was stuck through both the top and the bottom of my sock. It must have grazed my toes and was caught between them. I began to pull it out–but it wouldn’t budge. AND I felt a rough tugging.
The toothpick was IN my toe.
Mom rushed in, Dad behind her. I explained the situation to them, mom worried, dad hiding his expression.
“How did you get a toothpick stuck in your toe?”
“I don’t know dad, but it hurts, get it out!”
He sat down on the stairs beside me and tried to pull it out–that hurt. By this time, I was freaking out. I had read stories of people having nails and the such speared through their foot, with the pain, and the bleeding, and the infection, and the ER. I wondered if my toe was severely bleeding under my fuzzy green sock. I wondered if I had to go to the ER. I started to get light-headed and started crying.
“How did you get a toothpick through your toe?” my dad asked again. This time laughing. “I understand about a nail, but a toothpick?!? I mean, was it just standing straight up?” He laughed.
“It’s not funny!”
Dad couldn’t pull the toothpick out with the sock on, but since it was through my sock, he had to cut my favorite pair of socks off. And there it was. My second toe on my right foot with a toothpick through it completely.
“It doesn’t look to have penetrated bone,” Dad said, as if that made it any better.
Dad held onto my foot with one hand, and took the toothpick in his other hand. With a quick yank, it was out. No blood, no swelling, a tiny hole were it just was.
I was a little sore for the next few days, but just fine. There is no scar from it. But, it scarred me nonetheless. For months afterward, I watched the kitchen floor as I walked. Whenever we used toothpicks, I personally made sure all of them were escorted to the trash can.
But, to this day, I trump all.
Some have pierced their skin with a safety pin, pinning it on a layer of dead skin.
Some have stapled their belly, or their fingers.
Some may have even been stabbed by a small nail.
But, I have had a toothpick go all the way through my toe.
“A toothpick! How did you get a toothpick through your toe?????”
1) Last book you read?
2) Favorite song right now?
3) Favorite place to shop?
4) Best purchase ever?
6) First kiss story. May NOT be the same as #5.
8) What is your next vacation? What are your plans?
9) Favorite blog that you follow?
10) Celebrity you’d most like to punch in the face?
11) Something you LOVE that you’re embarrassed about?
When I was in high school, I hated my real name. I didn’t feel it was creative, so I went on a search for one. Thus, Tanney was born. I used it throughout my classes, published in the Literary and Art magazine, as well as the school newspaper with it. In my Creative Writing 1 class, we read an excerpt from House of Mango Street. (read it–its really cool) Then, we were told to write our own about our name. If you are interested in seeing my 14 year-old self’s response, go to my Fictionpress page.
Here is my new one, in 10 minutes, just a Slice of my Life…and yes, you may be able to see my real name! Lucky you!
Tanney. Smiles–that what it is. Smiles, and an aura of orange. Playful, passionate, creative, unique, a-follower-of-her-own-drum-beat.
Tayler. Smart, academic, tom-boy. Determined teacher. Finally found her self-confidence.
I have a duel personality. In high school, in my classes, I went by Tanney. On my sport teams, I went by Tayler. My fellow writers knew me as Tanney. My fellow church members knew me as Tayler.
Tayler (Old English)–tailor. Bethany (Hebrew)–house of God. Christiansen (Danish)–son of Christian. Go even further–Christian–> one who believes in Christ. My name holds new meaning to me now. I am a Christian, my body is a temple, the Holy Spirit lives within me.
Tanney (no origin)–me! There is no nickname for Tayler. Tay-Tay gives the connotation of a toddler just beginning to walk, stumbling around in a pink tutu. What would I call myself in a world of Katie’s, Kathy’s, Kat, Jess’s, Jessi’s, Brit’s, Maddie’s?
Tayler + Bethany = Tanney. It took a while, but the equation worked.
Lo, and behold, I loved tangerines. Oranges, tangerine, clementines, mandarins, citrus fruit drinks, citrus starbursts, citrus suckers, citrus candles. I loved it. Tanney–short for tangerine.
Youthful. Tanney encompasses my youth, allowing me to be forever young, while Tayler allows me to grow up and experience new places. Tanney holds my imagination, Tayler holds my ambition.
Together, I am a formidable foe, a determined dame.