A Tale of Two Toes
Warning! This post may not be appropriate for young children or the faint of heart. While not sexually oriented, unless you like toes, the pictures I have included describe what happens when you regularly wear cowboy boots and pound your toes into the end of hiking boots backpacking hundreds of miles on the High Plateau.
Sheep dogs are fortunate in that we aren't vain like people. Since we don't wear shoes, we don't spend time trying to match our foot wear with our current outfit or activity. If you haven't noticed, my outfit is pretty much the same all the time except, maybe, after I have been groomed. Even an old man like Dangerous suffers from the vanity found among many young women as he tries to find the perfect footwear to match his not so stylish western outfits. At least he gave up the ridiculous looking cowboy hat that a man without a neck should never wear. No dog in her right mind would wear cowboy boots which pinch your toes into grotesque shapes and are almost impossible to walk in. The picture below shows Dangerous' decline from his high fashion, handmade Wilson cowboy boots to a surgical shoe.
Cowboy Foot Wear for the Vain
It's well known that Old Dangerous has a high pain threshold; however, our September Escalante River hike finally convinced him that surgery was necessary. I am not sure I could have walked 20 miles carrying a pack on those toes. At least he had the good sense to visit a qualified medical professional rather than having Utah Jack, Fremont Bob, or Walking Horse Bill try and fix his foot. They all had their preferred procedures from amputation to flattening and straightening his toes with an anvil and hammer.
This time, Dangerous had the good sense to plan his surgery after the hiking season ended and horse riding slowed down. In May, he had prostate surgery that kept him sidelined for six weeks, and you can imagine how that affected his cheery personality. He scheduled his surgery about right this time, but he couldn't keep his big mouth shut at the hospital which almost cost him more than his toes. The surgery occurred the day after the Presidential election which, as you know, didn't go as desired for predominantly Mormon Utah. Well, as you probably guessed, Dangerous couldn't help himself and had to bait all the Republican doctors operating on his foot. If I have the story right, the anesthesiologist told him to "shut up if he knew what was good for him." It might have been Dangerous' comment that the losing candidate could still be President of Utah that set the doctor off. Dangerous always scratches his head in puzzlement when he gets these reactions, and mutters something about those humorless SOB's who don't understand or appreciate satire. Even a sheep dog like me knows the difference between satire and sarcasm, and I didn't attend college for 14 years like those doctors.
I suspect to take a little revenge the doctors and nurses decided to wrap his foot in a camouflage bandage suggesting that he really has right wing tendencies. But little did they know that Dangerous has deep roots in the redneck community which he tries to keep secret from his few left leaning, intellectual friends. Most of his buddies know that he fits in better with the crowd at the Cross Roads of the West gun show rather than with a liberal group attending an academic symposium. Just ask him and he will freely tell you he is just a redneck kid who went to college who prefers reading books to fixing his own pickup truck.
By the looks of his foot, I think those doctors got their revenge. They told him that by summer he will be able to run barefoot on the beach. I suspect that they are putting him on due to his "satire" before surgery. By summer, young children will still run shrieking to their mother's at the sight of his bare feet. But, I doubt that he really cares as long as he can get his cowboy and hiking boots back on and hit the High Plateau trails without nagging pain. I will let you know how it all turns out. Love to hear from you!