Family Ties, PSAs

S.O.S.! “Some Outrageous Sh*t” you won’t believe!

Earlier this summer, my parents went on a long-awaited Alaskan cruise. It had taken my father until his retirement to convince my mom, the infamous Babs, to set foot on the next Titanic.

She readied herself with Dramamine and shock therapy and off they went. Over the coming days, she sent fun updates and spectacular pictures.


My siblings and I were delighted to see things going so well. On the last night of their cruise, I noticed a mysterious post on Facebook:


I chose to remain optimistic. Perhaps they’d won a “Meet the New Kids On the Block in Anchorage!” giveaway, or at the very least, had had to stay an extra week and fold towel swans to pay off their bar tab.

Then? I got this:

Like…”severed” severed?

Because Babs was fighting for time on one of the ship’s few computers at 75 cents per minute, I didn’t get any more details. I only had time for one quick response.


I let Babs’ boss know she might not be back in the office until the following week, and added that I’d also let him know when we could safely begin the pun-off. He immediately texted Babs,

“I hope you can still catch your flight. Would hate to see you have to thumb your way home.”


Once Babs had proper access to cell towers and data, I learned that my dad had amputated his left thumb from the nail up that morning by leaving his hand in the door frame of their bathroom. The doors were made of Black Sabbath-level heavy metal and could swing shut from their sheer girth.

Now known as the guillotine.
Now known as The Guillotine.

The cruise ship medic said there was no saving the tip of his thumb, though Babs had dutifully brought it with them to the infirmary.

Hang on, Babs. You forgot the straw paper heart.
Hang on, Babs. You forgot the straw paper heart.

They eventually made it to the nearest hand surgeon in Anchorage, four hours away by bus, where doctors the doctor said my father would fare just as well coming home to New Jersey for surgery. No surprise, since their facilities were straight out of Northern Exposure.

Any John Corbett fans out there?
Any John Corbett fans out there?

I expected to see an ashen-faced version of my father, loopy on pain meds, when they finally landed back home. Instead, he was completely lucid and trying to carry his suitcase. Which is when he spotted my welcome home gift:


Babs needed sleep the way I need bacon-flavored vodka and compliments, so I drove my dad to a nearby Urgent Care center, part of Summit Medical Group, for a proper evaluation.

Another fantastic pun courtesy of Babs' boss.
More fantastic wordplay, courtesy of Babs’ boss.

It’s been a little over two months, and Pops has made a pretty full recovery. Did you know they offer physical therapy to the digitally disabled?

And since he’s doing so well?

Bring on the puns.

Bring on the puns. You know you want to.
You know you want to.

Do you have any vacation FIASCO STORIES HAND-Y?


55 thoughts on “S.O.S.! “Some Outrageous Sh*t” you won’t believe!”

  1. You guys are hilarious! I didn’t expect to start laughing so soon after reading the words “severed his thumbs.”

    (That waiting room would be rough for me. Claustrophobia atingle just looking at the image!)

    1. I think his eventual funeral is going to be a riot! Wait. That came out wrong. I’d stick my foot in my mouth, but I think my family needs to spare all the parts we can.

  2. Left thumb? That’s a totally useless digit anyway… I cut mine pretty badly early in my career, and the boss said I don’t need that finger to type so I shouldn’t worry about it (and shouldn’t take any sick days).

  3. Rule of thumb??? Avoid doctors dealing with 19 hours of daylight. But good news, your dad’s thumb war domination is OVAH !!!!!!!!!!!

  4. When I read that first pun, I did a facePALM. Getting that cryptic message and having to wait to get details must have been a NAIL biter. Sucks that I had to wait because of the ship’s crappy internet. Cmon, it’s the DIGITal age! You’d think they’d FINGER that kind of thing out by now.

    OK, I’ll stop and leave some puns for others…

    1. Of course. I think, “Go Jules GOOOO HURRY UP GO FOR THE LOVE OF BACON WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR I LOST MY F#$^$%*&%^ THUMB OWWWWWWW” has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?

  5. On the one hand, horrified gaze at final image.
    On the other hand, holy shit still can’t get over the mental image of severing a finger via door slam.

    *flail dance of nope*

    (You can count the top two lines as both comment & pun because I am cool like that.) 😀

    1. Well played (my dad’s giving you a hand as we speak)!

      And you know what he said? You know what he said??? It was such a clean cut (in the door), it didn’t even hurt [when it happened]!!!

  6. This post had it all, horror, humor, Northern Exposure. Your poor dad! AHHHH! I cringe. And your mom retrieving it like a trooper. I would have panicked and fainted (this is why I shouldn’t be in the medical field….)

  7. In my youth, I’ve had my left-hand ring finger crushed twice in door jams. Once in the bathroom and once in a car. (Ouch!) Luckily it recovered both times.

  8. That is so messed up. I hope your parents were compensated for their stay and the medical costs. What an unsettling injury. I won’t make fun of him for it. Thumbs the word!

    I mean “mums”! I mean “mums”!

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