Did you see what I did with the apostrophe there?

Remarkably, as a family we have somehow managed almost 21 years without a single broken bone.  Here’s how Jack became our first casualty.

“Mum, can I go on the computer please?” was Jack’s request after returning home from school one evening two weeks ago and completing his homework.

“Well, you haven’t had any exercise.  Why don’t you go and use the trampoline for ten minutes” came the parental reply.  That was just enough time for Jack to bounce a few times and land awkwardly on his thumb.

Upon gingerly returning back into the house and waiting for a convenient break in familial conversation, Jack announced, “Excuse me – sorry to interrupt – but I think I have broken my thumb.”

Here’s how it looked.  We were inclined to agree with him.


If memory serves me right it’s normally a bit straighter than that.

A quick trip to the Sheffield Children’s Hospital Accident and Emergency department confirmed our suspicions.  Here’s an X-ray.  See the jaunty angle of that bone?  It didn’t used to look like that.


They bandaged him up, put him in a sling and made an appointment for him to come back for an operation.  He said he always wanted to have a sling, so at least that was some consolation.



The operation involved, as far as I can make out, being put under general anaesthetic and some medic pulling on his thumb until it was pointing in vaguely the right direction, then putting a cast on his wrist.  Here he is wielding his new appendage.


I know what you are thinking: “but how will Jack manage to practise his double bass and piano under these conditions?”  Good question.  There has not been much of a compromise on the practice schedule, although it turns out that he has broken his “trigger thumb” for when playing the trombone.  As you can see, operation of the trigger is rather dependent on being able to flex the thumb.  You could say he has been rendered trigger unhappy by his predicament.



I would like to say that this is the reason his scales and arpeggios were somewhat lacking in the grade III trombone exam that he had today, but I rather think this had more to do with lack of familiarity than incapacity.

Anyhow, this all goes to show the pitfalls of exercise.



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