A cut above

Let’s be honest – when you have a bandage anywhere on your head, people REALLY want to ask you what it’s about.

Bandages other places? Usually, no big deal. One on your knee? Obviously just a scuff from a fall. Back of the heel? Duh, blister. But prominently on your ear? Yeah, curiosity is coming out on that one.

Such was my day recently when I had to venture out with a great big Band-aid slapped on my right ear.

And why was I wearing a bandage on my right ear? Well, unfortunately, if I gave you the briefest of answers of why, you would stare at me and probably have more questions. Because the simple and brief answer is, “I cut myself shaving.”

So the first question that naturally would come out of that is, “Are your ears hairy, like, hairy enough you to shave them?”

And the answer is no, they are not. I have normal ears and normal hair and normal everything.

Your next question would most likely be, “Well, then how did you cut yourself shaving, if your ears aren’t super weird hairy things?”

To which I would reply (a) you’re being a little judgy and (b) sigh. OK, so I was in the shower. I have a shaving mirror in my shower, mounted on the wall. I prefer to shave in the shower, as that eliminates having to shave over a sink, which leaves two gross byproducts: Shave remnants and washcloths that will in no time be crusty dried washcloths.

As I was shaving, I noticed that the water was not coming down at exactly the angle I wanted it to. I’m a particular creature, and I like it a certain way. So I decided I would reach back and adjust the shower head. And that’s when I decided to use the hand that held the razor, and as I reached back, I ran it right across my ear and gashed myself with a cut that would have made Van Gogh proud.

Just as I hit my ear, I knew I had erred. I said, actually out loud to no one, “Oh, that’s gonna bleed…”

And bleed it did. I tried to see if standing under the water would make it stop. It did not. Rather, it made my shower floor look like one from a horror movie. As I got out of the shower, I decided I did not want to stop the bleeding with my towel, so I would dry off as much as I could prior to getting some tissue to put on my ear.

Fun fact: It’s a lot harder to dry off than you’d think while trying to avoid the dripping stream of blood coming from your ear.

Eventually, I got mostly dry, but then realized I had left a lovely trail of red splotches on the bathroom floor as I crossed the bathroom to retrieve a tissue.

Once I had the tissue in place, I thought I would be in the clear, and it would clear up like any shaving cut. Nope. Apparently, ears are, like, direct pipelines to the heart or something, and it was in no mood to stop bleeding.

I brought my wife into the situation, as she is a pro at handling these types of things. She applied some Neosporin to it, and properly attached a bandage to it. She also was the one who came to me every few minutes and reminded me to stop touching it to see if it was still bleeding. She’s good like that.

I have now gotten to the point where I don’t have to wear the Band-aid, although the cut is still fairly visible on my ear. But at the end of the day, I think we’ve all learned a very important lesson: Never adjust the shower with the hand that’s holding the razor.

Mike Gibbons was born and raised in Aiken, S.C. A graduate of the University of Alabama, he now lives in Mt. Pleasant. You can e-mail him at or follow him on Twitter @StandardMike or at


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