Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Cats, Pillows, Pain, Death

Bizarro is brought to you today by Dangers of the Forest.

I've always found the underdog irresistible, so cartoons about animals eating people are automatically fun for me. That doesn't mean they're also "funny" but I think this one is kind of a giggle. Bacon bits, indeed. Ha.

My back hurts today. It is one of those sore muscles right in between my shoulder blades, you know the one. Evidently, anything you attempt to do with your body starts with this muscle. I can't touch my forefinger to my thumb without feeling a twinge in the middle of my back.

The way I achieved this unbearable malady was by throwing something at a cat in the middle of the night. There is a cat door in our bedroom and two nights ago when I went to bed the wind was blowing so hard that the cat door was staying open by a few inches and cold air was flowing in like a mini tornado. So I taped a piece of cardboard over it.

Even though none of our three cats had been out for hours because of the weather, they found this temporary barrier unacceptable and began picking at the edges of the cardboard with their little cat hands. I shouted at them a few times, which is as effective as blinking real hard at them, then eventually I rose up on one elbow and threw a pillow. Pinch went the back muscle, the cats scattered, and here I am.

Curse this mortal coil.


thinkyhead said...

Tendinitis. The worst. I was laid up for a month after simply mowing the lawn (with vigah!). Only thing I could do was occasionally yogafy myself, painful as it was. The whole awkward pose thing, crossed arms, breathing into the shoulders.... It gave some relief, and eventually I could use my upper body and arms again without pain. Balance is the thing. Keep stretching, brotha.

ojeano said...

Cure for the between the shoulderblades pinch: Take an aspirin or ibuprophen (anti inflamatory, not that silly acetometaphen) put a hot pack on the tender spot, lie flat on your stomach with no pillow, turn your head to the side, maybe turn it the other way a couple of times as you slowly drift off to sleep. When you wake up, you will be all well.

And in your case, also apologize to the cat for triggering it's claustrophobic nature. Throwing the thing was (tit for tat). No I'm not a doctor, Physical Therapist or Biomechanist... but I taught aerobics in the 80's! And I've been successful with this cure many times!

James said...

So in a Bear v. Human smackdown spectacular the bear would be the underdog?

Anonymous said...


I'm prone to the occasional back spasm. Depending on the location and severity, they can range from merely annoying to outright debilitating. I can be getting ready for work, lifting my arm to comb my hair ... and suddenly there will be a TWINGE of some little nerve bundle that will set off a slow but severe wave of pain that will make me miserable for DAYS.

BUT: I discovered that IF one of those twinges occures, if I immediately take 600-800mg of ibruprofen, lie down on the couch or a recliner and remain completely immobile (preferably reading a book) for a couple of hours, in most cases the pain will be aborted.

Piraro said...

Thanks for the suggestions, I'll try them out.

@James.. it's just that humans carry guns and win those battles more often than not. The guy in the cartoon has a whole bunch of guns in his tent. :)

Chriss Pagani said...

We can all see that the Lord Jesus Christ, because of His mercy, is punishing you for throwing something at a cat ...and gay marriage.

doug nicodemus said...

come on dan that is at least a hahaha

sorry about your back

biophile said...

Muhahaha! I love to imagine what would happen if the animals started to treat us like we treat them. This one reminds me of one of Ray Troll's designs:


As to your back pain, try accupuncture. I had a chronic muscle knot in the middle of my upper back and two treatments melted it away forever.

Melinda said...

If the pills ideas don't completely cure it, I do suggest either Tiger Balm or Salonpas. The former is best as an ointment and the latter is kind of like Icy Hot in a patch (but it does the job better, IMHO).

Salonpas are at Walgreens, either may be found in health food stores generally, and Asian food markets and shops often have them as well.
These are the only painkillers I keep with me anymore.

Marc Tellier said...

This is quite common amongst illustrators.

Try stretching every 45mins while working.

Yoga also does wonders!


Mark said...

Have loved your work for years.

For the back muscle thingy, bribe your CHNW to apply oil then massage with thumbs, etc. Stretching, heat, ice all might help too.


Lisa said...

Come see me! I'm a licensed massage therapist who specializes in Trigger Point Therapy and Myofascial Release. I help people deal with muscle issues everyday so I know what I'm talking about.

Yes, I do give out stretches, but it's the massage that releases the tension so the muscles can fully respond to the stretching.

Likely we don't live in the general geologic space. I'm sure there are qualified LMTs in your area. I'm not talking about spa/relaxation massage. I'm talking about *therapeutic* massage - focused work to problem areas using a number of modalities.

You do regular maintenance on your car? Do yourself a favor, and get on a regimen of regular maintenance for your body.

Likely it is an illustrator's affliction. If you can't change the lifestyle cause, then you need to do something to balance it out to maintain pain-free living.

Good luck!