Believe it or not, I am still alive, but just barely. Vet school has tried its hardest to remedy that situation, but without success. In the past three weeks, I've poked and prodded annoyed horses, stuck my hand in an angry cow's mouth, been stepped on by an animal weighing more than half a ton, been exposed to what are most assuredly non-OSHA approved levels of formalin and noxious fumes from over 30 dead animals in a single room for hours on end, and been chronically deprived of sleep. How is it that I overcame all those challenges intact, yet almost met my demise at the hands (or stem, as it may be) of a squash? Not even once, but twice!
While dirt cheap, easy to cook, nutritious, and far too delicious for its own good, squash, I posit, poses serious hazards to one's personal safety. While cutting into an acorn squash several days ago, the stem popped off, sending the vicious teeth of the saw (yes, I was using a jigsaw to cut open vegetables. I probably should have seen this coming) into an innocent bystander (ie: my finger). For such a tiny cut, I felt like a total pansy for being in so much pain for a good 24 hours (the pain has stopped now, but it's still bleeding here and there). Come to think of it, I should have felt ridiculous for using woodcutting tools on produce, but in my defense, those buggers are hard to get into and I was really hungry at the time. As I was slicing my cadaver in anatomy lab (with more appropriate tools), my hand cramped up, and all I could think of was, "Oh God, when was my last tetanus shot? I'm going to die because of squash!"
In all honesty, if I had to choose a way to go, death by squash doesn't sound too bad. As long as I got to eat it first, it would totally be worth it. How does that old poem go? "It is sweet and fitting to die for one's country, but delicious to die for one's dinner." (That last part may or may not be a personal addendum.)