Sunday, October 11, 2020 (No Play)

It’s been months since I’ve written anything in this blog.

I’ve been continuing to ice my right knee almost every night. It’s gotten somewhat better—such as going up and down stairs isn’t nearly as painful—but it’s definitely not normal. It’s a long recovery.

On September 28, I paid a visit to Dr. Thomas Welle, Orthopedic Surgery Specialist. My wife met with him about her shoulder and he gave her some exercises to improve it. He is the team physician for UCSC, Cabrillo Junior College, six high schools and the NBA D-league Santa Cruz Warriors basketball team, so he can’t be too bad. We had a brief visit—about 5-7 minutes—where he moved my knee around and then arm to check out those joints. He said I was young to have a tear in my rotator cuff, but it was possible. He seemed not too convinced there was a tear in the knee, or at least, not one that was greatly significant. He said if I was open to surgery, then he could set me up with an MRI. I said I was.

On Friday morning, October 9, before work, I had my first ever MRI. It took roughly 45-60 minutes and they first scanned my right knee then turned me around on the sled and scanned my right shoulder. I was so tired, I almost dosed off in the machine which was loud even with ear plugs and noise-blocking earmuffs.

The MRI trailer.

Later that day, I received a phone call from Dr. Welle. He said the scans showed a partial tear in my right knee and also a partial tear in my shoulder as well along with a minor bone spur. He also mentioned an effusion and a little arthritis in my right knee . . . I later looked up effusion: “water on the knee, occurs when excess fluid accumulates in or around the knee joint. There are many common causes for the swelling, including arthritis and injury to the ligaments or meniscus (cartilage in the knee).” He asked what I wanted to do. He said he didn’t recommend doing both at once. I said, given that the knee is only a couple of month old and the shoulder is years, I’d start with the shoulder. He said someone would call to schedule an appointment.

Alain and I have been drilling once or twice a week after work. I got smart and since we work in an art store, I grabbed a 36″x48″ stretched canvas and, propped up horizontally, works as a regulation height net—at least, the height near the posts (34″ at the center). Of course, you can’t see though it, but that adds to the challenge a bit. We have tape on the carpet indicating the NVZ line distance. The only thing is the carpet dampens the bounce . . . at least it is thin commercial carpet with foam underneath. Alain, during one session, admitted, “I forget that you are playing left-handed!”

Monday, October 12, 2020 (No Play)

While at the oral surgeon waiting room, I got a call from the orthopedic surgery scheduler. I had to tell her that I’d call her back, but then promptly forgot. Oops. I’ll call tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020 (No Play)

Tonight was the Annual General Meeting of the Santa Cruz Pickleball Club. About 20 members joined the Zoom conference.

Me (upper left) along with some other AGM attendees.

Officers of the club were voted on. News that the club website is moving to was shared. The officers decided to sell off some of their used nets for only $50. I told them I’d take one.

Monday, October 19, 2020 (No Play)

So, last week, I got a call from Sandy, the surgery scheduler. I explained that I was on another call at work. I called back the next day and asked for Sandy. I was put on hold and a woman came on the line and we scheduled my trip there for today, Monday, October 19.

This morning since my wife and daughter were both working, I was able to get my dad to drop me off for surgery. I was about 30 minutes early. I got quizzed about COVID at the door then checked in at the desk and waited about 20 minutes before they brought me in back to an examining room. There was some serious confusion. I was not scheduled for surgery after all. It turns out that when I called and asked for Sandy, they’d connected me with the main pool of appointment schedulers and they set me up for a simple office visit. Arg.

I’m now scheduled for shoulder surgery on the morning of Friday, October 30.

Friday, October 23, 2020 (No Play)

This morning, Leslie stopped by my work at opening. She had a trunk full of three used pickleball nets from the courts at Willowbrook (in Aptos). I got my choice. She said I these bags were in better shape than the one the club had already sold from Brommer. I picked one with a good zipper though the metal parts inside were older according to Leslie. Fine by me, regardless. As long as I don’t have to fight to get the poles back in the bag!

Number of days on a court: 358 (Still)
Number of total hours: 1,011.5 (Still)

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