PATSY BRUMFIELD: Finding icy lifesavers in freezer



You may not like frozen okra or berries. Frankly, I love ’em – at least for medicinal purposes.

Friday night, I was just minding my own business with Grandpup Bonnie. As I came from the kitchen with a small plate of sliced apples, I forgot about the glass-top coffee table with the cast-iron legs that’s been sitting in front of my sofa for at least seven years.

Wham! That hurt, I thought, much as I’ve done the zillion other times I’ve smacked my toes into door facings, stool legs, etc. And so, in sharp pain, I looked down at my left foot, only to observe that my pinky toe was extended at a perfect right angle. My, I thought, that doesn’t look good.

Having dropped a 50-pound sewing machine on my right big toe years ago, I am familiar with modern medicine’s admitted lack of interest in ministering aggressively to toe hurts. I knew this latest incident was no candidate for the E.R.

Since it was just Bonnie and me, I calmly set the apple plate aside, bent down and coaxed my pinky toe back into its rightful position, with a little “pop” sound like when we used to play with plastic “pop beads” many decades ago. Clearly, though, I told myself, that’s not good enough for complete rehabilitation. Ice, I need ice!

I don’t make ice in my freezer. It’s small and crammed with sausage and okra for gumbo, all the bacon scraps I’m saving, and often a large bag of frozen strawberries, mangos and pineapples I blend up with yogurt and bananas for a tasty smoothie.

In lieu of ice, I went for the okra and the berries. Putting my damaged metatarsals on frozen pork sausage just didn’t seem right, even if it was smoked.

One towel on the floor, next bag of okra, next my left foot, frozen fruit bag atop that, all topped with another towel – I was committed to several hours with minimal movement, except to readjust the fruit for maximum ice-age.

Television was pitiful. “Law & Order” reruns were the optimal choice. I refrained from requesting a DVD because Bonnie doesn’t know how to operate the machine. No thumbs, you know.

So, there we sat for the duration as I texted my kind neighbor, Tina, about helping walk the Pup over the weekend because of my pathetic condition.

As bedtime approached, I gave it one Herculean effort to escort Bonnie into the side yard for desired results, then took three Ibuprofen and laid us both carefully into bed. Lord, I thought, don’t let Bonnie decide to nudge me in the night, as usual, by sitting on my feet. Thank you, Bonnie, if you only could read. She didn’t.

By Sunday morning, I figured I could do my church duties, but I had to wear flip-flops because my foot hurt too much for a shoe. I had to apologize to the congregation for violating my own “no toes at the altar rule.” I was forgiven.

Then, on the way to the chapel to assist with a training program, my damp flip-flops soles came into contact with the tile entryway and whoooooosh! my feet flew out from under me. I apologized for the profanity that sprung from my lips as my old body hit the hard floor.

I am going to try to be more careful. I also am restocking the freezer, just in case.

Patsy R. Brumfield writes a Thursday column and advises readers to keep extra frozen food on hand for medicinal purposes. Contact her at (662) 678-1596 or

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