My hands are pretty messed up from living on a ranch. My nails are short on purpose and unpainted. The skin is wrinkled. I think of my hands as yet another important tool to get the work done. Not some fluffy, pretty things that are a fashion statement. My husband feels the same way I do, so no argument there.
I sometimes look at my opposable thumb and marvel. Without that evolutionary adjustment we wouldn’t be the Handy Men and Women that we are. The archaeologists called us “Homo Habilis” and it’s so true. We take our abilities for granted, but I like to remind myself what a precious thing it is to be able to hold something. I count my blessings every day.
The one thing I can say about my hands is they’re not all banged up. Wrinkled, yes. Dry, yes, Banged up, no. This is because I wear gloves all the time. It seems like I have about 100 pair of gloves, but it’s really only about eight. In the picture above I didn’t include my winter gloves. Those are my summer gloves. This is my favorite pair of gloves.
They have a leather palm, and they’re washable. They also have a Velcro closure to keep debris from getting inside. Everyday when I feed the critters I use these gloves. Alfalfa isn’t the softest thing in the world and the stems will really poke your hands if you don’t wear gloves. My husband grabs the flakes with his bare hands, but then he’s a MAN and they “don’t need no stinkin’ gloves,” do they? He comes in from working and his hands are all banged up. I think he’s a little bit proud of his ability to endure discomfort. I can endure only so much so I have a lot of gloves. When we go to the hardware store I always go over to the glove display and see what new gloves are there. I’m maxxed out right now so I don’t buy them, but I always like to have at least one pair that is new so if the pair I’m wearing gets soaking wet or some such thing I have another pair that can jump right in and take its place.
My line up of gloves includes one pair that have the tips cut off so I can pick small things up without taking the glove off. I also have a pair of left and right hand golf gloves – of all things – because they turned out to be thin enough so when I need protection for doing something fine they are just the ticket. I have some deer skin gloves that are great for riding horses.
I think there should be an art exhibit of gloves somewhere sometime. I think it would be interesting to gaze at each pair and speculate what the owner did and how they must have saved the owner’s hands from discomfort while helping them do a task that would have been very unpleasant un-gloved. I think there’s beauty in a mundane object like a well-worn glove.