the glass castle
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Dad got into a fght while he was drunk, and Jeannette was left to tend his wounds and stitch the gash in his arm.
I saw that Dad also had a big gash in his right forearm and a cut on his head so deep that I could see the white of his skull. I got a toothpick and tweezers and picked the rocky grit out of the gash. Dad didn't wince when I poured rubbing alcohol on the wound. Because of all his hair, I had no way to put on a bandage, and I told Dad I should shave the area around the cut. "Hell, honey, that would ruin my image," he said. "A fellow in my position's got to look presentable."
Dad studied the gash on his forearm. He tightened a tourniquet around his upper arm and told me to fetch Mom's sewing box. He fumbled around in it for silk thread but, unable to find any, decided that cotton would be fine. He threaded a needle with black thread, handed it to me, and pointed at the gash. "Sew it up," he said.
"Dad! I can't do that."
"Oh, go ahead, honey," he said. "I'd do it myself, except I can't do diddly with my left hand." He smiled. "Don't worry about me. I'm so thoroughly pickled, I won't feel a thing." Dad lit a cigarette and placed his arm on the table. "Go ahead," he said.
I pressed the needle up against Dad's skin and shuddered.
The Glass Castle