By Frank Borelli
It was a fairly typical Friday evening. I was on patrol, moving along the rowdy juvenile loiterers and looking for the known drug dealers. A fellow officer was on patrol in the next beat sector over and we’d occasionally meet at the line, brief each other on what was going on and then go back to our erratic patrols. When the radio squawked, it was him. He had a couple of our known dealers under surveillance and wanted to say good evening to them. One of them would likely drop whatever they were holding and bolt. True to form, one of us would gather the evidence while the other went on foot pursuit after the one that rabbited.
As I pulled up to the area, my fellow patrolman turned on his lights and started to pull in closer. His virtual announcement of his presence was intentional and got the desired response. Two of the three subjects just stood there unimpressed. The third one dropped a handful of baggies on the ground and started running… right toward me. I missed him as he came by though and ended up in a nice foot pursuit. Down this space between houses… around the end of this garage – slowing down to make sure I could hear him still running and not setting up an ambush… over this fence and OUCH! He kept going. Most of me kept going. My left hand did NOT keep going. It was attached to the fence by my wedding ring which had somehow managed to loop over one of the fence link ends.
While I got myself unhooked I realized two things: First, the subject was long gone. Second, I was lucky my finger wasn’t torn off. I was nearly 190 pounds plus all my equipment of momentum going away from the fence when the ring got caught. As it was I got a nice cut, some torn tissue and a dislocated knuckle. While my fellow patrolman got a nice collection of crack and some (possibly worthless) intelligence from the other two subjects, I got a gauze bandage and a trip to the hospital for stitches. When I was done at the hospital, released and sent home, I explained to my wife what had happened and suggested that it might be safer if I didn’t wear my wedding ring while I was at work. It was a common practice to NOT wear a ring – and a great many police wives HATED the practice. My wife was, shall we say, less than receptive.
Five years later I was divorced, remarried and working the street. I was wearing my wedding ring although my second wife had expressed her understanding if I chose not to. She wouldn’t like it, but she’d tolerate it. Because she would understand if I didn’t, and because I didn’t want her hurt or upset, I wore it. Then one night I managed to get my hand slammed in a card door and while the ring kept my knuckles from being crushed, it was warped and bent so bad that it had to be cut off my hand. Another hand injury; another unhappy wife and, in this case, a destroyed wedding ring. This wife didn’t divorce me though and I stopped wearing a wedding ring while on patrol even though she got me a new one, abbreviated ceremony included.
Those stories probably don’t sound too unfamiliar to many of you. Lots of officers, male and female, have had similar experiences. We’ve all seen pictures of fingers that have been “degloved” (all the skin and tissue ripped off) by a wedding ring that was caught on something while the rest of the body remained in motion. It’s a risk we don’t need but one we often take so that we can maintain our sign of commitment to the relationship we’re in. Thankfully, now there’s another option: The silicone rubber rings from QALO.
When I first saw the QALO rings I admit that my first thought was, “What a scam.” And I said as much to the QALO CEO, Ted Baker, over a lunch meeting. But after having an open minded discussion with him; after giving the rings themselves more consideration; after learning a bit about what QALO is all about, my attitude was drastically changed to the opposite. Now I wear a QALO ring every day, as does my wife – and a bunch of warriors I know. I use the term “warrior” because it covers a good spectrum of folks that include Marines, soldiers, airmen, sailors, coasties, cops, firemen, EMTs and more. The “more” isn’t just warriors either. I’ve recently become more involved in the outdoor community and a great many hikers, backpackers, off-roaders and such folks are wearing these rings religiously.
A couple paragraphs up I mentioned how my second wife (she says, “LAST wife,” and I say we’re both right) had an abbreviated ceremony when we replaced my wedding ring. Why would that be necessary? Well, let’s think about it – and bear in mind that it’s something the folks at QALO have given a lot of attention to.
Wedding rings aren’t just random metal bands that we wear for decoration. While plenty of people wear more than one ring for whatever reason, wedding rings serve a very specific purpose and have a few protocols that go with them.
You’re never supposed to take off your wedding ring. As the wedding ring has been blessed, and is therefore considered “holy,” and as it’s meant to represent not only an undying commitment but also an unbreakable bond, it’s meant to be worn from the moment of your vows forward. While, obviously, taking the ring off doesn’t mean you’ve broken your vows or reduced the level of your commitment, there are a great many people who view wedding ring protocol in the “old fashioned” way. A wedding ring is not meant to be taken off. A spouse – husband or wife – who takes it off is, somehow, reducing the weight or value of the vows made and the commitment expressed.
IF, for some reason, the wedding ring has to be taken off, in this case for safety reasons, wouldn’t it be better if it were replaced, albeit temporarily, with another ring rather than just no ring being worn at all? That’s where the QALO silicone rubber rings come into play. If your work is the kind where wearing a metal ring might end up injuring your hand, then while you’re on shift or performing those duties, why not wear one that won’t injure you but still allows you to wear a symbol of your vows and commitment?
Because of the fact that wedding rings are blessed and placed during the original ceremony, you can, if you choose (as my second wife and I did), have a small ceremony to get your QALO rings blessed and placed. (One observation here: If you’ve purchased QALO rings that are the wrong size – too small – it’s pretty humorous to watch your spouse attempt to get it on your finger.)
The bottom line is that the wedding ring is more than just decoration. It’s a symbol of commitment and the vows you’ve made. If the metal wedding ring is going to be unsafe, for whatever reason, or if you’re going to be doing things in places where you don’t want to risk losing it, there’s an option now: The QALO silicone rubber rings. Check them out and see if they’re an option you might want to exercise.