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A Bit of Hip Hop

So Hip it Broke[1]

Sat Jul 7 13:55:27 2012

If you follow the Shadowcat News or our Facebook Page, or indeed follow me on Twitter, you will know that Shadowcat's Matt S. Trout recently broke his hip.

Much to evereyone's expectations Matt was sober and awake when this happened. It was a combination of loose paving stones, very bad weather (so quite treacherous pathways), an over-reaction to an old injury (I will let Matt explain that one), and the disguise that Matt uses that makes people think he is a young man when he is in fact a sprightly septuagenarian.

There was a lot of surprised people who responded to my original tweet and a whole heap of well wishing and some jocularity. I think it would be unfair if I didn't collect and show some of them here. They show the concern and love that people have and the broad range of humour that accompanies the circle of people we know.

Instant Messaging

  • PerfDave changed the topic of to: mst: So hip it broke.
  • Chuck: YOUCH! That'll teach him to be sober :)
  • <kthakore> Give my bests to mst. Hope he is doing better!

Alternative titles to the News post: Taking a Break*

  • genehack@: woulda gone with 'Breaking News'
  • ubu@: I suppose "Tragically, Hip" is a bit much :-)
  • Hip to be Square
  • Wrong way to be a Hipster


  • @leon_timmermans: Ouch! :-(
  • @mithaldu: That really sucks. Hope the break is not too bad and heals quickly!
  • @kraih: Please give him my best wishes for a speedy recovery!
  • @reneeb_perl: i wish all the best for @shadowcat_mst
  • @CMDB3: Now that sounds alot more believable than sober and falling over.
  • @CMDB359: @shadowcat_mst ouch. hope the op goes well mate
  • @bytemeorg: @shadowcat_mst I'm so sad to hear this!!
  • @sjoshuan: That sounds painful. :-( Wishing a speedy recovery to @shadowcat_mst!
  • @rjbs: Holy cow! Send my well wishes and a tun of beer.
  • @rcaputo: @shadowcat_mdk It probably was a sobriety-induced form of Mal de Debarquement Syndrome. …
  • @burakgursoy:( I hope @shadowcat_mst recovers quickly
  • @sungo: @shadowcat_mdk Stop telling people he was sober and we can "correct" the story.
  • @perigrin: @sungo correct? Or improve!
  • @shadowcat_mdk .@perigrin @sungo a skydiving @shadowcat_mst broke his hip during rampant free fall intercourse with a number of willingly greased people.
  • @perigrin: @shadowcat_mdk start it "in an ill fated attempt at a new lightning talk" and I think you have something…
  • @perigrin: A really Complicated refactor to Devel::REPL ‪#howmstbrokehiship
  • @kiphampton: A desperate dive at a disappearing TARDIS. ‪#howmstbrokehiship
  • @trg404: @shadowcat_mst "While working on a new lightening talk he tragically slipped on an ill placed squid"
  • @garu_rj: @kiphampton @perigrin @sungo @shadowcat_mst @shadowcat_mdk he did mention he was going to work hard on Perl 6, didn't he? ‪#howmstbrokehiship‬
  • @Itwentthisway: ‪#howmstbrokehiship‬ the people of the future trying to free themselves of their machine overlords?
  • @garu_rj: @shadowcat_mst here's to a smooth operation and recovery!
  • @TokenScandi: Ouch! Raising a glass to @shadowcat_mst's speedy recovery!
  • @kiphampton: @shadowcat_mdk @shadowcat_mst Oh, NO! When you see him, give him our best.
  • @maddingue: @shadowcat_mst ouch! (>⌢<)
  • @elbeho: @shadowcat_mdk @shadowcat_mst I hope he'll recover soon.
  • @graemefowler: Oh crap that's bad. Fingers crossed for a good outcome.


  • Jefferson Kirkland: Please send Matt my wishes for a speedy recovery!
  • Marc Chantreux: all my wishes!
  • Ella Westerly: Oh my god, broke a hip? That's...awful. Mark, please send him ♥ from me. :((
  • Jamie Moorehead: Oh no! That's awful.
  • Jaime Horrocks Kinyon: What? He's entirely too young to go around breaking hips and what-nots. I could say the same for walking around sober. We here at Chez Kinyon deeply disapprove of this behavior:p Give him our love, though, and well wishes for his quick and speedy recovery!
  • Paul Makepeace: Yikes, sorry to hear that. Cross fingers for him!
  • Ray Percival: Pass on all my best and love to him. Hope he recovers quickly and well.
  • Nuno Smash Carvalho: Wishes of a speedy recovery for mst !!
  • David H. Adler: Clearly, sobriety is overrated. Seriously, though, send my best wishes for a speedy recovery.
  • John SJ Anderson Damn!: Condolences to Matt.
  • Karen Pauley: Poor Matt :(
  • Scott McWhirter : Sorry to hear that... though it does reinforce the angry old man connotation... get well soon mst!
  • Luis Motta Campos : Ouch. That hurts. Please send MST my wishes of speedy recovery.
  • Steph Sims: Ouch!
  • Wga Van Dijk : Oowwwww... Please give him a big hug from me and from Liz! Dammit, who does he think he is, breaking a hip before he is a senior citizen, he did not have the right. Please ask him to stop doing such things. And to get better soon.
  • Jeff Goff : Disbelieve, as I've never known him to be sober :) However owww, sucks, let us know when you find out more, and tell him he has to be healed by YAPC::EU.
  • David E. Wheeler: Damn, sorry to hear about this. Heal fast, mst!
  • Woo O'Hara: give him my love xxx
  • Stevan Little : Honestly, this just confirms for me that Matt was really a grumpy old man in disguise. Hopefully he can make it to YAPC::EU and we can retroactively correct that whole sobriety problem.
  • Wga Van Dijk: Holy Matt... back home in a couple of days after breaking a hip. The man is superman. Really. Wow.

Matt has had an operation to place a plate over the break which should speed up the recovery and allow him some level of mobility during the many weeks/months that it will take for him to fully heal.

Just one day after the operation, and two days after breaking his hip, Matt was already on his feet. Some of this is his willingness to get himself up and mobile as quickly as possible, but for the most part it is the technique used in modern treatment of this type of injury. There is a real need to get the person active and to keep the muscles strong.

It is still way to early to judge the success of the operation, and to give any real feedback as to the expected recovery time and future situation. But the early indications are good.

Those of you who know Matt will not be surpirsed that he is already itching to get out of hospital, return to his friends and chat with you all online and in person. He is also showing the signs that he doesn't need quite so much of people fussing, so it didn't knock any of the 'cantakerous old man' out of him :)

I will of course keep everybody up to date on any changes in his condition. Please feel free to send messages to Matt via myself or Shadowcat or in any other manner you see fit.


If anyone has feedback (and until we have a commenting system) please don't hesitate to email me at: m.keating [at], if your comments are useful, fun, or just plain interest to me, or if I think will be useful to others, then I will add them to the end of this post, let me know how you would like to be named (anon, nick etc.).


[1] This comment originally made by perfDave in the channel.

Mark Keating is: Managing Director of Shadowcat Systems Limited
Director and Secretary of Enlightened Perl Organisation
Chair of the Marketing Committee for The Perl Foundation
Co-Founder/Co-Leader of North-West England Perl Mongers
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Mark Keating is the organiser of the London Perl Workshop (since 2008), has joined the organising team for the QA Hackathon in 2011, the TPF GSoC Mentors/organisers 2011, the Dynamic Languages Conference 2011.