Location: St. Vincent & Grenadines

You were driving home in the dark on one glass-slippered heel, window sliced open and bathing in the snowliquor of the night air. We heard you singing, and couldn't bear to wake you.

21 November 2006

With my lightning bolts a-glowing, I can see where I am going.

I got hit by a car about two hours ago.

The Thanksgiving break just started for me, and I decided to walk downtown and see a movie tonight. It was dark and raining. I was carrying a large black umbrella. I stepped into a crosswalk with the umbrella tilted toward the highway, blocking the view of my body. The woman turning left onto the sidestreet wasn't looking carefully. I felt something hit me from behind, and then I was up in the air, and then I was sitting down hard on the asphalt. And then I was stumbling to my feet and yelling nonspecific interjections in reference to a popular monotheistic deity. If I'm to be consistent with my generally atheistic philosophy, I'm going to have to cultivate some punchy, one-syllable secular oaths that my animal brain will be able to access in moments of sudden, shocking pain. I know, I know, there's profanity, and believe me I'm not afraid to use it; but, like monotheism, it's so old hat. Have I pissed anyone off yet? Grandma? Sorry.

Anyway. I'm taking big gasping breaths and just kind of shouting wordlessly, and the woman comes out and is repeating oh my god I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry and then I sit down on a low wall out in front of the First Church of Christ, Scientist while she goes to move her car out of the street, and she comes back with her cellphone and she's talking to someone while I sit there gasping, shaking, getting my breathing under control. I stand up again and feel around behind me and there's no blood, no torn clothes. I can't feel anything especially tender or painful, just sort of this huge thumped feeling all around my tailbone. The woman asks me what I want to do.

Now my response was instinctual, and I didn't stop to question it. What I told her was that I was okay, that there would probably be a bruise but it didn't seem too serious, and that I was on my way to see a movie and would just as soon keep walking so I didn't miss it. I said, "I'm okay with having this just be a wake-up call for both of us. Neither of us was looking where we were going. So let's just be careful, and have that be what we take away from this."

She asked me over and over if I was sure, if I was really sure, if I was really okay. I assured her that I was, asked her again to be careful out there, and continued walking downtown. As soon as I started walking again the pain of the thumped area increased significantly, but I kept going. It remained quite painful all through the movie, all through my walk home, and remains quite painful now as I sit (ow) at my desk typing this. Tomorrow I'll have my backside looked at, but I think I'll make it through the night once I get a couple of beers in me.

I suppose there might have been something altruistic or at least compassionate in my instinctual response, a choice to let a probably very nice woman, who made a mistake I myself could easily have made, avoid negative repercussions to her insurance and possibly her police record. She's driving more carefully now, I'm sure, and isn't that the point? What more is actually needed?

So there's that, but here's another thing: I really wanted to go see a movie tonight. Getting hit by a car wasn't in my plans, but injury plus movie balances out better than injury plus sticking around to give statements or whatever, minus movie.

I really like movies. Yeah, run me over in a crosswalk, whatever. Just don't make me miss the previews.

The movie was Stranger Than Fiction, which features Emma Thompson, Maggie Gyllenhall, Dustin Hoffman (yeah, Will Ferrell's the main character, whatever) and a soundtrack by Britt Daniel of Spoon -- all strong selling points. I enjoyed it immensely, despite my aching tuches. It's a snappily written metafictional romantic comedy, and I'm a sucker for those. Under my present circumstances I won't say "run, don't walk to the nearest theater", but aside from that, it's got my firm recommendation.


Blogger Jemaleddin said...

Okay, but next time do the hospital thing. You remember internal injuries, right?

4:15 AM  
Anonymous geena said...

Oh no!!! I hope that you're okay. I can't believe that you didn't go get checked out - do that as soon as you can. What if your broke your tailbone?

6:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're far more altruistic than I am. Some injuries, like neck/spine stuff, don't show up for a day or two. I hope you at least got her name...


6:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you are ok! And now when people ask you what you are thankful for over Thursday dinner, you can tell them it's a good thing she wasn't driving a Hummer.


11:07 AM  
Blogger Felix Helix said...

The doc says I'll be just fine. It was a butt concussion. I'm shook up and bruised, but nothing is broken. It's going to hurt for a couple of days, and then start getting better.

Didn't get her name, ChgoRed. Didn't want it. She got the crap scared out of her, same as me; that's enough.

8:43 PM  
Blogger Wesley said...

Did they really say "butt concussion"? That's awesome. I mean, considering.

Glad you're OK and be careful out there. There's lots of cars but only one Felix Helix.

8:33 AM  
Anonymous fred said...

What does your ass know, that it can forget when it gets a concussion? Just curious. Glad you're okay.

8:58 AM  
Blogger Felix Helix said...

My ass knows more than you can possibly imagine.

Well, it did. Formerly. Now it's just a dumb ass.

10:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hardy har har;)

3:24 PM  

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