Glamorous Injury?…

So yesterday, I was working on my idea for this commission and it’s 100+ degrees outside with a heat index of 110 and it’s about 3:30 in the afternoon and we’ve got a babysitter lined up for 6:00 for the first time in over 6 months. Mom and I were thinking… how about dinner and then a movie, how luxurious would that be? So anyway, earlier in the day I went to the bike shop and got some degreaser and lubricant for my horribly dirty bicycle chain. I cleaned my chain (although probably not up to snuff of the more persnickety) and was antsy to go out and ride regardless of the heat warnings. I mean really, I had already gone out a few times in 98/99 degree heat what’s a couple more degrees? So I leave around 3:45 and I go to the end of my new urban route and turn around and I’m a bit low on water (I quaffed a big glass before I left the house and I have 2 bottles on the bike). The few sips that are left in the bottoms of both water bottles are hotter than the water in a hot shower and don’t really seem to slake the thirst very much. So on my return I pass the downtown waterfront park and the Belvedere and I know there’s some water fountains around there somewhere. Now I’d rather elaborate a truly glamorous story of attempted rescue… say that maybe I was riding along the railroad tracks parallel with a speeding train and could hear (how could I hear, I know) a young mother on the other side of the train screaming… “help, help, my baby, somebody help” and then I race the locomotive and dart across the tracks in front of it but as I cross the tracks the engine clips my back wheel and sends me flying 30 feet through the air and that’s why I cannot walk today. But… the truth is that the reason I cannot walk today is that while riding on the wide sidewalks of the waterfront park, I pass a man sitting on a bench (in the sun) and ask from my moving bike, “do you know where the water fountains are?” He mumbles something and I think about just continuing on my way and finding them on my own but I felt like he was being helpful so I decided to circle back. Now the sidewalks are wide but in the area I was at the sidewalks are in pairs with a stretch of sandy gravel betwixt with trees planted and that’s where the bench was that the dude was sitting on. If you ride a bike you know that sand is not a good surface for a road bike. As I circle behind the bench and the mumbling dude (Michael) points to the water fountains clear across the park, I say thanks and proceed toward the sidewalk again. So there was a 3 inch ledge formed by the edge of the sidewalk and the mushy sandy gravel and when my front tire hit the mushiness, my bicycle twisted sideways quickly and although I managed to kick out of my right clip-in pedal, my left foot remained attached and I fell to the left and my hip landed squarely on the corner of the ledge of the sidewalk. So there I am, 10 miles from home, lying on the sidewalk with my left foot stuck in the pedal clip (unable to twist it out because of the pain in my hip), sun shining bright, thirsty and writhing in pain… a pain I can’t remember having in quite some time. Dude is standing over me saying, “are you ok man?” and I’m swearing and saying no. He lifts my bike so that I can get my foot free and I try to stand by cannot and eventually crawl through the damn mushy sandy gravel to the shade of small tree. Michael asks if there’s anything he can do and I say that I’m dying of thirst so he takes my water bottles and goes and fills them up. I lie there in the gravel and wait for the pain to subside a bit. When he returns, I quaff an entire bottle of water and lie there for another 5 minutes and fortunately Michael is not much of conversationalist nor chatty at all. Eventually, it occurs to me that I cannot walk home because… 1, I have plantar fasciitis which is why I’m biking in the first place and 2, because I have bike shoes on with clips protruding from the bottoms and 3, (although I didn’t realize it yet), I cannot walk. I also realize that if I don’t get on the bike and make it home, the real pain is going to set in and I’ll be stranded “On The Waterfront” with no way to get home and then Quinnie, the babysitter, will arrive and Mom will think the worst, etc. So I mount up and pedal the remaining 10 miles trying to use only my good leg. When I get home I take a shower and limp around and think… we can still go out. It’s such a major ordeal to schedule a night out that I figured I could be in pain at the movies and dinner as well as at home staring at the wall. So we go out to dinner and about halfway through, I feel like I’m gonna faint and after dinner we abort the evening and head home. At home the real pain sets in and I sleep downstairs on the couch. I also have a nasty abrasion that runs from my wrist almost to my elbow and I think that’s what scared Sofia when I got home. She’s a doll and has been nursing me, bringing me blankets and fetching water and she helped me climb the stairs this morning which took me about 10 minutes. Unfortunately, there will be no throwing or working for at least a day or so. So Meredith, I swear I didn’t get injured to give you “accident company”. Anyway, glamorous injury… not even close and I’m gonna come out and say it… my first bicycle accident occurred at a speed of less than 1 mile per hour. On to a lighter topic… or heavier I guess depending on your take. I grew up in the north and have lived in the south since I was 19 which means I’ve lived here much longer than I lived there. Now, there’s dolts everywhere and the north is no exception, in fact my sister’s ex-husband is a dolt comparable to the one in this video, and I’m not posting this to cast aspersions on the south but when attempting to describe a nuanced flavor to the stupidity that the south has to offer to a northerner, I inevitably hit a wall where said northerner thinks that I’m exaggerating for effect or sometimes I simply am unable to relay the reality of it verbally. A good analogy is trying to relay a story about rampant marijuana use in the dormitories when I was in college to a person a generation or two later who grew up with “this is your brain on drugs” commercials. The younger person always looks at you during the story with that “wow, I didn’t realize you were a druggie” look. There’s a context to history that is very difficult to describe unless you lived through it. So here it is, the Basil Marceaux dot com candidacy for governor of Tennessee. Since it’s difficult to translate into English I will precede the video with a couple key points that he makes that may be easy to miss (especially for northerners)… first, he wants to do away with gun permits and have everyone have guns with no punishments whatsoever unless you kill someone in which case you will be murdered and then after that be sent to jail… presumably to rot. He also wants to grow grass in every vacant lot in Tennessee and turn that grass into fuel to sell for money for the budget. Look, I can’t make this stuff up, and of course there are larger issues here like why is this guy on TV at all and why does the news have to pretend that he’s legitimate. Maybe this is the result of generations of Americans having mercury put in their mouths by dentists…


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14 Responses to “Glamorous Injury?…”

  1. Miri Says:

    Yikes Jim! I hope you feel better soon!

  2. Judy Shreve Says:

    Ouch! Rest and get better! Isn’t it crazy how that kind of thing happens when you have a fun evening planned — hope you are feeling good again soon.

  3. Tracey Says:

    Having watched Gerry limp through the door many times with bike injuries and breaks, you have my sincere sympathy, it ain’t fun! I think we have Tenn. beat on the dumb ass syndrome. Check out this story about a sheriff here that was convicted, is now out of jail and running for sheriff again and people are supporting him!,0,4034248.story

  4. Myrtle Says:

    Gosh Jim. Sorry you’re in pain but I really appreciate you making me feel better. Oh ya, the other day while riding to work on my bike I started crossing the busiest street in downtown when I realized I couldn’t make it ’cause cars were coming both ways too fast so I slammed on my brakes so hard that my rear-end reared up and I fell smack in the middle of the busy street so morning rush-hour traffic had to stop while I got up. And I’m wearing this visor that’s black mesh and large made for a country club lady and the way I use it is I take my longish hair out of the top of the visor so I look like a crackpot with my hair falling over the visor and I’m wearing a clownish long-sleeved shirt and my yellowish pants, albeit Columbia brand, though I still look like a clown in my attire. Anyway, I was embarrassed but I just had to laugh at me and the normal people waiting for me to get up and go my merry way.

  5. michele Says:

    Ohhhh, I (almost) feel your pain. I had to quit riding my bike with my little Jack Russell when she almost killed me on my bike. There comes an age when falling off your bike is a major trauma incident. Now I get off my bike whenever there is a change in the surface I am riding on. Good for Sofia for being so nurturing to you.
    Oh, and we have those types of political wannabes here in Canada too, but we don’t generally let them on TV like that. It’s too embarrassing. šŸ˜‰

  6. naomi Says:

    Sounds painful. I will tell you, I met a man when I was in physical therapy (won’t go into that story) who’d stop by for a bit of a tune-up. He was about 71, had finally retired about 3 years earlier, but rode his bike every Saturday at a nearby park for a few hours. He’d get out of his car, open his truck, pull out his bike and prop it against the car, mount the bike, then take off his leg and drop it in the truck and take off. A huge pipe had rolled over his leg at work about 10 or so years earlier. I really pushed that day at p.t. Hope the healing is fast, having feet (no matter what problems) is so much easier.

  7. meredith Says:

    hey Jim- oh sh&#!I am so sorry and I have one thing to say-maybe two.
    First off ICE-ICE-ICE.
    then PAIN PILLS- go see someone right away.
    I have just started sleeping in bed again.
    I thought Mark was going to replace me with a dog or a new pillow.
    I went to PT today and it was worth the trip!
    i mean it Ice,pain pills and go see someone asap.
    Your buddy in pain.
    Although I am moving past it.
    There are crazies everywhere….

  8. thecapricorntm Says:

    Mate, do take care of yourself šŸ˜¦

    Hope you’re getting better soon.

  9. ang Says:

    far out jim whats going on over there,???? I’m reading a lovely story of a bike ride and suddenly i feel your pain….! I’m not quite sure whats going on in the vid but its election time here and not everyone is good off the cuff with commentaries and maybe its his first time around??? anyhoo rest up jimbo!! : ))

  10. Eugene Hon Says:

    Be brave mate, Valentino the doctor nursed himself onto the race track a few weeks ago, after he crashed out at high speed – he almost made it to the podium, with a leg brace in his first race. One should always have a very determine cause and or need to inspire us to full health and wealth and or a angel with wings, so that you could fly – rather have a redbull. I just watched some guys come off their bikes in the Tour De France – sjoe must be painful. The position you were in must have been very painful with your foot caught in the pedal – maybe you should consider yoga – it could relieve the pain in future mishaps. cant wait to see those lidded vessels decorated glazed and fired.

  11. Jeff Says:

    I was a City Council member and to get elected I defeated a guy that was almost as dumb as this guy….then two years later he got re-elected….the electorate out there is pretty dang cumb…and obviously so are the candidates.

  12. Peter Says:

    Heck Jim,
    I think we need this guy in our current Right leaning National Party, he’d raise the intelligence level by at least one percentage point!!! Our current clowns are trying to centralize everything, including brain surgeons, I kid you not! It is planned that Christchurch in the South Island of NZ should have all 6 neurosurgeons for the whole of the South Island, and the other places miss out. I don’t know if that means that the number crunchers think that Christchurch people have fragile sculls and the rest of us are more solid up top… A big protest in Dunedin on Friday as a matter of fact, where thousands turned out!

    Sorry to see that you’ve taken a tumble on the bike. Sounds not nice at all, and hope you soon are fit and well again,

    Best Wishes,


  13. judi tavill Says:

    I JUST saw this!
    and here I am going on about my fabulous new bike…DANG.
    OK… well… 18 years ago I was mountain biking with my then boyfriend-now husband Mike when I went over the handlebars- NO HELMET(it was hot…) but wearing thick black NYC off the street sunglasses and skidded down an hill on my FACE…. gravels and crap and I had the sensation of a tooth being pulled…The lens from the glasses had hit a major rock and popped out but those glasses probably saved my eye as the gash was off to the side…smelled like blood. Here we were in the Jim Thorpe, Pa 1 1/2 hours from Philly where Mike was living(I was living in NYC) and we went to the antique dealer we bought something from to get help… I walked back carrying my face…He carried the bikes… and she gives me Darveset(sp?)that she had in her cabinet…why she was stockpiling drugs…Anyway…I digress… Mike calls my Dad(we had been dating 6 months) and tells him what happened… Dad(in typical Dad form) says…”You broke her, you bought her” (and as you can see that was the beginning of the end for him…married to me 16 plus years now…)
    Mike was doing his residency in surgery and was friend with the guy doing his facial plastic residency and I was leaving one job for another and we didn’t know what my insurance was like so he decides to ask this guy yo meet us back in Philly and and him stitch me up on Mike’s kitchen table…(The whole ride back…I wanted to discuss our relationship…oy) When we get there he calls the guy and he says…just come across the street to the Emergency Room at Pennsylvania Hospital… I will meet you there… They got me in right away… scraped the crap out of my face and I ended up with 42 stitches… and Mike eventually “bought ” me a couple years later…Needless to say… I have been VERY weary of bike riding and had to really psych myself up… the cool bike…the awesome helmet….your accident makes me nervous BUT…. I will learn from it AND I feel your pain!
    Just hope I’m not number three of bad things happen in 3’s with Meredith….then you…. I DID herniate 2 discs last summer so maybe I get a pass…

  14. More International Confusion… « Sofia’s Dad’s Pots Says:

    […] lower leg hematoma here. Oh yes, and the bicycle accident that had me out of commission for 3 weeks here. In my defense the combination of aging, declining eyesight and foot pain can be dangerous to […]

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