Saturday, April 01, 2006

Day Four. What Day?

I don’t know what the hell the guy was thinking. More than likely he just wasn’t. The state of mind that is “not thinking” is something that is common to all of us, even if it does happen to some more than others. One could certainly have asked the question of me 12 years ago when, as an 18-year old I decided that I could indeed break that cinderblock with a forceful twin dragon fist strike and no practice beforehand. It seemed like a good ending for my routine in the breaking contest at the time. Exclusively breaking boards would have been so very ordinary. What was I thinking? The question ran through my head on repeat as I stared at the open fracture on my hand. This was quickly followed by the thought, “Goddamn, it’s really starting to hurt. Am I still standing or am I passed out?”

What was I thinking? In hindsight, the answer is obvious. I wasn’t.

Now, in the wake of what is probably going to be a giant lawsuit and a huge insurance mess, all I can do is wonder what the guy was thinking. I didn’t mean to clip him, but I seriously didn’t think he would actually walk in front of my car as it bore down on him at almost 50 mph. As I reached the point where it was too late to do anything I could finally see that his head was turned in the opposite direction, just staring the wrong way (obviously) down the street as he jaywalked across four lanes of traffic + middle turn lane.

The brain is wildly amazing in its ability to actually think whole thoughts in fractions of a second. Now that I’m sitting at home awaiting multiple unpleasant phone calls from various entities I never wanted to speak with, I’ve been able to pick apart and illuminate what I thought in that split second before the fender made contact with his right side.

Didn’t his mother teach him to look both ways? I guess the answer seems obvious, but that would be shifting blame. His mother may have made monumental efforts to teach the basic lessons of modern life, but perhaps her son-now-crackhead-bum was just a retard off whom all lessons ricocheted in search of more receptive ears. One could ostensibly blame the crack, but I’m also uncomfortable with blaming that which is inanimate by nature. Perhaps he just woke up on the wrong side of the overpass and was too late camping out at the prime panhandling location near the Circle K gas pumps.

Seriously, who the fuck decides to take a leisurely, eyes-closed stroll across five lanes of traffic? Ummmm, crackheads, duh. (I really have to quit this terrible habit of asking the most obvious of questions.)

Here are some odd tidbits about the incident—It was surprising to me that he wasn’t screaming. He just sort of lay on the ground twitching and moaning, eyes all a flutter. Kneeling over him trying to wrack my brain and help while calling 911, I was taken aback by flood of intense and conflicting emotions. I felt horrible and sad because the guy was obviously in terrific pain. His leg was completely askew, and it looked as though he had lost part of his buttcheek. The reason for that, as it turns out, is that his hip was crushed and dislocated. The leg isn’t even worth talking about, and even if I were so inclined I don’t think that I could since the thought of it re-inspires a surge of intense nausea. I was also angry, to the point I wanted to kick him repeatedly for throwing a severe dampener on my recently acquired, new-and-oh-so-cool, location-based joy. As people gathered, some very close and others hanging back, a rush of embarrassment and the need to defend myself also rose up. It wasn’t vehicular assault with malice, it was unintentional vehicular assault with incredulousness.

That THE FUCK was he thinking.

Before? Who knows. After? Something along the lines of “Ouch”, no doubt, but more the extreme version, sponsored by Mountain Dew and shit.

It should all wash out in the end. The cops actually seemed sympathetic to my unfortunate position, and the insurance company hasn’t said “You’re fucked.” Not yet, anyway, and that’s really what is worrying me right now. I can just see myself obsessing about this, finally beginning to get over it after a couple of weeks, and then getting the “You’re fucked” phone call. D.A. takes humanitarian pity on homeless crack addict and decides to press charges on unrepentant guy with home. (I’m already whipping myself into an ulcer-ific frenzy)

My fourth day in the big city and I almost kill a crackhead. I’m all for excitement and high notes, but this is ridiculous.