massive, beautiful bike crash (CSI: Arlington — call me)

Short version: Me, cycling on two-lane Mt. Vernon trail along Potomac, traveling between 10 and 15 mph in slightly overcast 80 degree weather. The Unsub, a young, stupid male between the ages of 6 and 11 approaches from the opposite direction on a red bike in my lane, riding in parallel with his apparent friend at approximately 5 to 10 mph. Instead of returning to his own lane, the subject swerves off the path toward the grass to my right — at exactly the same time that I veered off my side of the path to avoid him. Bam!! HUGE collision — both of us on the ground, twisted up with our respective bike frames.Despite the massive impact, we were both lucky. No major injuries reported. When i looked over at the kid, he seemed to be missing a big tooth or two, but there was no blood, so hopefully the teeth just hadn’t come in yet. After some minor bike re-tuning and a dust-off, I was back on the trail and the kid was up and gone before any useful words could be exchanged.Long version: I’m in a bit of manageable pain at the moment, but the whole experience turned out to be a great rush. There was something amazingly poetic about that moment before impact. That moment when you’re completely lucid about the disaster that’s going to take place in the next millisecond, and yet you’re just one millisecond past being able to take any other course of action that could prevent this from happening.So in this strange half-second, your only option is to surrender to the tragedy unfolding before your eyes, to accept the unraveling fate. The lack of needing to make a decision was surprisingly freeing.And while the sore left half of my body may say otherwise tomorrow, the forceful collision of metal and atoms in that crash was also strangely satisfying. Sort of like the release of energy that comes from breaking a glass bottle against a brick wall, or even from experiencing a thunder and lighting storm. The sheer unpredictability of the whole event carried some intrinsic value for me, which I can’t completely explain. Both the collision and the unpredictability of the event are just so rare that they seem somehow precious. Of course, my outlook would probably be a lot different if I was writing this from a hospital bed… I guess it’s just nice to be reminded of your own vitality now and again.

3 thoughts on “massive, beautiful bike crash (CSI: Arlington — call me)

  1. what, no pictures? i hope the 8 year old feels better today than you did. you should try something less dangerous – i told you drinking while biking was a bad idea!

  2. <i>I guess it’s just nice to be reminded of your own vitality now and again.</i>I hurt myself todayTo see if I still feelI focus on the painThe only thing that’s real

  3. if there was alcohol involved, maybe these ribs of mine wouldn’t still hurt so bad…yea ficke, where’s reznor when you need him

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