Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Parking In the Rear

It was a beautiful day, with big puffy clouds sailing through the blue sky overhead.  I was 12 years old, and riding a new Western Flyer Buzz Bike, ready to take on the world.  The Buzz Bike was my third bicycle, not counting the one I learned to ride on.  It was a replacement for my Spyder, which had gone to charity a few years earlier when I got Big Red.

The Buzz Bike was more suited to the proto-bmx dirt riding my friends and I were all getting into.  Jumping on the local trails, known as "The Ramps", was all the rage with us, and my 26"-wheeled middleweight just wasn't working.  So, I wheedled and begged and did all of the other things 11-year-olds will do, leading up to their 12th birthday, to talk my mom and dad into getting me a jumpable bike.

So, on this day, I was cruising right along, looking at the clouds,enjoying a beautiful Spring day... all right in my world... thinking to myseWHAM!

I was out for a few minutes, I think.  The next thing I knew, anyway, I was lying in the middle of the street, and my chin felt like Muhammad  Ali had used me for a speed bag.  I turned my head, painfully, to the right and saw my bike, sitting perfectly upright, with its front wheel jammed under the rear bumper of a parked Chevelle.  A small spot of blood marked the ridge of the fender, where my chin had hit when I slammed into the rear end of the car.

I got up, slowly, my head spinning, and tried to pull my bike from under the car's bumper.  The tire had jammed so far under the bumper that quite a bit of weight was resting on the tire, and it took me a few tries to get it free.

Once I got the bike free, I turned it around and rode home.  The day no longer seemed quite so wide open.  I spent the next week, or so, with Kirk Douglas's chin, a painful reminder of my lack of attention.

At least I learned a lesson from the crash, much like a toddler who has touched the stove.  I have yet to run, full speed, into the rear of another parked car, since then.

Burn to learn...


1 comment:

  1. Man that hurts. I have yet to hit a park car but when I was about that age I mated with a tree. Actually the bike mated with the tree. I mated with the stem.
    Good story. Keep it up.


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