Close Encounters with Concrete

It's a good thing I'm good at engineering (maybe), because common sense I obviously lack. Oh, and when mother nature and karma join forces, I should be afraid. Very afraid.

Hmmm…you really can't tell what's going on in that picture. There's some blood, but…well…not enough.

Yes, that's a little gratuitous. But anyways, what exactly do mother nature, a chunk of skin the size of a paper clip, and karma have in common? Well, sorry to bombard you with pictures, but I'm pretty sure it may have started with something like this (this was taken last Wednesday at 5:30).

That's me. My legs. Yes, my bike. In two inches of snow. After I had just biked home (ok, full disclosure: by the time I made it home, walked inside and grabbed my camera some of the snow fell off, and I had to make a short lap around my neighborhood to get this picture, which is only half as snowy as I originally was), I took this photo. I wasn't expecting snow at 6:00 AM when I biked to a spinning class (in fact, it was above freezing).

Or maybe, it was the conversation I had earlier that day (completely abbreviated and paraphrased).

Andrew: "Biking home in my 700x32's is going to be interesting today."

Me: "Don't worry about it. I'm biking home in my 700x23's."

Andrew: "Your dumb."

Shea: "So your walking right?"

Me: "Well, I'll bike and then if I slip I'll walk."

Andrew: "Your dumb."

Or maybe it was the cliff that I somehow butt walked/slid my way down after watching two friends go down head first at Vail (slight exaggeration: it was a 70 degree slope, my friend in skis took his skis off, slipped, slid 10 ft, went off a 5 ft cliff, landed on a rock, and then came to a full stop about 20 ft. lower. Needless to say he didn't hold onto his snowboard. My other friend took off her snowboard, took one step, didn't get any solid footing, started rolling (snowboard in hand), rolled/slid 10 ft, went off the 5 ft cliff head first, landed, rolled/slid really awkwardly some more, ran into friend #1, and stopped. If friend #1 wasn't there, she would have been stopped by the tree trunk about 5 ft away). Maybe I shouldn't have made fun of them.

Or maybe it was the type of arrogance that thinks its ok to bike at 20 mph on the Boulder Creek sidepath at night. The same kind of arrogance that launched me and my bike off the side of a bridge into a creek about a year and half ago, about 100 yards from where I just ate it. No…that couldn't be it.

Or maybe it was the icy patch at the end of the underpass at Arapahoe & Foothills. The one that looked like a shadow. The one that was a bit longer than expected. And that started much earlier than expected. The one that you didn't expect because the overpass at your house didn't have ice on it and normally does. The one that you can't turn on with wet/frozen road bike wheels. Well, I guess you can, as long as you're ok with using your chin as a brake.

Yeah. It was definitely that last one

9 stitches (ER called them sutures, but that word's only useful in a game of scrabble when you've got 2 u's) later:

Whatever the case, it didn't really hurt that much, it just bled a lot. And by a lot I mean, you'll probably find a puddle of frozen blood on the north side of the Arapahoe underpass. I mean, Bonfils probably should have been there, I'm not sure they'd ever draw blood from anybody ever again.

And about that hurt that much part. It really didn't. The part that hurt the most was when the ER nurse said they'd have to numb the area so they could put saline solution in it to clean it, and then stitch it up. That anesthetic hurt. Like, every time the nurse injected me with the anesthetic (a needle full's worth), one very large bee decided to treat me to a large dose of it's venom. And then pour lemon juice into it. And then scrape it with sandpaper. That type of hurt.

Of course, to clean it before they stitched it up, they had to use a saline solution. A saline solution is essentially salt water. They literally put salt in the wound. Ok, I didn't feel it at all (which was weird, because the nurse basically treated my cut like a burning building that only a needle full of saline solution could douse).

Ok, and to be honest in total, the experience hurt, but it wasn't the end of the world pain. Especially because the ER always manages to put you into a stall right next to somebody who's in an order of magnitude more pain that you. You could come in after nailgunning your hand to a 2x4, and I'm pretty sure you'd be put next to someone whose entire left legs are peeling off after being giving a million paper cuts and then getting dipped in hydrochloric acid. The lady next to me broke her back, and every time the doctors asked her to move, she uttered this painful groan that sounded as if moving might kill her (which, from the sound of it, almost did every time).

Whoops. That post was a little longer than expected. Apologies for the bloody pictures, I've been itching to throw pictures in my blog ever since I saw other people do it and realized that it was a simple way of keeping your reader engaged. More tales from winter break shall ensue, with lots of green pictures from Hawaii. Just not today.

Oh. One last thing. To everybody who has ever mocked (in jest) my lack of facial hair growing abilities, I win. Peeling this giant bandaid over this cut won't be nearly as bad as it would be if I had a full chin of facial hair the next day. And good luck shaving…I cringe just thinking about that.



  1. Wow! That is crazy. Kind of funny, but crazy. Feeling any better? Nice pictures, by the way. Looks brutal.
    If it makes you feel any better, I have a huge black eye from soccer. Guys' injuries=badass. Girls' injuries="is everything okay at home?"
    The race this weekend should be, um, interesting.


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