August 23, 2004


This millennium, there have been two occasions in which I have come very close to being deaded (there were some last millennium as well, but you tend not to appreciate these things as a teenager).
The first was a car accident- I was taking a corner and a bus swung out wide and didn’t just drive into my van, but drove into the cab of my van and into me. I was covered with shattered glass, every part of my skin that was not clothed was bleeding, I staggered out of the remains of Big Red (my beautiful, dearly departed van), my head ringing, possibly moments from collapse due to spinal injury, and all I could think was…..thank God I have all my teeth! I actually stuck my bloody, glassy fingers into my mouth to feel that they were all still there. Sure, I’d just had a catastrophic accident, but I was just absolutely delighted that my teeth had remained where they belonged.
The second was while swimming, I got caught in some very heavy waves in some very rocky waters- one of them picked me up and I was rushed under the water at wave-speed through a morass of sharp rocks- if I’d smashed my head on one of them, it would have been adios muchachos. As it is, I only smashed one of my legs, tearing it open to the bone and leaving me stranded and bleeding on a big rock in the middle of gigantic waves for half an hour. And as I scrambled up on to the rock, in intense pain and shaking from the fear of what might have just happened…..again, my fingers went straight to my mouth to make sure I hadn’t lost any teeth. Immense rush of relief on learning they were all still there.
Don’t take this the wrong way, I’m not house-proud (Den-proud?). My teeth aren’t exactly fabulous- they’re below average, at best (they’re almost British). It’s not like I’m teeth-obsessed in other areas, like cleaning, or anything. But when it comes to almost-dying, I think that teeth-loss is a good indicator of how bad things are, y’know? Like, sure, maybe you lose a leg, but if you’ve still got your teeth, you’re probably going to be okay.
Anyway, that’s Fear #1, and the most visceral of my fears. More esoteric fears to follow.


4 thoughts on “Two-thirty

  1. Tee hee- I love that gag. I actually make purchases that add up to 2.30 just so i can say to the cashier: “Well you’d better go to the dentist, then!”

  2. Damn, that’s why they look at me funny… I never got that joke and always went for 4.37.. “Better go to the dentist, then!” Hahahaa… ermm… ahem..
    *gets coat*

  3. Of fears a host I could recite:
    Bambooed nails, betrayal, laughter,
    Failure, fear itself, an ugly fight;
    Oh god can you imagine? I flee
    The thought. Spiders, weakness,
    Trouble even troubles me;
    But light and love and power,
    Good spirit, wise mind, peace,
    Kind God, He causes all to flower.

    Gene Salay on August 24, 2004

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