Thursday, July 24, 2008

Still Alive: 6/21/2008 (original post date 6/22 2:31am)

It's getting closer to 11:00pm. I stop at a red light, westbound on River and Swan, thinking that it'll be too late to pick up any SQL or scripting books at Borders (I have a promotion interview on Tuesday), but I may still have enough time to see if Best Buy closes at 11 so I can grab that Wacom Graphire4 drawing tablet, or at least to see if I can pick up some apple juice at Albertson's. I notice that the light is one of those awful new ones that prevent you from seeing the color on the cross-street traffic lights if you're at the through-street position. I look down momentarily to see what time it is. I glance back up and the light is green! I wonder, how long has the light been green?! I hesitate, looking over my shoulder at the people in the car behind me waiting ever-so patiently. I shrug; the light must have just turned green. I realize I'm just edgy and that it'll be best if I just drive home. I accelerate into the intersection.

Halfway through, I reach 15mph. I see something out of the corner of my left eye - and two distinct thoughts coalesce upon my head instantaneously: Oh god, is that a truck? and Damn, this is going to hurt. In the following split second, a Toyota RAV4 t-bones my driver's side door, and hits me (ME!) at 40mph.

The traffic signal mocks me with its green glow.

I don't hear the impact, so much as I feel it. my car suddenly turns 90 degrees to the left. Shattered glass knocks into my head and leaps into the comfort of my lap. My head shakes and my knees rattle against each other like maracas.

Literally a second later, I am sharing half of my seat with the door. My broken window is aligned right next to that of the woman in the RAV4. She and her passenger both ask if I'm okay.

I say, "Aaaaaaaah! Damn! Yeah, I think ... I'm alive. That's a start, right? Are you okay? How are you?"
She says, "Yeah," nodding her head.
"We're all alive. And that's what matters." I hunch over my right side, holding the back of my head. I blink several times, and look around to make sure all of my body parts are with me and still intact. My knees pulsate. I stare up at her. "What were you thinking?!"
She replies, "I have a problem with my eye!"
I know that's just the shock speaking, but in my head, I'm thinking, yeah, I'd definitely call that a problem.
I can't help but feel sorry for her. She is very concerned with making sure everyone was okay. Her right shoulder seems to bother her, but she shakes it off. Her friend is just as polite.

My Saturn is now a "compact". I tell the woman it's vital that she turns her car off immediately. MY air bag has not yet deployed, and I realize I'd better get the hell out of the car before that thing punches me in the face. I unbuckle my seatbelt and slide over to the passenger-side door. Once out of the car, I nearly fall over, dizzy and excited. My head hurts, but it's not throbbing. my knees have bruises, but I feel like I can run a marathon if necessary. I walk around, and I get overwhelmed with what's going on around me. People ask if everything is all right, and I nod & echo their questions back at them. I look at the damage to both cars. Mine looks ... interesting. I realize that I'm lucky to be alive and uninjured.

The police arrive almost instantly. I believe the officer first on the scene was Officer Farmer. (I think that's his name ...) If he had been any sooner, he would've been a great witness. In the meantime, I'm still holding my head, conjuring up all those horror stories that my step-father has shared about his time as a fire-fighter. (example: Once-upon-a-real incident about 20 years ago, a man was involved in a car accident, and looked just fine. The medics arrived and asked the guy if he was all right, and he nodded, but just walked around as if in shock. The medics rushed on to check everyone else out. 3 minutes later, right in the middle of the commotion, the man everyone wrote off as lucky and unharmed drops dead from internal bleeding.)

I'm grateful to be alive, and despite shattered glass raining over me, and my driver's side door knocking into me as if to take the wheel, I don't even require hospitalization. I just hope it stays that way. I'm going to seek physical therapy, because I can't imagine that this is good for my scoliosis.

I called my family and roommates to let them know what's going on.
USAA was painfully absent from the whole insurance claim process because I was calling "off-hours" :-p can you believe that? That's the first time I've been unable to reach an insurance company during inconvenient hours of the week. All the messages tell me is that I must file my claim online. So now I've just finally done that. I've got car rental service, which I'll at least have by the end of Monday.

In other news, I registered my new domain. I'm looking for one more domain name now, since this one is a bit silly. What sucks is that between now and last year, someone registered one of the two domain names I was planning on registering. And the registration expires in just one month. the 23rd of July. I just have to spring into action on that day. So I'll work on the site and get it up to speed, and in the meantime hope that this other guy (who hasn't done anything with his site yet) doesn't renew.

I just need to figure out a good email domain name. something with class, so that I can be professional about creating

Hey, my head stopped hurting!