I love getting wounded, especially when it’s mild or accidental. Getting hurt makes me feel really cool, kinda like the bowl cut man from No Country For Old Man*.
I fell off my bike today. I wasn’t paying enough attention to where I was riding and then when the wheel went off the path I found myself horizontal on the ground. I was scraped up and winded yet my head was the same, continuing to think the same things I was thinking before I turned upside down. As my grandfather says, the body is merely a vessel for cool ideas.
After the crash a group of cyclists slowed to a halt and stood around me in concern, and noticing their attention I decided to ham it up, acting like I’d been shot in the gut by a scary guy’s bullet. Ignoring their questions I picked myself up and limped away into the wetlands, making them think I was walking off to live my last final hours in peace by the river. In reality I was going there to wash the blood off my knee and reattach my bike chain.
I used to always have cuts up and down my arms from various ailments. Sometimes I’d apply plastic strips or bandages, but those are expensive, so usually I’d just wear long sleeve shirts. Getting hurt in summer sucks, because it’s too unreasonable to wear anything that doesn’t reveal your wounds. But after a while the scars pale and again become the colour of your skin, noticed only by those who trace fingers upon you for the first or second time, stopping at indents to ask, ‘what’s this?’
Take their hand and reply, nothing.
Words by Rainy Colbert. Art by Marney Anderson.
This article first appeared in print volume 88 Edition 2 STOP.
** You know the bit at the end where he crashes his car real bad and then hobbles away, literally impressing the shirts off a bunch of kids? He buys one of the kids shirts with an Unhonest Abe (what the Americans call stolen money) and uses the shirt to tie his arm to his neck like you learn in cub-scouts. I assume he used a Reef Knot because it goes flat against the neck and is easy to tie and undo. I will be going into knot-making in a later issue.