June 26th, 2011

Falling off your bike hurts. I mean it really, really hurts.

On June 5th I hit some sand and gravel on East Branch Road just off Rt.524. The road was riddled with potholes, my speed was probably a little to fast for the conditions, and I made some poor decisions. As we were coming around a turn I went to avoid a pothole. Since the road was fairly narrow and I couldn’t see oncoming traffic around the turn, I decided it would be safer to move towards the edge of the road than the middle. It was a simple choice really. I’ve been told that the impact of a moving vehicle is hard to forget and I just wasn’t in the mood to find out.

As a leaned the bike to straighten my path my front wheel started sliding on some sand. I tried to recover and my front wheel suddenly turned sideways. The handlebars were ripped out of my grip and I was catapulted up and over. The initial launching and the brief flight were rather exhilarating, but the landing absolutely sucked! Fortunately my shoulder softened the fall, acting somewhat like the crumple-zone does on a car.  Dazed and confused I was helped to my feet.

Damn that hurt!  

Long story short, I had my wife pick me up and take me to the hospital.  We did make a slight detour and stopped by the house so I could remove my favorite jersey before the ER cut it off.  This was, in fact, one of the worst decisions I have ever made.  Removing that jersey was slightly less painful than getting kicked in the nuts repeatedly by a Pro soccer team.  As I turned past the mirror I saw the damage I had done – where the hell did my right shoulder go!  There was no shape to it, nothing to define it as a shoulder.  I had the sudden urge to vomit!

The ER is never a fun place to visit, and even less fun when you’re the reason for being their.  After finding a big not on my head (they didn’t call it a knot, but I have trouble spelling words with more than twelve syllables), and a collarbone that appeared to be in five pieces, they sent me home.


I saw the Ortho doc two days later and was told that I would need surgery, but he couldn’t fit me in for two weeks.  Thanks Doc!  

Two weeks later, after a two hour surgery, I woke up with some spare parts installed.


Lucky me!  The more I thought about it the more I realized that I got off easy.  It could have been much, much worse.  Some day I’ll be back in one piece and riding once again.  For now, I keeping looking at my bike like it’s possessed.  I can’t see the evil that lurks within, but I can damn sure feel it!  There’s always next season.


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