Thursday, January 17, 2008

Why are you such a pedant?

Cast your mind back to the spring of 1986, if you were alive.

My mind, at that time, was that of a fourteen year old schoolboy. Full of football and friends. Panini and puberty. Every day I would make my way down to the precinct in the morning to catch the coach to school. A ten mile trip full of laughter and punches, homework and wedgies. It took about three minutes for me to get from my house to the precinct on foot. A walk I had made hundreds of times before without event.

But on Wednesday 14th May I never made it to the coach. Instead I was knocked down by a transit van on a zebra crossing. The same zebra crossing I had used every school day prior to this event, and would every day after.

I was unconscious for two days in Weston General Hospital and was considered a potential patient for Frenchay Hospital before I came round. I spent a week in that hospital. Mainly hallucinating. Seeing babooshka bears running up and down the geriatric ward that I had been placed in due to the shortage of beds in the children's ward. My memories of my stay in hospital are fairly sketchy. I remember being presented with two football trophies that I would have collected on the evening of the date of the accident. I remember the terrible smell of incontinence. I remember requesting I Heard It Through The Grapevine every day on hospital radio and listening for it to be played.

I didn't used to be like I am now. I used to be the original happy-go-lucky kid. Loadsamates. Loadsafun. But immediately after the accident those friends who, I now realise, had been on the periphery soon faded away. Leaving me only with my truest friends. I was antagonistic to the point of insanity, would split hairs that had already been split. I never knew why. I couldn't help it.

I don't remember the accident at all, nor most of the year after it happened. Something in my brain prevents me from doing that. Something in there is telling me that it doesn't want to remember the accident. My brain is lying to me. Physically I was cut and bruised and subsequently scarred. Mentally, who knows? Before the accident I can't remember ever writing a word. Not a story or a poem or a limerick or a novel or a play or a sketch or a skit. Nothing. It's like the accident unlocked a creative part of me that had been previously hidden. A gift perhaps? Or a curse? Because at the expense of this "talent" came a criminal sense of pedantry.

1 comment:

Hot n Drunk said...
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