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Willow’s big bike race.

As some of you may have realised by now, I don’t blog on Sundays. This is not due to any religious belief, but rather, it’s because it seems that few people blog on weekends, so why should I wast my time writing a post. Sunday for me is a time of reflection, I don’t mean that I think about things, I mean I get a mirror and put it in on the couch next to me in the living room while I watch TV so I don’t feel like I’m all alone.

So, as I was thinking about what to write for my next post, the ideas were conspicuous by their absence. I pondered and I ruminated but I got nothing, nada, zip, zilch and other such non English words that mean diddly. The harder I thought the more it became apparent that I was thoughtless (in fact I even got an award for it!). It was like I’d hit a brick wall. And then, like a ton of bricks, two thoughts hit me simultaneously, well not exactly simultaneously, more like at the same time.

It was at this point that a though came unbidden into my consciousness "Hey, I actually have hit a brick wall! Why don’t I just write about that?" (it was a rhetorical question) So here’s the story of when I hit a brick wall…

Being not only the youngest in the family, but also just about the youngest in the street, everyone was riding their bikes before me. This was back in the days before training wheels, back when you believed your brother when he said "Don’t worry, I’ll hold onto the seat until you get the feel of it" (just one of a long list of reasons why I haven’t had anything to do with that prick for over 35 years). Finally after a few painful mishaps, centripetal force eventually prevailed and I managed to stay upright most of the time.

All that was left now was to prove to all those kids that had been bagging me for not being able to ride just who was the top dog in the bicycle street racing scene. So it was that just a few short days after being able to stay perpendicular for more that 30 seconds, I entered my first race. Our street wasn’t all that long (I though it was, but I went back a few years ago and saw just how small it really is), but it did have a fairly good slope. We would all line up at the high end and race downhill towards the T intersection at the other end.

Everyone seemed to get off to a better start than me, but that just made me more determined to win, so I put my head down and peddled like crazy. Eventually I caught up to them, and even began to pass them. I couldn’t believe it! All these kids had been riding for months and here I was passing them like they were standing still. As it happens that’s exactly what I was doing. They had all stopped a few yards from the end of the street, but I was still accelerating. I went straight across the the road at the end of our street and slammed into a 3ft brick fence.

The bike stayed on the footpath, but I ended up being catapulted over the fence, hitting the ground and bouncing for about 15ft or so until I was stopped by the front verandah of the house to which I was making an flying visit (pun intended). The owners came out to see if I was OK (I wasn’t, but I wasn’t seriously injured either) and I remember my mother running down the street screaming (she always was a bit of a drama queen).

But as with just about all of my accidents, I suffered only bruising. But it was fun!

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41 Responses

  1. Wow, that sounds cool! Were they impressed?

    You know I can relate, having 3 boys. I see what it’s like being the youngest and trying to keep up.

    Didn’t your poor mother mellow out over the years? When I hear screaming, or see people flying, I usually just sigh and go back to what I was doing. But I remember being near hysteria the first time my oldest had a minor head bump.

    How many lives are you up to now? I’ve lost count.

  2. P.S. No Fun Monday this week?

  3. ALMOST FIRST!!!!11!

    When I was seven I ran into a parked Buick, knocked myself out, and woke up about three feet from my bike. That would have been 1984 so I know I didn’t have a helmet on.

    Obviously our shared bike ability is what turned us into bloggers.

  4. That explains a lot. Where was the bruising?

  5. Don’t you wish that video cameras etc were more prevalent in those days??? It would’ve made spectacular footage.

  6. Melissa in NZ – And possibly even won some money on Funniest Home Videos!

  7. HA HA HA HA HA, LMAO. I KNEW you had bounced hard at some point in your life.

    Man, a video clip of this woulda been fun.

  8. Oh – I meant to add:

    Poor baby.

    (I’m not all steely ice bitch you know)

  9. What’s the saying ‘no sense no feeling’ !!

  10. Ah, so that’s why you are so warped. but, that’s why I love your blog.

  11. Nine lives, eh?

  12. so did the kids treat you with begrudging respect after that? stand around shuffling their feet and spitting off to the side and saying out of the corners of their mouths, “aw, yer not so bad, kid”?

    my brother once ran into the corner of the brick church across from our house. he was trying to catch a football. WHAM.

  13. As a first time mom to a very accident prone toddler, you have given me nightmares!!!!

    (but glad to hear you weren’t seriously injured.)

  14. But, did you win the race? I remember those days of big bikes with metal parts and no training wheels, helments, or knee pads. Still have the scars too.

    Kids today won’t have as many battle wounds to talk about when they’re seniors.

  15. My brother was always crashing into something as a kid. I think it explains alot about him. Explains a lot about you, too. *grin* You do seem to have some spectacular catastrophes happen to you. Falling off a roof, flinging yourself over a brick wall…

  16. My youngest boy of three sounds very much like you and also seems to be indestructible. I’ve lost count of how many immovable objects he’s gone full tilt into and walked away.

    It explains a lot about him, now that I think about it.

  17. I’d be with mom and being a bit of a drama queen running down the street to see if you were ok. No helmets back then I imagine….and apparently no common sense either :o) What you boys put us mother’s through!

  18. I don’t think you should ask yourself rhetorical questions. It kind of defeats the purpose of the mirror for companionship. Answer yourself, man.

    My daughter got a new bike for her birthday and was riding in front of our house and decided to close her eyes to “feel the breeze”. She ran into our brick mailbox. I laughed and asked her to do it again. Does that make me a bad mom?

  19. Oh Willowtree, you always make me smile even in a post about how you were injured. I am sorry “but it was fun.” Joy does have a point, “what you boys put us mothers through.” On the other hand, I understand girls are not that easy either.

  20. Too funny, but ouch. You are lucky your head didn’t connect with the brick wall!

    I did the same thing on a hill once. Well, actually, forgot that I had brakes and crashed into a garbage can. (and yes, my mom was screaming behind me too!)

  21. Commenting about your new one-liner at the top about someone else’s dog. . .jeez, tell me about it. I’m sitting our friend’s dachshund this weekend and she is running all over us!!!

  22. ouch ouch ouch!

  23. Sounds very sore…

    I’m suffering with a few bruises today, not from the tennis, I’m blaming trying to dance in high heels but some may think it’s all the alcohol I drank! I was the one who was always injured as a child and it seems to be following me into adulthood!

  24. well, you can be considered the father of extreme sports, or you could have been a millionaire if someone captured it on tape and sent it to ‘funniest videos’. at least you didn’t smack your head.. you’re lucky. well i’m off to bike some trails.

  25. This reminds me of flying down Henry Street into the side of a parked car when the brakes on my 10-speed failed. Lots of painful road rash and bruises, but thankfully no broken bones.

    Aren’t drama queen moms fun? Mine is still very over-reactive.

  26. Great story. I can almost see it happening. I like the way you tell stories.

  27. Oh Oh…Bike accident stories scare me! I still cringe thinking about kids on bikes doing stunts or trying to keep up with the cool kids. Marnie…12 years old…face plant on steep gravel road. She went over the handle bars of her bike. Where was I…with her dad on vacation and grandma was sitting the kids. She hid up a tree because they wanted to take her for stiches in her chin. They talked her down only when they agreed….no stiches. Thus the zig zag scar on her chin. Her sister has a matching one from a similar accident. Ouch Willowtree.

  28. See! Karmyn and Marnie obviously blog because of bike accidents too. I’m so on to something.

  29. Thank you for the clock and Good Morning!

  30. Muahahahaha!(in my best evil laugh possible) That explains alot!

  31. To everyone who seems to think that this accident is the cause for my scrambled thought patterns, nope, that would be the drugs.

    And yes, in my mind I did win the race. And as another postscript, it would be nice to think that I did gain some respect, but they were too busy laughing at me.

  32. They were laughing WITH you, not AT you 😉

  33. Were the drugs:
    a) before the bike wreck ?
    b) during the bike wreck ?
    c) after the bike wreck ?
    d) all of the above ?

  34. Video?
    it was 16 mm back then, wasn’t it WT?

  35. ps. I’ve had to go pick up the hubby after a few crashes. And he’s a big boy now.

  36. It’s a wonder any of us survive childhood and all the tests. Good story.

  37. Very interesting view Peter! Definitely a family funny!

    I slipped and stuck my toes in the spokes ( well shoes were optional ) sliced my toe to the bone. Another accident left a broken kneecap… we were a rough group.

    I rode 15 miles on my bike Sunday..if I were young it would have been nothing, right? Now I feel like a Mac truck ran over me…lol.. fortunately today is only 8 !

    Enjoyed seeing your critters! 🙂

  38. OUCH! I’m sure I would have been a drama queen too but with three boys my drama quickly wore out.

  39. you’ve got more lives than a cat…

  40. been there done that got the t-shirt it sucked

    i think your bros and my sis would have got along together well

  41. WT – love the post! Made me smile and I am at work, so everyone looking in my office has to wonder what I am up to. HA!

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