2003-11-17 - 12:45 p.m.

A wise man once said that the best childhood stories begin with, "We decided to build a ramp."

Mine, on the other hand, always seem to end with, "The paramedics had to straighten out my legs first."

I had a long-repressed childhood memory come back to the surface last night. I'm not sure why I repressed it - it's not all that traumatic, really, or at least no worse than many things I still remember vividly - but it explains, well, a lot.

When I was about 6 or 7, I tagged along with my brother and some of his friends to our neighborhood park. I didn't have any non-gimpy friends of my own at the time, and I really wanted these kids to like me. Anyway, in the center of this park there's a small hill--we called it The Grassy Knoll--which rises gradually on one side and drops off quite a bit more steeply on the other. As the other kids reached the top, they jumped up into the air and slid on their asses down the other side.

Yes, I tried to follow them.

The drop was only about six feet at the most, actually (this park was also my high school's prime dope-smoking locale, so I spent a lot of time there in subsequent years), but in my 6-year-old brain it was a lot higher. The tumble to the bottom seemed like a long time, too. The trip to the hospital with two broken femurs and the weeks spent in traction were longer still.

After that, I pretty much made a conscious choice to get my daredevil thrills vicariously from others.

Not right away, though. The paramedics had to straighten out my legs first.


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The Day Leslie Made Me Cool - 7:32 p.m. , 2006-12-14

Goodbye, Leslie - 12:02 a.m. , 2006-12-13

In Which Miguelito Discovers the Origins of His Evel Knievel Complex - 12:45 p.m. , 2003-11-17

You know that your generation is fucked when ... - 9:54 p.m. , 2002-10-15

Pedestrian rant - 11:46 p.m. , 2002-10-02