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The Eclectic Pen - Wrong Turn

By: Scott W. (Rev)   + 36 more  
Date Submitted: 1/2/2008
Genre: Literature & Fiction » Short Stories & Anthologies
Words: 999

  I awaken to a symphony of crashing and banging, the world spinning around me as shattered glass scatters among the sounds of clanging metal, and for a split second I’m convinced that I have somehow wound up in an industrial clothes dryer with a case of Snapple empties. This bizarre fantasy is abandoned as quickly as I am jettisoned from the tumbling vehicle, propelled through the passenger window of the car as if I was I gigantic fleshy Nerf rocket, and the car was one of those Nerf rocket launchers that you trigger with your foot.

The cold night air rushes past me like a lazy Sunday afternoon, but this is only an illusion, as the cold night air is actually standing patiently still while I rush through it like a late night White Castle dinner, only slightly less greasy and without a side of soggy fries. I remain airborne just long enough to realize that I would much rather stay in the air than land on what is bound to be a rather hard and unyielding hunk of concrete, and then this thought is knocked out of me as I tumble onto the rather hard and unyielding concrete.

Various parts of my body begin to argue quite loudly amongst themselves over which is experiencing the most excruciating levels of pain. Countless patches of skin scream at random of lacerations and abrasions. A majority of the bones boast of possible splintering fractures. The internal organs begin a whispering campaign and threaten several unannounced ruptures, while the muscles organize themselves quite nicely and begin a rousing bruised and battered chant. The brain simply says “ouch” and does its best to keep everything together. The debate is heated and passionate, but is finally concluded when assembled parts collapse in a heap as a whole in the tall grass just to the left of the highway. My right elbow claims victory. None oppose.

Silence washes over me like twenty-seven gallons of French Onion Dip. I tread water in this rather palpable nothingness and calmly ponder the possibility that what I am experiencing is a Coma. If so, I wonder if it is only A Coma, or since it is mine, if it can rightfully be referred to as The Coma. It occurs to me how many Coma patients trapped in their own inky darkness have pondered this very same grammatical query, and I can’t help but giggle. This giggle elicits a response from my lungs, who suddenly feel that they were rather left out of the body’s previous pain caucus, and have now decided to voice their own concerns. This helps me to grasp the cold reality of the situation as I would the well-oiled handle of a leather bound backgammon set. I am not in The Coma, nor am I even in A Coma. I am merely in agony, and must have blacked out.

I open my eyes, but the darkness doesn’t swim away like a frightened school of speckled mackerel as it should. This, it turns out, is because my eyes have not actually opened. It seems that my brain has decided, uncharacteristically on its own and without my input, that it would be best for all involved if light were not actually shed on the current state of affairs. My eyelids wholeheartedly agreed, and simply pretend to open. The mutiny is short-lived, however, as my left eyelid lets curiosity get the better of it and decides to take a peek. The right eyelid has always been more of a follower, and folds under the pressure.

Squinting from the stinging sensation of blood dripping rather rudely into my eyes, I gaze down the road to what used to be a fully functioning automobile, but which now looks like a cheap toy car that lost a fight with a Play-Dough Fun Factory. My vision gleefully extends through the shattered remains of the front windshield, and I can just make out the twenty-seven pound frozen turkey still belted securely to the passenger seat of the newly inverted and somewhat pulverized vehicle. If luck is with me tonight, the paramedics will arrive before it thaws. Disaster might still be averted.

I try to lift my head, but nothing happens. Another attempt, buttressed by solid planks of extreme concentration, yields a similar lack of results. It seems that my brain, still angry over the failed eyelid coup, is now doing its best to ignore me. There is no doubt that at this point attempting to reason with it will be a waste of time. So, trickery must be employed. I sneak up on it by thinking of a wading pool filled with circus peanuts, and I feel my left wrist twitch. Encouraged, I rush up on it with a mental image of an angry monkey throwing stale bagels at a school bus as it rides by on a rusty green tricycle, and somehow manage to kick myself in the head. Learning from my mistake, I faint left with an internal monologue debating whether God’s barber is open on Sunday, and then quickly jab from the right with a rough idea for a microwave that is powered by self-doubt and melted ice-cream. Confused and tired, my brain gives up and does what it is told.

The world spins loosely around me like a slightly inebriated mime, and it takes a moment for me to focus beyond my comically twisted legs. My vision dances past the toes of my mismatched sneakers, runs headlong into a slender metal sign post, and takes its time shimmying up the pole to the large green sign bolted to the top. My eyes and brain playfully take turns guessing at what the sign might say before eventually giving up and joining forces to translate the letters for me. Regret and despair rest heavily on my shoulders like a raw meat poncho as the words gradually convey the meaning they were originally meant to.

“Denver – 7 Miles”

I knew it. I should have made that left back in Stanford.

The Eclectic Pen » All Stories by Scott W. (Rev)

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Comments 1 to 5 of 5
IONE L. (zaneygraylady) - 1/3/2008 5:30 PM ET
Clever. I like your sense of humor.
Kathleen J. (cozyreader) - 1/3/2008 6:01 PM ET
Wow. Your metaphors are amazing.
Marta J. (booksnob) - 1/11/2008 3:29 PM ET
Intense injury has never been portrayed with such humor!
Silvercat - - 1/15/2008 11:10 AM ET
Unbelievable imagery and humor! :)
Tonya F. (lovinseth) - 1/26/2008 1:26 PM ET
Really good.
Comments 1 to 5 of 5