Reflections on getting hit by an automobile

By dkl9, written 2023-219, revised 2023-219 (0 revisions)

Yesterday, I was hit by an automobile. Very gently, I might add, before people start worrying.

Riding a bicycle, most of the way thru a crosswalk with few safety features on a narrow, medium-speed road, the automobile hit me. Black, larger than a sedan, coming from my right — I think. It was too fast and panicked for any of that to be clear. Only more than halfway thru the hit itself did I realise "oh, I'm being hit by an automobile, guess I'll die." ("But you lived, right?" "No.") The collision knocked me and the thence-broken bicycle to the side of the road, leading me to touch grass somewhat harder than I'd like.

The weirdest part of it was how non-weird it was. People talk about auto collisions as if they happen by some mystically destructive mechanism outside our typical laws of physics. All that really happened was a quick, sustained push from a heavy, moving object. Which is kinda fun.

That's not to say you should go get hit. Getting hit is fun, but usually brutally injurious — sometimes lethal — so as to outweigh the fun. (My case was not brutal, the worst injury being a scraped left elbow. I told you it was gentle.) It's not worth it, but if it happens anyway, you might as well enjoy it.

Getting hit, enjoying it, and surviving, mostly fine, seems to have "cured" my fear of autos. I was never particularly scared of them; I refer to the sane, justified fear most people have. Later that day, I developed a meta-fear that, not fearing autos, I would let myself get hit. Perhaps that'll be functionally equivalent to the original fear and take its place.