Monday, December 29, 2008

And you think YOUR Monday was bad?

Today didn't seem too unusual, nor too terribly awful. I woke up with a full and slightly hurting head from the Ohio Valley Plague, but it wasn't enough to keep me home. After two Day-Quil I was off to work.

The Spouse was nice enough to take me to lunch (since he's off this week) and I had returned to work afterwards with a full, happy belly.

It was a slow day, being the time between the December holidays, so I was just sitting in my chair, surfing the web (actually uploading photos to FaceBook) when from my left


I scream. Loud. My body tensed. I'm aware that something is on me, covering me. I open my eyes briefly to see a thick fog of dust. I blink and notice the cloud is dissipating and I stand up. Whatever is covering me slithers off. I look to my right and see male co-worker #1 walking away from me quickly. As I walk away from whatever just boomed I notice female co-worker on the floor in a combat crawl.

I'm still not aware of what has happened.

Male co-worker #2 comes up to me and asks, "Are you ok?" I do a quick mental inventory and note that I'm not in pain nor is my thinking muddled. I say yes and look to my left, where the boom came from.

There's a car in the window. Aimed right at me (or at least where I was sitting). The bumper is on the floor just inches from my desk. Two whole windows are gone, the metal frames badly bent. The corner column (including a shelf that held a lot of my stuff - candy dish, Chinese good fortune cat, clip art book, font books) is a disaster. The interior portion is gone. I mean GONE. The outside portion is missing about 1/3 of its bricks and cement. There're ducts and chunks of wall all over.

There are (summoning Carl Sagan) billions and billions of miniscule bits of glass everywhere. As far as 30 feet away.

My workstation is covered with shrapnel.

A couple of customer service folks come over to me to see if I'm ok. One of them says, "You better get to the bathroom. Your forehead is bleeding."

As they say this I'm aware of a warm, wet sensation on my left ankle. I look down and see multiple holes in my black hose one both feet and spot the blood on my left ankle.

"You might want to take that shirt off. You're covered in glass."

"Yeah, you'll want to take your hair down, too. You have glass in your hair."

I reach up and feel a bunch of small glass chunks on my carefully braided hair.

Fuck. What the hell just happened?

I shuffle off to the bathroom with one of the customer service gals. That's when I notice my shoes are full. Of glass. I have to dump them out on the floor before I can go anywhere.

She follows me into the bathroom and proceeds to groom me like a primate, picking off the larger, more visual chunks of glass from my head. I take off and discard my destroyed hose and take gander at my ankle. It looks like a pit bull chewed on it. Then I look in the mirror.

My forehead isn't that bad. I have about 4 or 5 very small cuts that are barely oozing blood. But I have a glittery hairstyle.

Someone had handed me an old workshirt to change into. My turtleneck and shawl are dusty with glass. My pants look awful. I roll up my pants legs to check for more wounds but don't see any more.

During this whole ordeal, I'm laughing. I'm shaken, hell, I'm freaked out, but I'm laughing. In a situaion like this, you haven't to make light of it somehow.

Once I get the old shirt on, I emerge from the bathroom to get see what the fuck just happened.

That's when I see my workstation.
Yeah, it's petty much covered with glass. But check this shit out. The iMac is still running!

But yeah, I was sitting right there. And you can see how close the car was.
See? There's the car. Now, like most people, I'm instantly picturing a drunk bastard, or some dingbat on a cellphone, or some moron strung out on drugs. But no, twas not the case. Male co-worker#2 ran out to check on the driver after checking on me. Apparently the poor bastard passed out behind the wheel. He claimed he remembers coughing real hard, and then he was in our building. Sounds like a stroke to me.

I sit down in a chair and someone brings me a paper towel for my bloody ankle. I'm dabbing my wound, cursing the whole time: "Fuck! Sonofabitch!"

You would cuss, too. Cars djust don't come flying thru your window every day. And it really starts to sink in how really fucking close this car was to mowing me down. If it had not been for the foot-and-a-half of concrete foundation around our building (which is 90% glass) I would be a lot flatter and not as pretty.

We were all walking around in a daze. People (even me) are pulling out their cell phones and taking pictures.

The police, fire and EMS were there in record time and they got that poor bastard strapped down to a gurney and hauled him outta there. They all interviewed me and my female co-worker (who whacked her bad knee on the way down to her combat crawl). I didn't need medical attention. Physically I was fine. My thinking was clear and I felt ok. I was pretty shaken, and I have a bloody ankle, but other than that I was all right.

I called the Spouse between interviews and told him the whole story. He must have said, "Holy Shit!!" a dozen times.

I get off the phone and now I wanna see the damage.
Hey, there's my workstation again, or what's left of it. See that pile of rubble on the floor? That's what hit me. There's a black chair left of center that has a black and white mass on it. That's my new hat and scarf (gift from Nicograph) and my coat, now buried under a mountain of glass.

My cell phone and iPod suvived. They found my keys, my tote bag and my purse. And one framed picture of the Spouse. I'm hoping the rest of my stuff is in there, somewhere.

I talked to a few more cops and EMTs, then filled out the workman's comp paperwork. After a comforting hug from several folks I packed up my glass-covered belonging to go home. Hell, might as well. It's not like I'm gonna get any work done today.

I have to call in tomorrow morning to see what the skinny is on me coming in. Our IT department is supposed to move our Macs to another area and set us up temporarily.

Every time I look at these photo, I get freaked out. I keep thinking how close that car was...


Anonymous said...

Holly you are so lucky.

That's some crazy, crazy stuff.
Glad you are okay!


Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you're okay, Holly!! I just told your mom that Jay's been coughing and passing out for a few weeks now. . .not while driving, though. (Just found out today that he has pneumonia.) So sorry you had to go through that. You are one lucky lady!! :D


Anonymous said...

Ok...Really, the best way to get over the trauma is to talk in detail about everything that happened. In GREAT detail. Soo...You took your shirt off, let your hair down, and were being gently groomed by a chick. Let's start at that point and look into this a little more deeply...

Stephen Parrish said...

There's gotta be something you can get from the car insurance company. Take a look at your ankle again; are you sure it isn't broken?

Desk whiplash?

Post traumatic stress disorder?

Tourette's syndrome?

judygraham said...

OH, wow. I'm glad you are okay. This isn't going to get out of your head right away, and that's okay. It's kind of like being in a car accident *tee hee*, the shock stays with you for a while.

Meanwhile, even if you think you are okay, you should be checked out medically. Jeez, I think I might have gotten whiplash just from flinching!

Meanwhile, thank your lucky stars.

Anonymous said...
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laughingwolf said...

hey holly... fancy meeting YOU here :P lol