You ever hear people say “That stuff only happens to me”? I’m actually that person. I remember someone came up to me after one of my comedy shows once and accused me of making my stories up. I wish I could say that I had that creative of an imagination. I don’t. I really believe that God has a sense of humor and finds its amusing to put me in awkward situations.
This is a true story. It happened this past Friday at 2:10 pm.
When I was 16, I dated a guy who drove a 1989 Ford Fiesta. One day, we packed six of us into this hot little number and went out on the town. I wasn’t wearing a seatbelt- He swerved- hit the car in front of us and my head went through the windshield. Needless to say, since that day, I always wear a seatbelt. Anyway, a day in the hospital, a few stitches and I was fine. But that started my lifelong fear of car accidents. I have one of those repeat dreams of crashing. Once I had Hayden, those fears heightened because now I could fear being in a car accident with my child in the car.
Well, it happened. I’m thankful that God made is humorous…
While I was stopped at a red light (directly diagonal from my parent’s restaurant, Via Sforza), I was rear-ended. It was a very good smack. I let go of the brake and I think that helped ease the hit. Once it dawned on me that I was just hit, I frantically turned around to check on Hayden. She was still sound asleep in her car seat. I breathed a sigh of relief and got out of the car to check the damage.
Standing in front of me was a relatively normal looking guy. He apologized and I told him that I had my child in the car. He shook his head like he understood. I checked to see if there was any damage to my Jeep and thankfully, there wasn’t any. He had some dents, some scratches- but nothing on my truck. (Plug for Jeep- I will probably never drive another brand again- Jeeps rule). As I pondered whether I should call the cops or have Hayden checked out because maybe she had hurt her neck, he became a little irritated. I told him I had to call my father (who I could actually see across the intersection at the restaurant) or my husband to make sure I was doing the right thing. (Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about women’s lib, but let’s be honest, I barely know how to pump my own gas- This was a call that one of the men in my life had to make)-
He looked at me and said “I have caged raccoons and squirrels in the bed of the truck. I’m concerned about their safety if we stay in the sun”.
There was an awkward moment of silence while I digested this statement. Of course there was the fact that it was a cool 70 degree day… or possibly that he had hit me, not the opposite… or simply that HE HAD CAGED ANIMALS IN HIS TRUCK.
I looked at him and reminded him that I HAD A CHILD IN THE CAR THAT HE HAD JUST HIT.
I called my Dad and he quickly ran over. While he was running over the Raccoon Whisperer pleaded to me “Please don’t call the cops, they’ll take away my animal trapping license”… Dude, what?
I peeked in the back of his pick up and sure enough… trapped animals. While my father inspected my truck, he explained to me that the cages had slid forward which made him think he had been hit, so in turn he hit me. This obviously made no sense. I asked him what he does with the animals. He didn’t answer.
My father gave Raccoon Whisperer a stern look and told him to get the hell out of there before the cops showed up. That’s all he needed to hear. He, and those poor trapped animals, were gone.
Hayden slept through the whole thing. I wonder if this is one of those things I'm supposed to write down in her baby book. Who am I kidding? I have no idea where that book is and I certainly have never written anything in it since the day she was born.
He had trapped rodents in his car and was more concerned about their well being rather than my sleeping three year old. Again, just another day in my life.
Wear your seatbelt.