The Windshield or the Bug PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Karel Nunnink   


Ramblings of a movement junky


The windshield or the bug.



Friday afternoon,warm on the verge of becoming hot but not yet.

I felt the breeze the moment I glided onto my driveway from the garage, the skates felt comfortable enough and I had an hour window before the rush of parents at Krey Elementary.

My street is on a mild downhill, and I played with balance and loading mimicking  the ski radius turns I have been doing a large part of my life.

The rhythm returned with the double pole plant and now early projection into the next turn were possible, so I skated onto Douglas Dr, a left turn and now a straightaway where I  shift to double polling using only upper body strength, I was on the left side of the street and traveling into traffic because of the ability to easier spot any oncoming threats.

This allows for better movement because the signaling from the eyes is much improved, now the present moment becomes easier to attain for longer, thus allowing the Brain to receive the signals of neurons firing information about angle of force load of force and balance of center.

It felt fluid and effortless, these moments are why I love to move and particularly lately glide... So much less effort and pounding, yet astonishing speed and maneuverability.

A stop sign ahead and I quickly scanned behind, right and left, nothing.. So onto Foothill with an easy right turn, often I skate up on the sidewalk but noticed the Fed Ex truck and driver ready to get out, so I chose to stay on the pavement.

Looking back at this event, a couple of things immediately become apparent as far as the predictive behavior of the brain and choosing the safest scenario possible.

I'm now still on the left side of the road on blacktop and make the choice of not going on the sidewalk risking colliding with the Fed Ex driver, besides there is no traffic in sight anyway.

Stride one two thrust and double pole, and again a little faster, picking up speed now as the distance to the truck narrows, then a flash of black and chrome as the Charger approaches my street ( Foot Hill), from a side street (Ventura drive), the squealing of protesting rubber exiting the turn warns of recklessness now accelerating toward me.

Where there was no danger and an easy choice but a moment ago now becomes a choice of life and possible serious injury... Knowing my chances of skating around the truck were slim I threw in a side check to try and get to the curb, a maneuver in skiing where you can throw the skis sideways at speed to either scrub speed or change direction, this works with skis, and ice skates, but not rollerblades.

And thus I was reminded thereof  by a sudden loss of traction and then the impact on my side hard but not brutal, a loud exclamation as the air was forced from my torso by the impact, sliding now on the pavement toward the Fed Ex truck and coming to a stop under the front bumper as the black Charger passes in a rush of air and roaring exhaust from the quickly climbing RPMs, speeding on trough a nearby stop sign.

For what seems like an eternity, there is no pain... as I'm  scrambling to my feet and stumble onto the sidewalk not quite believing what just happened.. Then the pain hits in waves of burning agony, breathe I tell myself as I'm squeezing my thigh right above the knee to reassure the skin the threat is gone and divert attention from the 6 inch patch of skin now gone and just the rawness of the flesh, peaking up at me.

All this happened while the Fed Ex driver diligently delivered the package and was getting back into the truck, seeming to never even notice or completely ignore what had just transpired.

I mumbled something like don't worry I'm ok when the engine barked alive, the clunk of the transmission engaging was less obvious however as he looked down at me and commented AWSOME, pointing to my skates.

Blood is oozing slowly down my leg but the pain is manageable, as I feel the tension creeping in as the protective mechanisms of the body now signal  pain and increased threat because of possible loss of mobility, I take a stride and glide...then another,  good I tell myself no joint or muscle inhibition and continue striding, quickly gaining back confidence as the throbbing in the left hip subsides to barely noticeable.

The rest of the session goes by without any more incidents, and I was able to shift from Skiing mode on the downhills, to Xcountry on the uphills, to Speed skating on the smooth cement flat parts, thus arriving safely back at my home.


This experience gave me more insights into the Dangers lurking on the streets in even some of the quietest neighborhoods, obviously from speeding drivers then to corporate policies avoiding engagement in situations where litigation could be brought against the Company. Meaning even though I had no intention of blaming the driver, or Fed Ex for that matter, just the possibility was enough to avoid getting involved.

Hey I could have been the bug here... Don't like bugs.


The thing I'm the most pissed about though is my inability to now go to the delta and sail, that would be the surest way toward contracting some sort of infection.

I can't play on the water until I'm healed... Better heal myself fast.



Live long and love strong.




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