For the last couple of days I have been grappling with an important philosophical question: can a bicycle accident be labelled “falling off one’s bike” if one is not technically on the bike when the incident occurs?
While humanity and general conversation skills would obviously benefit from my wisdom and clarity regarding the matter, it is very hard to focus and examine the nuances of the question when my knees are so bruised and scraped that I have to pour all my energy in to self-pity.
Rereading that last sentence also leads me to pose another question: how did I ever survive childhood?
Anyway, the aforementioned incident occurred when I was on my way to the pub to watch a football match (soccer to all the Australians). Yes, that’s right family and long-time friends, I, Princess B, went to a pub for a sports game and I even drank beer. Calm down, gremlins have not spirited the actual B away and put a changeling in her place. There was a huge pile of music for me to learn at home, and you know I’ll do anything for procrastination.
So to continue the story, I was outside my building, poised to begin the leisurely cycle from home to pub when I saw a scooter scooting furiously down the road I was about to cross. I realised he was going far too fast for me to be able to make it across the intersection, so I hopped off my bike to wait for him to pass.
Time slowed down, and I just knew I was going to do something stupid.
As I stood straddling my bike, I realised that it was on a really awkward angle and about to tip over. For some reason, using my hold on the handlebars to correct its position did not occur to me. I decided to let my bike fall, and swung one leg over to be left standing on the side.
I picked the wrong side.
My bike fell, knocking in to me in the process. I staggered to the side a little, and thought that I had come out of the situation perfectly ok, until I realised the ground was rapidly rising to meet my face. Logic came swiftly bounding to my side, pointing out that I should break my fall. I concurred, but using my knees to do so instead of my hands was an interesting choice. What can I say, I’m a soprano.
I reacted a little better to this accident than to the first, in that I laughed, picked up the bike by myself, and happily reassured the crowd of amused and somewhat perplexed Dutch men that everything was fine. I was also fine throughout the soccer match (that I didn’t actually pay any attention to) because I had nachos and discussions of holidays in France to distract me.
It wasn’t until I had to ride my bike home and walk up the stairs that I noticed just how awkward it was to bend my knees. I took off my tights to examine the purple and red mess that is now my left knee, and immediately started thinking whether I had enough opaque tights to hide it until it had healed.
Yep, definitely still a soprano.
I’m not sure whether I can in all truth claim that I fell off my bike. More accurately I fell off earth for a split second, and reconnected in an unfortunate manner. But as long as I hide my knees and manage to walk without a limp, maybe I’ll never have to tell the story to anyone.
Let’s keep this between you and me, internet.