This sordid tale needs a bit of backstory. Last night, I was hanging out in the living room after finishing my linear algebra homework, and I saw a commercial for Allstate insurance (which happens to be my insurance company; another strange coincidince, I just realized). The commercial showed a cinematic car crash, and then Allstate’s somber celebrity representative (who happens to play President Palmer on 24…not a coincidence, just one of life’s little oddities) said “Odds of being in a movie-style crash: one in a billion. Your odds of being in a crash: one in eight.” At that moment, I thought: “Yeah, right. Not me.”
I was wrong.
Coming out of linear algebra today (after another disastrous quiz), I became one in eight. I rear-ended some unfortunate girl’s car. Thank goodness, nobody was hurt, but I dented up her bumper and smashed the hell out of the front of my car, completely busting the radiator, both headlights, the grille, and the quarterpanels. It’s true what they say: it doesn’t feel real. It feels like a nightmare. You’re thinking “Ooooooohhh, no, that didn’t just happen. My hood isn’t really folded up. I’m dreaming.” Well, of course, I wasn’t. And from then to three or four hours later, when my tow truck finally showed up, everything is a blur.
But even an unfortunate, depressing, scary incident like this still manages to carry some of the oddity that accompanies me everywhere I go. To quote the tow truck driver: “Hey, I figured out what’s wrong: you’ve got a dent!” True story. Also a true story: When I hit her car, I managed to smash the tailpipe. Later on, I looked at the front bumper of my car, which is a fairly crappy plastic job, and saw a perfectly round section taken out of it, like a cookie cutter. Now clogging her bent tailpipe is the following: a circle of plastic bumper, a circle of styrofoam from behind the bumper, and a perfectly circular piece of my old “North Carolina Native” plate.
I do nothing normally.