Falling Down, Chapter 4

The other week I was walking my dogs at night on the sidewalk that runs around my townhouse complex.  They went off in the grass to sniff something so I started over after them.  All I know is I was standing horizontal one minute and the next I was face flat on the ground and I had no idea what hit me.  My dogs gave me a look like “Umm we’re not with her” because they were obviously embarrassed by the crazy woman walking them who is incapable of standing up straight.  So I was just lying on my side face planted on the ground thinking “what on earth just happened?”  I then proceeded to get up but realized I couldn’t- I was kind of disoriented, I came down pretty hard and fast, and I couldn’t figure out why I couldn’t stand up.  About then I realized it was because my foot and most of my leg and gone down into a pretty deep hole, almost up to my knee in the ground.  I literally had to pull my leg out of the hole to get up.

The worst part is is that it knocked the heel off one of my favorite pairs of boots and it’s setting me back $60 and putting them out of commission 3 weeks to fix them.  The next day I went to the scene of the crime to snap a pick for the property manager so they could fix the problem.

Just another day.

Falling Down, Chapter 3

In high school my sister Katherine and I went to see a movie at the local theater.  It was 2003 and I remember this because the movie Hulk was out and my sister and I thought it would be hilarious to get the Hulk sized popcorn…. aka the largest popcorn you can get, even larger than the largest popcorn you can normally get.  We didn’t see the Hulk, I don’t even remember what movie we did see because this story ends before we even got to our seats.

We got our Hulk sized popcorn and proceeded down the stairs to our movie.  I was carrying the popcorn and of course I tripped and fell all the way down the flight of stairs.  In the process of tripping the tub of popcorn flew in the air and the popcorn exploded out of it like an atomic bomb…. seriously it like went up 3 feet in the air and then out 4 feet before landing all over the floor, and on top of me, as I was now lying on the ground.  There were people everywhere and they all stopped and stared at me sprawled out on the floor.  I quickly got up, obviously very embarrassed.  I didn’t want all the complete strangers to think I tripped on my own accord so naturally I did what anyone would do, I slapped my sister and said “Katherine, OMG why did you push me?!?”   She looked so confused, she wasn’t sure whether to laugh, or to be mad because all the strangers were now giving her dirty looks for supposedly pushing me down the stairs.

I guess the saddest thing is we didn’t get to eat out of out Hulk sized popcorn tub.

 

Falling Down, Chapter 2

It’s taken about 3 years for me to gather up the courage to write this post because this is by far the most embarrassing and traumatizing moments of my life so far.  Worse than this.

It was the summer of 2007 and I had my first job out of college.  I was the campaign manager for a prominent state senator in Harrisonburg, Virginia where I had attended school (go dukes!).  In rural, southern Virginia parades are a big deal and if you are an elected official and especially if you are running for office it is very important that you have an entry in every parade.  So a huge part of my job was determining when all the parades in his district were that election season and making sure he was entered in the parade and he had a vehicle to decorate with his signs.

Once particular parade we used the senator’s SUV and attached a trailer to the back of it with a 4×8 campaign sign loaded on the trailer.  This was a big parade so there were a lot of fellow Republican legislators walking with us in the parade.  Several delegates and state senators from neighboring districts, the current congressman, attorney general and lieutenant governor will all there if I remember correctly.

We were milling around chatting waiting for the parade to start when my friend jokingly yells something like “go go go!” because the parade was starting and I was the one driving the car.  Joking back with him I hauled it to the car to get it started even though we were in no real hurry as it would take a few minutes for the parade to get going.  So as I was running really fast for no reason at all to get in the driver’s seat, I cut between the car and the trailer.  Attaching the trailer to the car was a metal bar, and as I jumped over the bar my foot caught on it, and then time just stopped.

I knew by how fast I was running and how hard my foot caught the bar that it was going to be bad.  For those few seconds it was as if time was suspended; I went forward in the air and then I was horizontal to the pavement for a moment.  As I was heaving forward I saw in slow motion all the parade-goers and elected officials mouths just open and all just stare at me.  And oh yeah, my coworker who I was in the early stages of a flirty/ not-quite-dating-cause-we’re-coworkers thing.  And then I just hit the pavement full-force and blacked out.  Next thing I knew I was being peeled off the pavement by my not boyfriend.  He got me on my feet and by then I really did need to get in the driver’s seat because it was just about time to go.

So suffice it to say I was mortified.  I am so glad I got to be alone for a few minutes in the car while everyone else walked in the parade.  While I was driving I covertly dialed my parent’s home phone; I didn’t want anyone to suspect I was remotely hurt physically or emotionally while in fact I was majorly bleeding and about to sob.  Both my dad and step-mom picked up the phone which I put on speaker and set on the seat of the car.  I’m not sure why but I didn’t want to tell them what just happened because I guess I thought people would see me talking and suspect I was upset.  So after they say hi all I could say over and over again in a loud whisper was “SOMETHING VERY BAD HAS JUST HAPPENED.   I CAN’T TALK ABOUT IT (holding back tears).  SOMETHING VERY BAD HAS JUST HAPPENED.   I CAN’T TALK ABOUT IT. ”  They were freaked out of course, thinking I had just been raped for was kidnapped or something.  The parade came to and end and I quickly got the blood cleaned up before getting out of the car.  One of the elected officials came up to me and said “Honey, are you sure you are ok?  You really hit the ground hard.  I told everyone ‘just don’t look, if you don’t look at her she’ll be fine.'”  I wanted so badly to just start crying but I casually responded “Oh yeah I’m great!”

And that is all.  For now.

 

 

Falling Down, Chapter 1

One summer during college I interned on the Hill for a member of Congress.  One of the main duties as a congressional intern is to give tours of the Capitol and the House Chambers.  I was often giving tours 3-4 times a day.  I had to buy grandma Aerosoles shoes due to the amount of walking I was doing, I’m sure I put in a few miles everyday.  I knew that tour like the back of my hand, all the secret tunnels underneath the Capitol… I can still spit out random facts about the Capitol on command… “Here is where there have been sightings of the mysterious ghost cat that roams the hallways of the Capitol…”

One fateful day I was leading my tour group out of the house chambers.  Our next step was to go down the stairs to get back to the tunnel which lead back to the Congressman’s office.  Now this is no ordinary stairwell… these stairs are original to the Capitol (read: a few hundred years old).  Think of the marble steps at a palace: grand, huge, overscale.  The marble was so worn from decades and decades of people walking on them that they were worn in the middle and sloped thus making them a little precarious to walk on.

There are thousands of people who come to visit the Capitol everyday, that particular day there were hundreds of 8th graders visiting… serioulsy hundreds lined up against the wall of the stairs all the way down and then down around the hall waiting to go up into the House Chamber.  I was trying to look like a super fine Congressional intern in front of the masses of pubescent 8th grade boys when suddenly, I’m not sure how but I lost my footing at the top of the steps. My feet came out from under me, my butt hit the top stair and I bumped and slid down every stair from the top of that grand staircase all the way to the bottom.  My cell phone and ID had flown out of my hands at the top of the stairs and my phone came apart to a few different pieces at the landing.  I landed on my butt, skirt flown up at the landing some 25 steps down in front of about 200 laughing 8th graders.  I could see them all pointing and laughing as what seemed to be me in slow motion bumping down step by step till I reached the bottom.  My tour group I was leading rushed to help me.  I pulled my skirt down, gathered my phone and finished off my tour acting as if I was totally fine.  They were very concerned and I really should have gone to lay down in the nurse’s office because I kind of blacked out a bit when I hit the bottom.

That night I had a black and blue bruise on my right hip/ rear the size of a cantoloupe… I took a picture of it at one point because I never ever bruise so this was quite strange for me to have a bruise, let along one so huge and dark.
I’m pretty sure it was this event that triggered my affinity to falling down, wiping out and losing my balance.  Ever since then gravity has not been good to me.