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Old 10-17-2019, 11:16 PM
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I just saw a thing I wish I hadn't seen.


Thursday 10/17/2019
19:50

I just saw a guy on a skateboard get creamed by a vehicle. It was about 45 minutes ago, on Hayes Street just off Market. I was putting a batch of my mail art postcards in the mailbox nearest the Post Office; I'd counted 20 of them when I heard someone yell "Don't get hit, man! DON'T GET HIT!"

Then there was a soft *whump!* noise, when the guy got hit. By one of those things that's between a pickup truck and a small SUV, what I'd call a Bronco or a Blazer. He went flying and hit the asphalt.

I rushed over to check him out. He was young and white from what I could see of him; he just laid there crumpled in a pile. I saw his skateboard and maybe a little blood. I said "Hey, man--you OK?" even though he wasn't, that was plain to see. He didn't move or say anything.

So I did the only thing I could think of that'd be of any use at all. I hollered out, "HEY! This guy's hurt, bad!" trying to attract some attention.

Pretty quick, there was a youngish, affluent looking hetero white couple there. The man said "Call 911!" I said I didn't have a phone on me -- but he did, so he made the call. Another guy--heavy set and bearded, probably gay by the sound of him--came out of the dark. Said he was a paramedic, told the two kids to direct traffic away from the (still quiet, still not moving) skater.

There was the couple with the phone, the self-called EMT, and the driver of the vehicle slowly approaching. There wasn't jack shit I could do about anything, nothing but go back to the mailbox and deposit the rest of my postcards, then head back down to Market Street and start walking home fast-but real, *real* cautious (sorry, but I don't *ever* talk to Officialdom if I can possibly avoid it).

At least there was an ambulance arrived at the scene pretty fast. Thank who or whatever.

I got back to the hovel and sat down outside to smoke a cigarette and calm down a bit. Came home and started writing this little bulletin while it's fresh in my head. And it is. I just closed my eyes and saw that poor unlucky son of a bitch lying there on Hayes Street again.
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Old 10-17-2019, 11:22 PM
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I say the same thing every time I turn on the internet.
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Old 10-17-2019, 11:29 PM
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I'm sorry you had to witness that. I hope the guy who did the yelling was still around, he may have been the only visual witness other than the driver.

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I say the same thing every time I turn on the internet.
You know that thing about not being a jerk? You should try harder.
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Old 10-17-2019, 11:34 PM
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I'm sorry you had to witness that.
Thanks, man. I'm a bit more rattled by that than I thought I was at first.
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Old 10-18-2019, 12:04 AM
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Feeling a bit calmer yet?

Did you have that weird "everything slows down, but keeps happening super fast" thing going on? I was the ambulance caller a few years back when an older fella at the next table over had a heart attack right there in the restaraunt. Never found out if he survived or not, but my memory of it is still, unsettling a little, and ...surreal I guess, not a normal memory
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Old 10-18-2019, 12:31 AM
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My kid's a skateboarder in San Francisco (yes, he's young and white... and he hasn't texted back yet). They've lost a number of skaters to traffic accidents. Including Pablo Ramirez, who was a madman. I've seen him fly through intersections with cars just missing him... until a huge dump truck didn't miss.


Whew! Just got a text: "Doin' fine."
Glad he wasn't cute about it... He's been known to text "Bleeding in a gutter."
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Old 10-18-2019, 02:46 AM
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I once saw a pedestrian hit by a car on Toronto's Yonge Street, back in the early 2000s. The pedestrian was hit into the air and landed with an awful-sounding "whump." I don't know what happened eventually, but it couldn't have been good.

Seeing such a thing is a tragedy. I felt the way the OP did. I cannot erase the sight of that poor pedestrian flying through the air. Time heals, it is true, but some things you cannot unsee. Be well, OP.
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Old 10-18-2019, 03:02 AM
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I'm sorry that happened, it is especially jarring when you are just going about a normal day and all of a sudden, you are dealing with trauma. It's hard for you to settle down when you've gone from 0 to 100 in one second; it takes a while to not have this nervous feeling that you could go from 0 to 100 again at any minute. It goes away.

If you can, just chill out for a while and just feel however you feel.
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Old 10-18-2019, 05:17 AM
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Feeling a bit calmer yet?
It's several hours later, and yeah, thanks, I've settled down considerably. Still wondering about the poor mofo that got hit, though. And thinking how that could've been me, cutting across the street at the wrong moment and piece of sidewalk. My partner says it drives him nuts how careless I cross the street sometimes.

Quote:
Did you have that weird "everything slows down, but keeps happening super fast" thing going on?
Something similar to that. When I first went near the vic and saw that he seemed unconscious,, it felt like a half hour went by before the guy with the telephone came on the scene, even though I knew it was only like a fraction of a minute.

Last edited by El DeLuxo; 10-18-2019 at 05:18 AM.
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Old 10-18-2019, 05:54 AM
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Spoons: Be well, OP.
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madmonk:I'm sorry that happened, it is especially jarring when you are just going about a normal day and all of a sudden, you are dealing with trauma.
Thanks, you folks. I appreciate your thoughts.

I think that maybe what's really jarring me is something similar but worse happen that I saw happen several years ago in broad daylight, just a few blocks away on Market and 6th Street: a homeless looking guy got hit by an SFPD car whose driver was trying to Hollywood through the red light on Market Street, while the man was in the crosswalk. He had the fucking light too (which wouldn't have mattered anyhow, because pedestrians always have the legal right-of-way everywhere in California no matter what or when or where else. That time, I saw and heard the whole thing: the poor fucking hobo literally flew over the hood and windshield of the cop car, and landed with that same awful whump! sound it made when he was struck. I hurried off without stopping that time, too. And later when I told a friend of mine what had happened, he told me I really should've stayed and made a statement. It took me a long time to get over that, and I think some emotional backwash from that long gone by incident came up on me again tonight.

We really don't know the day or the hour, do we?
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Old 10-18-2019, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Gatopescado View Post
I say the same thing every time I turn on the internet.
At best this is a tone deaf response to an obviously upsetting event. Donít be a jerk. No warning issued.

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You know that thing about not being a jerk? You should try harder.
Donít junior mod. Please use the report function. No warning issued.
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Old 10-18-2019, 10:01 AM
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We really don't know the day or the hour, do we?
Fitting OP soundtrack: Just want to see.
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Old 10-18-2019, 10:21 AM
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I understand that it was stressful. Maybe 7 years ago I was almost close enough to touch a motorcyclist as he drove into a parked truck at 70 MPH. Very disturbing, but in my case, it faded overtime.

Some people seem to hang onto the most stressful thing they experience such that it adversely affects them - seemingly for the rest of their lives. I'm not sure why that is, but best wishes that that does not prove to be the case with you. I'm not saying to intentionally forget it. But if you find it is still adversely affecting at some time in the future, consider what you might be able to do/who you might be able to talk to, to reduce that effect.
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Old 10-18-2019, 11:00 AM
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What the hell does the sexual orientation of passersby on the street have to do with the tale of a car accident?
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Old 10-18-2019, 11:15 AM
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What the hell does the sexual orientation of passersby on the street have to do with the tale of a car accident?
Not sure, but I'm not sure what the fact that he was heavy-set and bearded has to do with anything either. I assume the OP was just sharing the details that he noticed at the time.
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Old 10-18-2019, 11:19 AM
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What the hell does the sexual orientation of passersby on the street have to do with the tale of a car accident?
And their race and income level. (That was what stood out to me, too.)
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Old 10-18-2019, 11:54 AM
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And their race and income level. (That was what stood out to me, too.)
Perhaps the poster is a writer and is accustomed to setting the scene (descriptive does not automatically equal judgement), perhaps the trauma of the event brought everything into sharp focus. Considering what they went through, I give them a pass on this.
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Old 10-18-2019, 12:10 PM
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Perhaps the poster is a writer and is accustomed to setting the scene (descriptive does not automatically equal judgement), perhaps the trauma of the event brought everything into sharp focus. Considering what they went through, I give them a pass on this.
That was my initial observation and conclusion as well.
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Old 10-18-2019, 01:58 PM
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I have seen way too much of this stuff myself. IME, You notice many things that you would not usually notice if you were not dealing with trauma. El DeLuxo gets a major pass from me.

The aftermath of this event can be life changing.

If you hangout with EMTs, ER personnel, or wrecker drivers, you will notice that almost all of them have a macabre sense of humor. This humor is, I believe, one of their ways of dealing with the trauma that they see on a daily basis.

I was a wrecker driver for a few years, I found that I did not like what the daily infusion of trauma into my life was doing to me. This humor was an indicator to me that I had to find a different career path.

El DeLuxo, I will also advise to just chill out for a while. Let yourself deal with this. I bottled this stuff up for years, I do not recommend that you bottle this up. Deal with the emotions as soon as you are able to.

IHTH, 48.
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Old 10-18-2019, 02:22 PM
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Perhaps the poster is a writer and is accustomed to setting the scene (descriptive does not automatically equal judgement), perhaps the trauma of the event brought everything into sharp focus. Considering what they went through, I give them a pass on this.
When you're dealing with a big stressor, your brain hangs on to the weirdest details. It's been almost seven years since a deputy and a state patrolman knocked on my front door to tell me that my husband had been in a bad wreck, and to take me to the trauma center, and the tiniest details still stand out. I put on a cloth jacket first, but decided to change because leather would spot clean easier. Wore my brother's hand-me-down jeans from high school, in case I had to trash them later, since they were ~ 30 years old. Grabbed cash for the coffee machine. $13. I don't know why my brain put that in my long term memory, but there it sits.

OP, be gentle with yourself for a bit. Your experience sounds awful. {{{Hugs}}}
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Old 10-18-2019, 02:22 PM
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Originally Posted by El DeLuxo View Post
There wasn't jack shit I could do about anything, nothing but go back to the mailbox and deposit the rest of my postcards, then head back down to Market Street and start walking home fast-but real, *real* cautious (sorry, but I don't *ever* talk to Officialdom if I can possibly avoid it). .
Seriously? You were a witness to the incident. There will probably be same sort of investigation. What you saw and heard was potentially important. You should have stayed to make a witness statement, or at least left your contact details. I condemn your actions completely. Please do the right thing, contact the police and offer yourself as a witness.
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Old 10-18-2019, 02:26 PM
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I think that maybe what's really jarring me is something similar but worse happen that I saw happen several years ago ... I hurried off without stopping that time, too. And later when I told a friend of mine what had happened, he told me I really should've stayed and made a statement.
Your friend was right.
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Old 10-18-2019, 02:41 PM
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I have seen way too much of this stuff myself. IME, You notice many things that you would not usually notice if you were not dealing with trauma. El DeLuxo gets a major pass from me.
This. OP posted just 45 minutes after a major traumatic event, probably still pumped up on unholy amounts of adrenaline. That merits cutting him quite a bit of slack for statements and thoughts that might seem troubling or odd in other situations.
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Old 10-18-2019, 03:57 PM
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During my Grandfather's funeral one of the motorcycle cops who was escorted the procession was run over by my Uncle who had blacked out at the wheel of his van, I guess from the stress of his father's death. We were in the cemetery at this point and the cop was standing stationary by his motorcycle, I heard a sickening scream, almost inhuman come from the cop a couple fractions of a second before he got hit, he flipped in the air like a rag doll several times.

I know the cop survived but his Pelvis in addition to a lot of other bones were shattered by the impact, my Uncle visited him often in the hospital and felt very bad. I wasn't traumatized by it but the image of it always stayed with me like a running movie.
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Old 10-19-2019, 09:47 AM
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I was talking to a roomful of people on a warm, spring day and was walking back and forth as I spoke. As I walked toward the window, which was open, I heard screaming from the street six floors below me. As I looked to see what was up, a woman jumped from the eighth floor of the building adjacent to mine.

I saw her entire trajectory as she passed me and hit the sidewalk. Had I known what I was going to witness, I would have avoided looking.
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Old 10-19-2019, 11:33 AM
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We really don't know the day or the hour, do we?
Matthew 25


Nope. Knowing that is a lot different from really understanding it. Our time is short. Thank you for reminding us.
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Old 10-19-2019, 03:01 PM
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One of my indelible memories was being on a fully loaded train going 80mph that hit someone sitting on the tracks.

Didn't get a direct look at the accident, but some of the gore (because, really, we ARE just bags of meat and water) splashed all the way back to the passenger car windows.

Yeah, you remember the weirdest details, like the little words "AMTRAK" woven into the carpeting on the floor of the aisle - I got a good look at it because when the driver threw the emergency brake on I went face-down onto it. The sound of luggage falling off the overhead racks onto the other passengers, and the sounds the passengers where making, too. The guy seated behind me slept through the whole thing because he was on pain meds for his broken collarbone, and he was wearing a pretty massive brace, too. I remember the train driver having to be sedated and carried off on a stretcher. I remember the lady sitting near me in a buff, camelhair blazer, white turtleneck and a gold necklace, long straight blond hair. I remember all sorts of little details. Some of them I think "WHY do I remember this bit?" But I guess under extreme stress the brain just files everything under "long term memory" just in case that situation arises again the future. Or something.
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Old 10-19-2019, 07:24 PM
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I understand that it was stressful. Maybe 7 years ago I was almost close enough to touch a motorcyclist as he drove into a parked truck at 70 MPH. Very disturbing, but in my case, it faded overtime.

Some people seem to hang onto the most stressful thing they experience such that it adversely affects them - seemingly for the rest of their lives. I'm not sure why that is, but best wishes that that does not prove to be the case with you. I'm not saying to intentionally forget it. But if you find it is still adversely affecting at some time in the future, consider what you might be able to do/who you might be able to talk to, to reduce that effect.
Studies about memory formation are fascinating, kids under 5 are about like people in old folks homes - you need difference in daily activities to set memories, bland day after day you don't tend to remember, you remember days when something different springs to mind.

I have one very clear memory from kindergarten - I was 5 at the time and while walking to school, a scant half block the other direction from the way I went a kid was hit by a bus and literally there was blood smeared on the street from the incident. For those of us not family school went on that day like normal, because I remember getting home for lunch and Mom asking me if anything happened at school.

I don't think it really affected me - none of us who were peripherally involved ever got any sort of counseling and they didn't have any sort of ceremony or mourning or people wandering around crying and it barely got more than a brief mention in the town paper at all.
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Old 10-20-2019, 10:06 AM
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As I looked to see what was up, a woman jumped from the eighth floor of the building adjacent to mine.

.
When I was 12 or so a father threw four or so of his young kids out of the upper floors of a hotel in Salt Lake City. Maybe the 10.

A friend of mind and his dad happened to be there and see it.
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Old 10-21-2019, 10:39 AM
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One of my indelible memories was being on a fully loaded train going 80mph that hit someone sitting on the tracks.

Didn't get a direct look at the accident, but some of the gore (because, really, we ARE just bags of meat and water) splashed all the way back to the passenger car windows.

Yeah, you remember the weirdest details, like the little words "AMTRAK" woven into the carpeting on the floor of the aisle - I got a good look at it because when the driver threw the emergency brake on I went face-down onto it. The sound of luggage falling off the overhead racks onto the other passengers, and the sounds the passengers where making, too. The guy seated behind me slept through the whole thing because he was on pain meds for his broken collarbone, and he was wearing a pretty massive brace, too. I remember the train driver having to be sedated and carried off on a stretcher. I remember the lady sitting near me in a buff, camelhair blazer, white turtleneck and a gold necklace, long straight blond hair. I remember all sorts of little details. Some of them I think "WHY do I remember this bit?" But I guess under extreme stress the brain just files everything under "long term memory" just in case that situation arises again the future. Or something.
I worked in Penn station central control for a few years and saw quite a few people (on video) either jump in front of trains purposely and a few who accidentally stumbled in front of an approaching train. One in particular had me crying when i finally got home. I really feel bad for the engineers who have to handle the stress. I knew one engineer who hit a nun. Crazy.

Last edited by FollowMeDown; 10-21-2019 at 10:40 AM.
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Old 10-21-2019, 03:52 PM
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Hey, El DeLuxo -- any word on that skateboarder? I've been googling, and haven't found anything on him (which I guess is good news; I assume a death would've made the news).
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Old 10-21-2019, 04:38 PM
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What the hell does the sexual orientation of passersby on the street have to do with the tale of a car accident?
The OP is under the effects of a traumatic event, the importance and relevance of details gets messed up in such a situation, I would not interpret too much into it. He is seeing flashbacks and cannot weigh them according to relevance yet, that will take some time, if my own past traumatic experiences are any guide. I wish him and the victim well, I know that is not better than offering thoughts and prayers, but still.
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Old 10-21-2019, 04:52 PM
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Earlier this month, nearby, the railroad crossing guard gates came down. An impatient, possibly self-entitled, fellow saw that the freight train was a ways away and decided to go around the gates. Unfortunately for the driver, he failed to notice the high speed passenger train coming the other way on the other set of tracks. The fellow was killed instantly, car split in half, body parts everywhere, guts spilling out, etc. A friend was the first pedestrian on the scene. The woman in front of the line of cars was so traumatized that she was taken to the hospital. My friend learned something from the passenger train driver: he didn't see it happen. Turns out he was trained to look down if an unavoidable collision is coming so as to reduce the amount of psychological trauma. The lesson: if you see something awful about to happen, look away. Goes against instinct, of course.

Did observe a similarly traumatic event in my youth. Me and two friends went camping in the Shenandoah mountains. We picked a beautiful, if illegal, spot to camp on the trail, close to the edge of a valley right below a waterfall. The lady in our group spotted two kids climbing up the other side of the valley without any gear. She's freaking out, saying "they're gonna fall, they're gonna fall." The first kid makes it over the edge of the cliff, but his little brother couldn't make it. His brother holds out a stick for him to grab onto but, alas, he didn't make it. Fell about six stories, tree limbs breaking his fall a bit onto the rocks below. My other friend runs the 2.5 miles to the nearest permanent camp site. Was probably close to an hour and a half before any help arrived. We had to get going and didn't stick around. I called the Park Service a week later to learn he was helo'd out and survived. I guess it made an indelible impression since I remember it pretty vividly 40 years later. Park Rangers were decent enough not to cite us for our illegal campsite and one was kind of tickled that I was out in the middle of nowhere reading "The Shining" :-)

Your trauma will fade but you should take a lesson from it: don't take unnecessary risks cause sh*t definitely happens. Heck, if I'm waiting for a crosswalk light at a dangerous intersection, I even stand by the pole on the far side of traffic. I don't stand at the edge of subway platforms, either. I guess that me going skydiving does make me kind of a hypocrite re:unnecessary risk, lol.

Last edited by Pferdchen; 10-21-2019 at 04:55 PM. Reason: grammar correction, probably a lot left
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Old 10-21-2019, 11:56 PM
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I guess that me going skydiving does make me kind of a hypocrite re:unnecessary risk, lol.
Statistically, you're safer hanging from a parachute than you would be in traffic.

I've done some hang gliding, and I'm more scared commuting on my bike (been hit a couple of times, and gone over the handlebars a half dozen times).
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Old 10-22-2019, 01:22 AM
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Statistically, you're safer hanging from a parachute than you would be in traffic.
Not to hijack, but how is this figured?
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Old 10-22-2019, 01:41 AM
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...

You know that thing about not being a jerk? You should try harder.
Dammit! I came to make similar joke.

Ok, how about:

I just saw a thing I wish I hadn't seen.

Worst, yet best clickbait thread title ever. I hate myself for clicking it.

But to the OP. I've been in similar situations a couple times. It sticks with you for a while. I wish you luck.


However, I'm a bit weirded out that in this time of extreme stress you cared enough about the sexual preferences of the people involved.
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Old 10-22-2019, 06:30 AM
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Not to hijack, but how is this figured?
Before the chute opens, there's a fair bit of uncertainty about how your descent will end. After the chute opens, the probability of a safe outcome is much higher.
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Old 10-22-2019, 07:03 AM
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Sorry you had to see that, DeLuxo. Any specific reason you don't talk to the police if you can avoid it, or is it general "I'd rather not be any closer to a cop than I have to"?






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Originally Posted by Spiderman View Post
What the hell does the sexual orientation of passersby on the street have to do with the tale of a car accident?
The OP wasn't actually referencing the man's sexual orientation (which happens to be unknown) but his speech. I've just tried putting amanerado (the word I'd use to describe the kind of speech I believe the OP meant) through google translate and it gives me:
mannered (which I don't think I've ever encountered without a "mild")
affected (ok, which % of the population uses this one in every-month speech?)
camp (methinks this one isn't getting much mileage lately, its variant "campy" gets more but still sounds like someone is talking about the 1970s)
twee (to which I can only say "dafuq?").

The identification of that type of speech with male homosexuality is the reason we have jokes such as "he's not gay, he's European" or people who think they're not gay because they don't talk like that.
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Old 10-22-2019, 09:43 AM
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Before the chute opens, there's a fair bit of uncertainty about how your descent will end. After the chute opens, the probability of a safe outcome is much higher.
Actually, all I have for a cite is that I was thinking of the first Superman movie, where he tells Lois ďI hope this doesn't put you off of flying. Statistically speaking, it's the safest form of travel.Ē
  #40  
Old 10-22-2019, 10:13 AM
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I've done some hang gliding, and I'm more scared commuting on my bike (been hit a couple of times, and gone over the handlebars a half dozen times).
Did you happen to see this video of a tandem hang glider where the pilot failed to connect up his passenger? A very scary two minutes hanging on for his life.
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Old 10-22-2019, 06:25 PM
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Did you happen to see this video of a tandem hang glider where the pilot failed to connect up his passenger? A very scary two minutes hanging on for his life.
Yes! I take requests from students and one day five of them came in with "You gotta show the hang glider guy!"

But didn't he have a beautiful landscape to almost die in?
  #42  
Old 10-23-2019, 06:48 AM
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Yes! I take requests from students and one day five of them came in with "You gotta show the hang glider guy!"

But didn't he have a beautiful landscape to almost die in?
The first time I saw the video (Reddit?) I freaked out. I sent my gf a link to it (we were sitting next to each other). Watching her view the video was as hilarious.
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