Notes From A Walkman Junkie: Thirty-Six Female Fell On Face
“Thirty-six female fell on face.” That was the last noted, and fairly well documented event in my life at the age of thirty-six. I am now thirty-eight and have been thinking quite a bit lately about loss and other fucked things. These thoughts have lead me to recall the not so pleasant details of the face fall tale of woe. While working at the gallery nearly two years ago, I had an accident involving poor decisions and a hard floor.
It was a chilly day in April, but the gallery is usually quite warm due to the additional lighting for artwork and inflatable evil cat unicorn horns and squirrel masks. I was sitting at the front desk, contemplating life, love, and whether or not stinky man Joe would be around today to further curse my universe, when I started to feel very hot, weak and dizzy.
I decided that the smart thing to do would be to let someone know that I was not feeling well and remain seated until some help arrived, or I was feeling better. What I did do was convince myself that heat was my only problem and proceeded to walk all the way to the back of the gallery, across a sea of hard and unforgiving floors, to turn down what now appeared to be several black fuzzy blobs, but presumably, was the air conditioning control panel.
About midway through my journey (to what I was convinced was the only logical solution: “Make room not hot. Fix everything”), my dizzy, weak condition grew worse, and I thought, “I’ve made a terrible mistake” seconds before total blackness and promptly addressing the hardwood floor, mostly with my face.
When I regained consciousness, an unfamiliar man was standing over me with something in his hand and said, “Don’t move. I have your tooth.” Naturally, my thoughts went directly to I must be in The Human Centipede and I am going to die. The good news was, I am often wrong about my immediate hunches and tend to overreact. The bad news was, I was on the floor, bleeding, and my front tooth, to which I had grown very fond, was no longer with my head.
Because the state of my health and well-being was unclear at this time, an ambulance was summoned and a couple of paramedics chatted me up about some of my appealing options for the evening: “We are going to strap you to a flat board now unless you’d rather we not do that.” I politely declined and breezily suggested, “No thank you, I’ll just be on the stretcher normally for now and see what happens.”
Once in the ambulance, the paramedic accompanying me in the back, proceeded to ask me some standard questions: “How old are you? How much do you weigh? Have you ever fainted before? Do your tights go all the way up or are they easily removed? How did you get into the art business?” Obviously , the answer to the last question was “I just sort of fell into it” and we had a good chuckle as my mouth unremittingly filled with blood. He then explained he needed to attach something to my chest and was going to place his hand on my left breast. I am pretty sure that was a date.
My brief and somewhat gory love affair/technical molestation with the paramedic ended at the hospital where the nurses took over with comforting verbal reports: “Your coloring looks like shit. I am sorry, there is just no other word to describe it.” “How about bad?” I would have thrown out a few more more, but, hey, I’m no doctor (plus, the void space in my mouth was altering my speech to an exact mix of Margot Kidder and Lou Farrigno, so I was keeping my chit-chat to a minimum).
As it turned out, dehydration and poor choices were to blame for my exciting misadventure to floortown, but life barrels on, repeatedly pointing back to my father’s classic advice, “Sit down before you fall down and find yourself on the floor bleeding and crying while a strange man stands over you with your tooth and you think you are in The Human Centipede and then you are on a gross speed date with a paramedic, you toothless freak.”