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1:42 pm - Thurs 12/27/07
Well, That's ONE Way To Get Out Of Work

Well, That's ONE Way To Get Out Of Work

Xmas Day 2007 (2:30 PM.)

(Back in the ER at Hollywood Presbyterian, getting looked at after last night’s fracas.)

As you know, I wasn’t nuts about having to work today before this happened, so I was even less inclined afterwards (When I got home, I almost went to the ER, not because I thought there was something wrong with me - beyond the obvious - but to cover my ass if I called out today).

But I didn’t go to the ER, and I didn’t call out.

(Mark H, the neighbor I walk the dog for, called a cab for me at one point, to go to the ER, because I wasn’t anxious to venture out again, or to have to try to park afterwards if I drove. But they went to the wrong place or something, cause when Mark called back after a time, the dispatcher said they’d been there, no one was there, and now there weren’t any drivers. So at that point, I gave up, and called it a night. But anyway...)

When I approached the door at work today, before locking up my bike, some of my coworkers were hanging around outside. And that’s when I realized, from the “Oh my Gods!”’s and “What happened?”’s, that I looked worse than I thought.

So I told my story, and I told it again to Francis when I was inside (Francis is one of the managers).

He took me off the schedule, and suggested I get myself looked at, “just in case” there was something wrong beyond the obvious lumps and scrapes.

(Thank you, Francis)


(3:30 p.m.)

Still at the ER, back from getting a brain scan and X-rays.

Mark H. just called, checking up on me.

When I got home last night, not knowing what to do with myself and not wanting to be alone, I knocked on his door.

He’d gotten mugged himself a year or so ago, so he was particularly understanding and sympathetic (After he woke up, that is; I’d obviously roused him from a sound sleep).


Well, the verdict from the ER doc, after looking at the head X-rays and brain scan, was “No broken bones, and you still have a brain” (And while my right hand hurts a little, X-rays again revealed no broken bones); he told me I was going to get more sore and stiff - which I have - so he prescribed some painkillers.

I kind of wish I hadn’t gone - that’s at least another $75 down the drain (The ER co-pay) - but I guess better to know there’s nothing wrong than not (Ditto the prescriptions - for Ibuprofen and Flexeril; I didn’t think I really needed them, but better to have them and not need them than the other way round. Besides, the Flexeril is a muscle-relaxant and sedative, and to be quite honest, I’m up for a little muscle-relaxing sedation right about now).

When you go to the ER as a result of a crime, they have to call the police, so I spoke to two more police officers about the incident yesterday.

Like the cops I spoke to that night, they weren’t terribly encouraging about finding the guy, making it clear that I could file a report if I wanted to, but it wasn’t going to do much good (Apparently, you have to know your mugger and be able to lead the cops to his house before a crime like this will be solved). They just said, in the future, I might want to avoid Santa Monica late at night, and go down Sunset instead, which is safer.

(I can do them one better. Often, instead of going all the way down Sunset to Western, then taking Western most of the way home, I turn sooner, onto Van Ness, which is a residential street with no foot traffic that time of night, and take that all the way down to 4th street, then home; I was going down Van Ness that night, before turning onto Santa Monica, to cut across to Western. But anyway...)

As you might imagine, my thoughts the past day or so have been pretty much been all about the attack.

And how something like that might be avoided in the future (Stay off Santa Monica, stay on the street whenever possible, get a better job/a better life that’ll mean I’m not riding my bike that late at night in the first place, etc).

And how I can protect myself (What can I do on my bike? Mount a machine gun on the handlebars?). And this is going to sound odd, but in a way, I’m thinking about self-defense (Something with practical applications, like Krav Maga perhaps), not just to avoid getting hurt myself, but to avoid killing someone because I don’t know how else to stop them. To be able to knock someone out or disable them enough to get away (A lot of my thoughts have centered around my good fortune in not getting seriously hurt or killed that night, but I’ve also been thinking about how, if I’d been a little stronger and the guy had been a little weaker, if things had gone a little differently and I’d been able to keep knocking his head against the pavement, I might have killed him. And while I heartily endorse the idea of “better him than me” in that scenario, that’s still not a very good outcome).

And wondering what was in this guy’s mind, to do what he did. And I mean that not just morally (“Beating up people and stealing their stuff is wrong, Young Man...”), but practically as well; I don’t know that I look like a “tough guy” (And you and I know I’m certainly not), but in any case, I’m 6'2" and 240 lbs, and that hardly seems like an automatic “easy mark”.

(I guess it was the bike; he thought he’d catch me off balance enough, knocking me off my bike, and be on me fast enough, to put me out in a hurry. And if the belt he hit me with had caught me buckle-first across the nose or an eye, instead of on the head, it might have gone just that way.)

Well, there's more, but I'm already sensing that I want to talk about this more than anyone wants to hear about it, beyond the initial story (And that's what Javier is for, anyway; we're back "in session" next Wednesay), so I'm going to wrap this up, and get dressed for today's cardio workout.

(On next week's schedule, they've got me working, once again, for six days, and on both New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. Which leaves me wondering...Can I arrange another mugging between now and then?)


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