Last Thursday, I (apparently) took a bit of a knock to the head while mountain biking, and ended up with a concussion, a ride in an ambulance, some time in the ER, and about ten stitches. I don’t remember the crash itself — there’s a gap between a memory of me thinking, “gee, I’m going pretty fast” and the next memory of me moaning for help. Thank God I was (a) wearing my helmet, which now has a nice little crack in it (plus a bit of blood for effect) and (b) riding with friends, who were ahead of me, but were thoughtful enough to turn around and look for me when I didn’t catch up with them. They called the ambulance, woke me up, kept me from going into shock too terribly bad, etc. Everyone was stellar: the EMTs, the emergency room doctor, resident, and nurses (well, except one nurse — Steve — who didn’t share my concern about the blood gushing out of my knee), and my spouse, who kept it together in the ER despite the disturbing image of me strapped into a neck brace and back board. CT scan and X-ray were fine; in fact, the only long-term damage is a chipped tooth. And my confidence, of course — I’m sure I’ll be a bit gun-shy the next time I go riding, which, I’ve been instructed, will not be for a few weeks.
One of the memories I do have from the accident is talking to my friend about my dissertation while waiting for the ambulance. My friends were checking my cognitive functions, and they decided to ask about my work. To which I thought: “Shit, that’s hard enough when I’m totally awake!” I mumbled something about the topic and the time period, but I don’t think I generated a thesis statement. And that’s too bad, because wouldn’t it have been awesome to come up with a great thesis while coming out of a concussion? Now that’s a good way to introduce a book.
Unfortunately, this has put me a bit behind. I meant to have my last chapter sent off this week, but I don’t think that will happen. I also want to get a panel proposal ready for the ASEH, which is due this Friday. And there’s some summer school grading and this and that and the other thing. On top of it all, it still feels a little weird to look at the computer screen and type. There’s a slight disconnection there, and it’ll probably take some time to heal.