I sorted through my papers as I prepared to leave Coquitlam, all ‘important’ papers were mailed from London to be with me in Canada. I discovered a file appropriately enough called Accident and within that file found the paperwork that referred to the second day I was in London, September 13, 2014. On Pentonville Road, I looked the wrong way and was struck by a motorbike(UK); motorcycle (US). I had no premonition or omen. I ‘awoke’ nine hours later surrounded by a bevy of men. As I hilariously note: “I knew I was not in heaven, there were no women there.” I had 27 staples in my head, 26 stitches on my forehead, multiple contusions and bruising. I landed on my head apparently and that was the situs of most of the injuries. I took a selfie in all of my glamour. if the injuries were one each deeper I would have died, said a tactless doctor to a trainee within my earshot.
The emergency medical care I received was excellent. I was released from the hospital in four days. I knew no one in London; neither friend, foe nor family came to help me recuperate. But I did begin my classes at City University London in a timely fashion. There is residual damage, but it is minimal and my glasses hide the only obvious evidence. I have no feeling in the top of my head which means I never can feel when my hair is dirty and I can bang the top of my head with abandon. Great trick. How did I respond? With great humor of course and I sent out this general announcement.
COMEDY WORLD STRUCK BY SECOND CRUEL BLOW IN SEPTEMBER
Many fans were able to endure the loss of Joan Rivers with the promise of a future replacement by novice Alexis McBride. “My plan is to complete my Master’s program in Creative Writing and then go onto Improv Training to achieve my second career goal – that of being a stand up comedian”
But Alexis’ ambitions were amputated by a motorcycle accident in London on September 13. She suffered severe lacerations to her forehead when a motorcycle collided with her jay- walking- left -looking self. Her physical pain and confusion were further tested when the consulting physician told her that a nerve in her forehead had been permanently severed. This nerve enables the raised eyebrow, startled response so essential in comedic situations. Observers reported McBride responded with gasps and shock when the physician, clearly a surgeon with no social skills said:”It’s no problem, its not that you are a stand up comedian, or anything.” Donations may be sent to the Foundation for Flat Brows. ”
Seriously, all of this, or most of this anyway is the truth. The truth is nerve severance, nerve’s function and physician’s comment.
I am doing really very well. I am not looking in the mirror and not even trying to raise my eyebrows. There is only so much a person can take.
Other voices chimed in. Brother Denis, then in my firmament, commented and I reported.
When I had been hit by a motor bike and had a huge scar on my forehead Denis said I should tell people that I had an excess amount of grey matter so they took some of mine and distributed it to others who needed it because they were not nearly as smart.Then I should say to the person:”Too bad I don’t have any left for you!” The recipients of that joke did not find it funny. I did!
But did the police, the judicial system, the institutions of the United Kingdom do anything at all to remedy the situation and make me whole? The question is a resounding NO. Several months later I received this dismal notice from the police department. It revealed the identity of the man that drove the motorcycle that day. Please note that his first name and his last name are the same. How creative can his parents could have been? The notice is attached.
And my remedy in a court of law? I did explore it at one point in time and heard from a very helpful attorney that the most I could expect was 16,000 pounds. His firm would not take on that paltry sum. I was warned it would take years to pursue in the clogged so-called justice system in the UK and it would be necessary for me to prove negligence. I wisely decided to instead turn my profit making motives into a book about my uncle. But did all of that induce me to respect the institutions, the laws and its practices in the United Kingdom, the so-called Great Britain. Absolutely not.
What else did the accident do. A bitter truth was realized; No one cared enough to come and be with me or help me in any way. No one. But I did learn I could survive without them and that I was very tough. Self esteem resulted and a self reliance that usually never stops. Months and months after the accident I realized on a fundamental level that it was a near death experience. Therefore, I live in the moment. That is the real gift.