How many times have you experienced what could easily have been an abrupt cessation to your life? Remember that time you drunkenly got behind the wheel of the car and with one eye closed somehow made it home safely even though the final few feet scraped the paint off the car door onto the brick wall alongside the driveway?
I remember riding my bicycle along the lip of a major drop off, testing my courage and my cycling skills. I lost but luckily when my wheels slipped over the ravine I stayed upright in the saddle (so to speak) and merely slid down the incline. rather than flipping and rolling and breaking my neck.
Back when I was very young there were few consumer warnings about child safety. Many of the toys and equipment we enjoyed back then are only unsafe memories. One warning I have some anecdotal experience will is the concern for choking hazards. I suspect my toy chest back then was overloaded with choking hazards, from Parcheesi buttons to Tiddlywinks, not to mention bags of marbles. But the choking hazard I remember was associated with an interest in science: what would an eight ounce teardrop lead fishing sinker taste like? Here was a near death by lead poisoning I luckily avoided by gagging effectively. Although not as flamboyant, sucking the sinker was more dangerous that an earlier attempt to scrap the green growth off the blades of a moving fan with a too-short finger.
Is it luck or some nine lives thing? I better get to reading: there’s a lot to do and I have a feeling I’m on my last life … but I’m fully vaccinated!
This months base reading list:
- Magical Thinking: True Stories — Augusten Burroughs
- Adolphe — Benjamin Constant
- The Lost Scrapbook – Evan Dara
- Schultz — J. P. Donleavy
- A House To Let — Charles Dickens, Wilkie Collins, Elizabeth Gaskell
- Baudolino – Umberto Eco
- Amelia — Henry Fielding
- A Bell For Adano — John Hersey
- My Year Abroad — Chang-Rae Lee
- Dodsworth — Sinclair Lewis
- The Rebels — Sandor Marai
- Michael Tolliver Lives — Armistead Maupin
- Pierre, or The Ambiguities — Herman Melville
- God Help the Child — Toni Morrison
- A Rage To Live — John O’Hara
- Quartet In Autumn — Barbara Pym
- The Yellow Sofa — Eça de Quierós
- The Professor of Desire — Philip Roth
- The Small House at Allington — Anthony Trollope
- Big Breasts and Wide Hips — Mo Yan
I noticed a big difference in bicycle safety nowadays. Can you spot it?