Okay, this post is not about a boy on a bike. Not really. It's about what it's like to live inside my head.
I'm certain I'm not alone. I bet most fiction writers have a head like mine. Probably many other creative types, as well. And definitely most neurotics.
This morning, I was reading the paper at the breakfast table when I happened to glance out the window. I saw a young boy riding his bike on our semi-quiet street. The following took place in less than thirty seconds:
A car barrels down the street, bashing into the boy and his bike. The car keeps going. In shock, I race out of the house. Well, that's not realistic. With rheumatoid arthritis, I don't actually race anywhere, but I hobble outside as fast as I can. The boy is lying at the side of the road, bleeding profusely from a wound on his head. He's moaning. No, no. He's unconscious--better!--and his leg is twisted under his poor little body. I tear off my sweater, not caring that I'm now in the middle of the street in my bra. I think "Oh no! Why did I buy an acrylic sweater? It won't be very absorbent!" I press it hard to the wound on the boy's head and scream for help. Should I scream for the boy's mother or just a general scream? A general scream is best, I decide. I'm not a good screamer, but I manage. I'm pretty darn heroic this morning. I should have grabbed my cell phone on the way out of the house, though, so I could call 911. Okay, change it: I did grab my cell. I punch in the numbers with the hand not holding the acrylic sweater to the boy's head. I have to do it twice because I make a mistake the first time.
"Do you want some more coffee?"
"Huh?" I look away from the window to see John with the coffee pot in his hand. "Oh, right," I say. "Coffee. Sure."
John pours. He knows I was somewhere far away. He's used to it. As for me, I'm exhausted from the exertion of the last thirty seconds. I drink my coffee, then go into the bedroom to change into a cotton sweater.