Nothing resets your priorities like not being able to feel your legs...or your arms...or... I think you get the picture. One minute I was riding along through the woods to Newport, cursing the cold and damp and the next I was wearing a Volkswagen Bug and a Douglas Fir.
When I awoke from my unexpected nap I was immediately aware of the fact that I couldn't see shit. I thought is was midnight, it was so dark. Suddenly the pilot of the Bug's face blazed white against the blackness. We were nearly nowhere, trapped on an embankment sloping toward the Yaquina River, daring gravity to get aggressive. I just wanted to sleep; I was so tired. Just a little nap, nothing long. Shock. Shock and unimaginable pain thinly cloaked by shock. A friend suddenly in the back seat, yelling at me to stay awake, lying to me about my injuries. The faces of three men loomed eerily through the driver's side window. I knew they'd torn me, attached to the passenger seat, from the car. I knew this because I was outside now, screaming as they strapped me to a stretcher to drag me through the blackberry bushes up to the waiting ambulance. As they slid me into the land of morphine and...well...morphine, I reaffirmed my atheism and weird sense of humor (to avoid saying "oh, god" I switched to obscenities referring to two of my favorite below-the-waist activities. You're smart. Figure it out.)
Even with five major fractures and regularly revised guesses as to whether I would ever walk again, I managed to have adventures. I determined to stop pretending I'm "normal" or that my eccentricities are "bad."
While I stayed first in a hospital, and later in a nursing home, I could easily have given up. But, since I'm more stubborn than most people, I proved everyone wrong and became the delightful Exotic companion you all know and love. I learned to avoid the steamed fish, to order the vegetarian lasagna and, to the extreme displeasure of the staff, to wheel to the bathroom and, without a staff member, blissfully do my business in forbidden privacy.
However, I found out that I could give head to a man in a hospital bed while I occupied a wheelchair. Sadly, it was the head of the idiot who had flown the Volkswagen. Fukengruven, indeed. But I also saw one of the most amazing full moons I've ever been honored to see. But these could not make up for my loss of freedom.
Not until I could leave the grounds on my own accord would I be real again. I went to bed, ate and bathed on another person's schedule. Luckily, my captivity was necessary and brief.
Not everyone's internment is so benign. As an example, Portland's own Summer Golden is telling the world about her time in the Sacramento Women's Detention Facilities. Her crime? She was a professional dominatrix. Remember this and vote No on 31 when the time comes. Sacramento, in its infinite wisdom, decided that smacking a man's butt for money is prostitution. For a year, Golden's daily adventures consisted of watching herself and her fellow inmates suffer the slings and arrows of an outrageously sick "justice" and prison system. Golden's two-act play, Listen Up Ladies, will tell her story starting May 24th, for four consecutive weekends at the Bull Ring Restaurant (1900 NW 27th Avenue, Portland). Being unfamiliar with that wacky First Amendment thing, the Sacramento authority figures have let Golden know that writing about her experiences could be an investment in legal misery. But Golden stands firm,"I want the cops to see it." I do, too. And I think it would be pretty nice if we saw it as well.