Saturday, November 27, 2004

The 5 Times I Almost Died

Hello, my name is Ryan Walsh and I play guitar in the Stairs. I have also nearly died a total of five different times. I feel lucky to be alive. In order to show my gratefulness for continued life I will share with you the stories of the five times I almost died.

The Five Times I Almost Died

1. A German Shepard knocks me down in 1987 and tears the everliving shit of my head/ear. I hold the ear onto my head on the way to the OR. I lost a lot of blood. At first the dog was being friendly towards me and the suddenly it looked at me with evil in its eye. He went right for the ear - tried to Van Gough me.

2. I attempt to jump a small chain between wooden posts and land face down onto the pavement in the 4th grade. Smash out my front two teeth and my upper lip splits in two. This is not life threatening in itself. But the plastic surgeon forgot to put me on antibiotics and the wound became infected. It came close to spreading to my head in which case I would've been a goner. I was in the hospital for weeks. They used to come in twice a day to use a syringe like device full of water to inject into the wounded bloody lip in order to clean it and make me scream like all holy hell. The hospital had Nintendo however. Home did not. Being in the hospital was not so bad and I didn't know, at the time, that I almost died.

3. 7th grade. I fell through some ice up in New Hampshire. I was on a trip with a church group. There were no adults around and I smartassed my way onto the ice. Crack. Sink. All the other kids just watched not knowing what to do. I was clawing at the ice shards trying to get a grip and get to solid ground. I remember screaming, "I'm not gonna die! I'm not gonna die!" over and over. I finally got some fingers dug into some shore dirt and pulled myself out.

4. 10th grade. I make friends with the older kids in school and they invite me one night to play a game called "Fuck The Rich." Basically that involved driving to rich neighborhoods and driving all over their lawns. One guy came out of his house wearing a bathrobe and holding a crow bar. He sunk the crowbar right into the car door but we still escaped with the crowbar still hanging out of the car. However, later that night the driver decided to steal gas. The cops caught up to us and we tried to outdrive them. We were going 80 MPH down small curvy sidestreets and we smashed directly into a brick wall. No one was wearing seatbelts. No one was hurt. I'd classify it as a miracle frankly. For some reason, even after the crash, we decided to try to push the car into hiding to evade the cops. Moments later the entire town of Dedham's police force had us surrounded. The driver was arrested. The cops were gleeful when he began to cry and tell them that the vehicle was his father's company car. Being the only minor of the group I was the only one who had to be brought home by a cop. My parents had just gotten home from vacation and were not happy. All the rest of the kids (besides the driver) tore out the page with the story in the Monday edition of the town newspaper to avoid trouble. I had minor neck and head aches but no one was seriously hurt. Which is bizarre. As if that wasn't enough trauma for one god fearing New England I was to almost die one more time come the year 2004.

5. 2004. On my bike on the pedestrian foot bridge in Allston that covers the Mass Pike. I sped down the ramp and crossed the street no problem. But I was headed to Harvard Square so I was going down that side street. There was a car coming up that street. To avoid it I swerved and my bike handle hit a telephone pole and I was launched off the bike off into the air. I hit the ground and skidded for about 3 feet. If I had skid 4 feet I would smashed my head into a textiles building and died. Stupidly, I was not wearing a helmet (this was a few months before Kristen Malone's accident in the very same location). An Asian family got out of their car (the car that made me swerve) to see if I was alright. I was dazed and walking around in circles moaning and barking.

I'm not quite sure what I think about psychic's but I'm open to the idea that people are able to sense things about the past and future that we can't with our five senses. That said, there used to be an old gypsy woman who lived in the apartment above mine (this is all true by the way, I know it might sound outlandish). Her name, as she told it to me, was Grandmother. She used to leave me soup in a plastic bag outside of my door (Apparently I took too long to wash the bowls and return them so she had to resort to the bags). Very kind. Once while were out on the front steps of the building she grabbed my palm and began reading it. According to Grandmother I am to live to be very old and die quite peacefully. That's comforting. But has anyone ever been told by a psychic that they're going to die in the near future? I feel like that's "bad for business." Grandmother did this for free however and she had always been truthful to me otherwise. Over the years I became good friends with Grandmother and once had to drive her and her sister around town trying to find this certain deli that sold jewelry from the back of their store. But that's a story for another time. If I'm around to tell it. You never know.

Ryan Walsh - November 2004


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