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Skid Vicious and Bernie Rubber - The Book of the Celestial Cow

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May 2nd, 2007


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09:26 pm - Skid Vicious and Bernie Rubber
This morning, I paid the price for my Veronica Mars obsession.

Had I not come home to watch and post, I would have spent the night in the Argonaut Hotel, woken up in a fancy bed, and gone downstairs to continue the off-site. Instead, I woke up in my regular bed, saw the dismal ratings, and left my apartment much later than I'd intended. To top it all off, it had been raining, so I couldn't speed without abandon. Or at least, I shouldn't.

I've taken the ramp to 24 literally hundreds of times. I use it more often than any other ramp. I very frequently accelerate up the ramp, preparing to reach highway speeds.

This morning, I accelerated up the ramp on the inside lane, curving to the left. I could not have been going that fast. 40, maybe.

About halfway through the turn, the back of my car decided it didn't really want to follow the road anymore, and it began to follow its own trajectory, pulling me along with it.

For a control freak like me, skidding is one of the most terrifying experiences there is, as it's a total loss of control. You are trapped in a big hunk of metal with a steering wheel and pedals that are now at the mercy of physics. To be honest, though, I wasn't terrified. I was mostly irritated.

I know enough not to fight a skid, so I rode it out as I slid ninety degrees and then came to a thumping halt for no discernible reason. I felt like I had hit something, but there was nothing in front of me/to my side that I had run into. I hoped my car wasn't damaged in some way that wouldn't allow me to get to San Francisco. I was already late.

I looked to my left to see that in the outer lane, a white pickup had stopped, and in the inner lane, two cars had stopped. It was a disorienting position to be in, perpendicular to traffic. I reversed out a few feet, then put the car in drive and straightened myself out as I continued on, telling myself I could afford to be a little more careful the rest of the way. Every single curve, every turn, I was afraid my tires would betray me again. I remembered once marveling at the ability of tires to cling to the road when you're accelerating along a curve.

It was only later that I realized how lucky I had been. If I had been in the outer lane, I would have collided with the railing on the right, and I would have had to get out and look at the damage, and that would have just wasted time. If that white pickup hadn't stopped, it would have nabbed the back of my car, causing me spin around right into oncoming traffic. I'm honestly not sure that the pickup didn't ding me just a little; I can't tell what dents and scratches were there before. I don't really know what caused the strangely abrupt stop. I don't think I had been braking. If the cars in my lane hadn't stopped, they would have crashed right into my side, which would have hurt. I don't think there was any chance of my being seriously injured or killed because it was an uphill, curved ramp coming off of a street, so no one was going homicidally fast. But I really really really could have gotten into an accident. Excuse me: traffic collision.

This was not my first time in a skid, but it was the first time I had been driving. The first time was in Melanie's car, on the way back to Ann Arbor from Up North. The roads were icy, and the car suddenly lost traction and slid across the other lane of the two-lane highway and rotated another 180 degrees, depositing us in a ditch. We were lucky there had been no oncoming traffic and that we had a ditch to fall into and not, say, a bottomless chasm. The second time was in Sean's car, on the way back to Ann Arbor from greeting prospies. The roads were icy again, and the car suddenly lost traction, and we drifted toward an exit and turned around once or once-and-a-half, leaving us half in the road. We were lucky Sean had kept us from running into a pole, and we were lucky no one was exiting and slamming into us.

I'm just getting this disturbing feeling that one of these days, I'm not going to be so lucky.
Current Mood: worriedworried
Current Music: Filter - Jurassitol

(34 memoirs | Describe me as "inscrutable")

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:silentsiren47
Date:May 3rd, 2007 04:35 am (UTC)
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Geez. I'm glad you're okay. Be careful out there!
[User Picture]
From:snoopypez
Date:May 3rd, 2007 04:36 am (UTC)
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Dude, that's scary! :O I'm glad you weren't hurt! (And indeed, feel yourself enough to make a Hot Fuzz reference.)
[User Picture]
From:squaringkarma
Date:May 3rd, 2007 05:03 am (UTC)
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*hugs* You're going to be just fine.

I'm so glad you're okay.
[User Picture]
From:glasseseater
Date:May 3rd, 2007 05:14 am (UTC)
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oh no! I'm glad you're safe.
[User Picture]
From:apriljoiex
Date:May 3rd, 2007 05:42 am (UTC)
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Oh the prices we pay for our VM obsession.

I'm glad you're safe.
[User Picture]
From:electricmonk
Date:May 3rd, 2007 05:51 am (UTC)
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Hey, remember when I said don't die? I meant that, buddy. I'm glad this wasn't any worse, and pleeeease be careful with yourself. *hug*
[User Picture]
From:rachelmanija
Date:May 3rd, 2007 06:44 am (UTC)
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Yikes! Good thing you knew not to fight it. I did fight a skid a couple years ago, and I ended up flipping my car at 65 mph. (Destroyed my car, messed up my back to the tune of years of physical therapy.)

Maybe you should get your car looked at-- it should not skid at 40 mph at a curve you've taken before. Might be a problem with the rear (or front) brakes?
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:May 3rd, 2007 02:19 pm (UTC)
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I did fight a skid a couple years ago, and I ended up flipping my car at 65 mph.
Whoa!! That's crazy.

Maybe you should get your car looked at-- it should not skid at 40 mph at a curve you've taken before. Might be a problem with the rear (or front) brakes?
I wasn't braking. It had been raining; the road was wet.
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:tophatter2
Date:May 3rd, 2007 12:41 pm (UTC)
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That's really a terrifying feeling, and I'm glad you're all right. I was a passenger coming back to Ann Arbor from a restaurant with my friends on I-75 when we saw a car in front of us on the on-ramp do a 360 on black ice, then all of a sudden we did one too. Stay safe.
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:May 3rd, 2007 02:22 pm (UTC)
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Eep! I'm not sure if Sean and I did a 360 or not.
[User Picture]
From:latropita
Date:May 3rd, 2007 01:51 pm (UTC)
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Jeez, that's scary! I've never skidding out like that (knock on wood), but it sounds really freaky. Glad you're safe.
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:May 3rd, 2007 02:20 pm (UTC)
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It's about the freakiest thing that can happen to you while driving. You just...sit there and hope to God it turns out okay, because it's certainly out of your damn hands.
[User Picture]
From:daynr
Date:May 3rd, 2007 01:54 pm (UTC)
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Thus I quit driving in winter weather.
[User Picture]
From:daynr
Date:May 3rd, 2007 01:54 pm (UTC)
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Er, glad you're ok.
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:May 3rd, 2007 02:22 pm (UTC)
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Me too.
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From:harper47
Date:May 3rd, 2007 02:26 pm (UTC)
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Scary. I'm glad you're okay.
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From:punzerel
Date:May 3rd, 2007 06:22 pm (UTC)
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Eeep! Be careful! *mother hen instincts explode*
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From:funky_donut
Date:May 3rd, 2007 06:25 pm (UTC)
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OMG, I'm glad you're okay. That's really terrifying. Skidding really is the worst feeling -- and the way to deal with it is so anti-intuitive/instinct.
[User Picture]
From:miniglik
Date:May 3rd, 2007 07:03 pm (UTC)
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Sounds exciting. Woo, skidding!

I totalled a car in the rain once, on the freeway (I-10). The person in front of me stopped, and trying to break I started skidding, then veered to the left to miss them, skid into the railing (the railing won), and did a 270 degree turn (to result in a perpendicular position in the fast lane). It was totally surreal. Somehow my battery jumped out of the car too, although the damage didn't look so bad at first. Then on the news it showed my car and said "rubber neckers cause accidents." Which pissed me off, because if I'd have SEEN that there was an accident up ahead I wouldn't have had to slam on the breaks at the last second and crash my fucking car. Asses.

[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:May 3rd, 2007 07:06 pm (UTC)
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Sheeeesh, Sarah! That sounds frightening. I'm glad you're not dead.
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From:miniglik
Date:May 3rd, 2007 07:17 pm (UTC)
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Ahh! I said "breaks" instead of "brakes." NOOOOOOOOOO!


Yeah, I actually totaled two cars in 6 months when I was 18. Which sounds like I was a horrible driver, but the first was deemed the other driver's fault (she ran a stop sign), and this one there were actual police that saw me crash (and I wasn't sited and the accident was declared "no fault"). Shit just happens sometimes. My parents were quite upset, however, particularly when they brought the car home on a flatbed tow truck and dumped it in front of the house. Heh.
[User Picture]
From:miniglik
Date:May 3rd, 2007 07:18 pm (UTC)
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I'm glad you're not dead too.
[User Picture]
From:miniglik
Date:May 3rd, 2007 08:13 pm (UTC)
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This goes without saying, right? You know you're not allowed to die, right? (But remember, voice post and tell us if you're falling over a cliff.)
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:May 3rd, 2007 08:19 pm (UTC)
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Absolutely, Sarah. I hope I get signal.
[User Picture]
From:zetetyc
Date:May 3rd, 2007 07:38 pm (UTC)
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I'm pleased you (and your vehicle) emerged unscathed...

why couldn't you watch the show on network tv from a hotel room?

i find this puzzling.





[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:May 3rd, 2007 07:48 pm (UTC)
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I could watch, but I could not post/read. I have no laptop.
[User Picture]
From:zetetyc
Date:May 3rd, 2007 08:15 pm (UTC)
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ah. should learn to defer gratification :]

you'd have gotten to watch the show.... for the rest... use paper, publish later :]
[User Picture]
From:spectralbovine
Date:May 3rd, 2007 08:19 pm (UTC)
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That's not how the Veronica Mars experience works!
[User Picture]
From:zetetyc
Date:May 3rd, 2007 08:21 pm (UTC)
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pffft
[User Picture]
From:zetetyc
Date:May 3rd, 2007 08:25 pm (UTC)
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actually my VM experience is currently *watch over my shoulder as i play World of Warcraft*

because I prefer tv when i don't have to see it, and can just listen.
[User Picture]
From:pixie37373
Date:May 4th, 2007 01:15 am (UTC)
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I totally now how that feels, and it sucks. I am glad you are ok. *hugs*
[User Picture]
From:etherealclarity
Date:May 4th, 2007 03:37 am (UTC)
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(as I completely re-iterate the previous comments)

Ohmigosh, scary! I'm so glad you're okay.
[User Picture]
From:iheartbridges
Date:May 4th, 2007 05:08 am (UTC)
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I am very glad you were NOT hurt. You are a lucky boy!

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