Monday, May 01, 2006

My Brush with Death

Once upon a time, actually 1/1/1999, I was down in Ft Naughtydale with my ex (wasn't my ex then, but you get the picture), and we were kinda itching to do something. The night before was New Years Eve, and being that everywhere was 21 that night we just stayed in and watched the boats go by. She called her peeps, and for whatever reason we decided to go down to Coconut Grove. We were running a tad late, but its a late night town, and it was all good. My ex's ex (and well I since found out she was still fucking him--thus part of why she's my ex) was with us, along with his new homosexual love interest (I'm the only guy she dated who hasn't since sucked cock--doesn't that say something that every other guy would rather suck cock than stay with her), and my exes cracked out friend. The five of us were in my old hoopty; it was very wet out; it was after midnight; and the roads were empty.

The drive from Ft Naughtydale to Miami can be tedious with traffic, but without it, the number of lanes really makes it a breeze. We were zooming down to Miami at approximately 100mph (my speedometer stopped at 70, but it was almost at "E" on the gas gauge). Things went well until we got into Miami. Coconut Grove is down by Coral Gables (like that means shit to you guys, but let's just say it's pretty far down into Miami), so we still had a bit to go. At this point we were still going quite fast, and this big red Dodge pickup truck was approaching, but given that there were about seven (yes 7) lanes of traffic going our direction and there never was more than one (yes 1) car we were passing, anyone could get around us. Well anyone by Bubba Roadpizza (folks need names, so sometimes I got to make them up). Mr Roadpizza started to ride my ass like Bert on Ernie, and it was getting old. I just pulled over, as he was not driving so well anyway, and I'd rather let him by. As he passed, he pumped his fist, shouted some nice remarks about my mom (she says hi btw), and we couldn't help be be frightened by the incredible amount of anger in his eyes. It was a large truck, and it had huge toolboxes and a welding rig in back. There were also a few coolers.

Like most tailgating assholes, Bubba didn't really pull away, so it seemed kinda pointless. We were approaching the flyover, so we stayed in the left lane, while he was a bit ahead toward the right. Flyover? Well in South Florida they have HOV (carpool) lanes, which is pretty common, but in some stretches of town there are flyovers, or one lane bridges that take a direct route through some curvy patches and also pretty much guarantee there is no cop hiding in a speed trap. They also provide an awesome view of Miami at 12:30AM or so. Given the direct route and seemingly unenforceable speed limit, it's no surprise that Bubba wanted to cross over a few lanes to catch the flyover. What was surprising is how retarded he was, as he did it way too late (perhaps for dramatic effect or just slow thinking) and lost control. The exit for the flyover has a 30 foot steel barricade parting the lanes before the concrete wall takes over. Mr Roadpizza managed to hit it, dislodge it, and bisect his truck into the cab/frame and bed sections. He also earned his name by being ejected from his car. This all occurred right in front of me while going 100mph on wet roads in a fully loaded Olds Cutlass.

I was fucked.

I tried slowing as best I could, but my breaks were locking and the car was starting to fishtail. Everything was in slow motion, but there was still next to no time to react. The exit itself likely was 16 feet or so wide, but with the two parts of the truck and guard rail occupying most of the area (some was still moving), there was not any room. On top of it all, the shit was staggered, so there was no straight route. Oh, btw, the gas tank had exploaded.

We were fucked.

Everyone was screaming, I tried to skid my car, still going 80 or so through it all, left and right to pass through the shit (and avoid Bubba's lifeless corpse). The car skidded up the ramp about a 1/4 mile, and it left behind some neat skid marks. The guys in the car flung open the car doors and started saying things like "fuck" and the gals just cried and held hands. There were beer and Dr Pepper cans everywhere on the ramp, as the cooler flew out of the back of the truck and up the ramp. Crown Royal bottles were there too. I went to check on Bubba (the gas tank already exploded, so what could go wrong?) Acetylene! That could go wrong. Let me say, that shit is hot. Like hotter than fuck hot. His tanks blew on the way towards him, and I lost all desire to check on him after that. After a few moments, to incredibly happy homosexuals approached with in a jeep. They quickly hit it off with the likeminded folks in my ride (they were oblivious to the still burning carnage and dead dude. Before long a TV news helicopter was overhead, and the dudes from the Jeep started throwing cans at the helicopter. Notice, I have yet to mention one thing--pigs! There were none!

A truck had split in two, blew up twice, knocked out power to I95 for a few miles ahead, and managed to draw the attention of a news helicopter. No pigs. A second news helicopter showed up (knowing the insanely competitive South Florida news operations, I kinda kept an eye on them to see if one would shoot the other down. The police finally showed up, but they didn't want any witness accounts, names, or anything. I guess they just concluded he was a drunk. I had some bits of glass in my tires (no punctures) and I'd late find out that the fire made some of the dirt and salt on my car impossible to remove thereafter. We went down to Coconut Grove, drank some coffee, and tried to unwind. The four gay guys obliviously giggled and became fast friends. It was a long night, and I'll never forget it. It was rather crazy.

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