Blood on the sill


  • When I was in my teens, I corresponded with my cousin (3rd cousin once removed, actually), Danielle, via cassette tape. I’d record a message on one side and she would record on the flip side. She lived in Edmonton, Alberta, so in a way, she was my exotic foreign cousin and at the same time, she was a connection to Canada, where my family was from.
  • On at least one occasion, my friend, David, participated in the recording of my message to Dani. We were silly and stupid and goofy. In the course of the recording, we made some reference to a tiny island off the coast of Great Britain.
  • I used to sort of collect maps from National Geographic. I’d pin them to the walls and ceiling of my room.
  • Also, I was very active in a martial arts class, attending and working out 4-5 days a week. Thinking back, I was in REALLY good shape. What a shame I slacked off on that.


Some time later, in eighth or ninth grade, I was lying in bed listening to this old recording. It came to the part where we were talking about this small island. I happened to have that map tacked to the ceiling above my bed. I stood up from my supine position and at the same time, tilted my head back to look at this map. I sort of recall a sensation of falling through blackness but from a great distance, almost as if it was happening to someone else or something. Well, the next thing I know, I became aware that I was sitting or lying back. All of this came on  gradually, It took longer to put all of these elements together than it will take to read this. I noticed some blood next to me on the window sill and I realized that I had fallen half through my bedroom window. I got up and went to the bathroom to look in the mirror. I felt something behind my right ear. I reached back and pulled a 2-inch shard of glass out of my head. More blood, yada, yada, yada.

Anyway, it seemed that low blood pressure plus standing up suddenly (sending blood to my legs) and tilting my head back (interfering with the flow of blood to my brain) had caused me to black out. Good times!


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