Life as an Extreme Sport

In Which Carl Elliott’s “Better Than Well” Gets an Unusual Endorsement

Occasionally, I can suffer from a kind of cognitive dissonance, where I don’t necessarily put together two and two. For example, while I know who Carl Elliott is, to the point that I follow and occasionally talk to him on Twitter, I never really connected the dots between him and the book on my shelf (seen at right, which was from a UW Medical History and Ethics) and the person making bad Mary Poppins jokes. Until today.

So after soundly mocking myself, I tossed the book on my desk and went about my day.

A good eight or nine hours later, I decided to take my nervous energy on a walk to the gym. I’ve been reading printed PDFs all evening, which are not good for sweaty gym hands, so I glanced around for an actual book to read, and there was Elliott’s. Grabbed it and went.

A decision that may have saved my life, or at least kept me out of the emergency room.

On the way home from the gym, I was about 3/4ths of the way through the crosswalk when a speeding SUV made an extremely hight-speed, left-hand turn into the wrong lanes – you know, the one I was in. I barely saw it out of the corner of my eye, and thrust my hand out in reaction.

The hand holding Better Than Well.

The book shattered the passenger window and gave me the momentum, in bounce, to move further backwards than the step I was taking would have given me. As is, my hand impacted hard, breaking the nails, and my foot was run over.

The driver swore at me, naturally, and continued driving.

I didn’t have my phone with me (see: at gym), and by the time the police got there, the guy was long, long gone. However, the officer concurred that an ice cream sundae was an appropriate dinner, even if I was post-gym, so there is that.

The officer also commented on the luck of having a book in my hand – I have no scratches, no bleeding, nothing. I am perfectly fine, save for the broken nails and the fact that I’m going to be extremely sore the next few days.

In conclusion, clearly the next print-run of Better Than Well needs to include the banner: may actually save your life.