Wednesday, January 2, 2013

For Your Protection

It’s been almost 48 hours, and I wonder how many of you have actually stuck to your unoccupied New Years resolutions

It’s o.k., you don’t have to lie. Everyone else already gave up too.

For full effect, download “The Bicycle Song” by Queen and play at maximum volume throughout the duration of this post.

This afternoon I had the privilege of purchasing yet another helmet. That makes two dome-toppers for me in the last three weeks: one for the slopes, and one for the streets. You would think that I would be one to take a little bit more tender care of what my Dad called, “that lump of fat that sits on your neck like an under-popped pimple”, but alas, I still engage in some of the most collision-riddled activities known to man.

Ironic as it sounds while I was on my way to the bike shop to purchase this new helmet, I was two feet away from a crushing T-bone collision on the corner of Tabernacle and 1000 East, when a four-eyed Grandma trying to escape from her old folks home forgot what the term “right of way” meant and jutted out into the intersection like a runt puppy on Red Bull. For a brief moment as I caught my breath and dried my pants, I reflected if I should put on my current Specialized bike helmet lying in the back seat for precautionary measures to protect against senile nincompoops such as the one I had nearly collided with.

Helmets are the most failsafe, yet most idiotic inventions ever to have popped out of mankind’s head. We need them for all of the stupid things that we do, and yet we still do those stupid things once we feel the protection of a plastic molding clutching on to our noggins. I think Jerry Seinfeld put it best when he summed up mankind’s moronic tendencies in his own personal rant:

“There are many things that we can point to that prove that the human being is not smart. The helmet is my personal favorite. Now why did we invent the helmet? Well, because we were participating in many activities that were cracking our heads. We looked at the situation. We chose not to avoid these activities, but to just make little plastic hats so that we can continue our head-cracking lifestyles.”

If only I had heard his stand-up when I was nine years old, then perhaps I would have avoided those “head-cracking” activities, steered clear of a concussion-riddled career in youth football which would later cause hundreds of unconscious drooling sessions, and then bypassed completely a batch of doctors slicing open my scalp to remove a damaged portion of brain tissue. But hey, with a helmet I thought I could do anything. And at nine years old, who listens to reality anyway?

Thumbs pointed directly at my chest: “Not this guy!”

And so, rather than pay respect to rational, logical, and downright obvious solutions such as completely disallowing any head-to-hard surface contact at medium to large impact speeds, I again purchased a helmet this afternoon, simply for the most negligible protection that three-inches of plastic can provide as I shred the slopes or dodge oncoming traffic while locked into my bike’s pedals.

And for when the next time a blind Grandma nearly T-bones me in the middle of an intersection, I have something to beat her upside the head with.

What do you think?

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