WITH A CAMERA © Jeffrey Ball

Broken bones

Posted in Uncategorized by jeffballphoto on January 6, 2010

I broke my collar bone yesterday snowboarding. I had been listening to “Radiohead” while riding all that day and it continued to play through the earbud in my helmet until I got into the ambulance. I was riding with some friends and we got into a pile-up sort of crash most of the cause was just getting going to fast. There were several people involved, friends of mine that I have known since elementary school. Two of us had very similar breaks the other guys was much worse than mine. When I crashed I began flipping hard but with a feeling of sincere relief, as I had very nearly avoided that friend who had fallen in front of me. My vision blurred to white and brown, I became so scared of hitting a tree. Smacking the snow hard over and over four or five times, the crunching sound of my helmet smacking and grinding into the snow woven with the surreal sounds of Thom Yorke and his band. I found myself on my back, bathing in the quietest moment I have ever lived as my senses struggled to regain balance, and Thom was between songs. I sat up and pulled the broken glass’s off of my face they had cut into my skin on the left side near the temple, where the arm of the glass’s had broken. The left side where I was beginning to realize that I was broken. My shoulder hurt, a burning kind of pain, it felt as though my shoulder’s socket was sitting on my chest. Hunched over I reached my arm into the many layers of jackets that I was wearing and down to my skin, my hand was cold. I felt it and knew immediately what had happened. A notch the depth of two of my fingers sat in the center of my clavicle, I could feel the ragged edge of the broken bone, though not breaking the skin the edge felt sharp, jagged like the leftovers of a broken window. “Fake plastic trees” was just starting to play. I began to sit up and could feel the two pieces of my collar bone spreading out, almost falling into correct position. I looked up and saw my father running towards me, “Holy shit, Jeff, are you OK!” “Yeah dad, I think I broke my collar bone.” “Alright, I’m gonna go check on this other guy, he looks real bad.” My sister came next, she took my hand and we sat there together, she was beautiful. It was peaceful and honest as life could ever be.

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