Wham! The surprisingly ever-present thin line between existence and non-existence


Eight days ago I crashed my bike into a car.   O so I’m told.  I have no memory of it.

I would later find out that I had fractured my skull in several places, bruised my brain, and filled the inside of my skull with blood.   “Severe concussion” was the diagnosis.

The last thing I remember is looking over m right shoulder as I crossed Whitney Avenue.  I saw no cars coming.   Then everything went black and silent.  The next thing I knew I was in an emergency room full of very busy doctors and nurses.   I had no clue as to what was happening.  All I knew is that my clothes were being taken off and a stiff brace was being clamped around my neck.  I could barely hear what anyone was saying, and had trouble speaking too.   My vision was blurred and my head felt like it was about to explode.

For the past eight days I have been unconscious most of the time.   It’s a strange way to live.   In fact, to call this “living” is to stretch the meaning of life to exteemes.  ”

The doctors asure me I will be fine in a few weeks, but have some rough days ahead.  Juar about everything in a  challenge, for sure.   Last night I dreamt I was my grandfather, the Gallego immigrant born in 1900.   His life was never the same after a car crash shattered his leg.   It was nice to see him again, but bewilderingly strange to be him, all of a sudden.


I’m all shook up, yes sir, yes ma’m/  Shanken to the core.  Wham. Poof. Snap. Here one second, gone the next.   ”Why was I so lucky?  I could have died, for sure.  Or I could have ended up like Christopher Reeve, paralyzed from the neck down.   God knows what else.   But I didin’t.

The day of my accident was the feast o the Guardian Angels, according to the calendar of the Catholic Church.  All I can say at this moment is simple enough;  Thanks, guys.  Good catch

I have lost a mountain of work and have over 900 emails piled up to deal with.  It may be a while bedore I can post anything here again.

In the meantime I recommend that Raul and his brother Fidel take nice long bike rides in Havnaa as frequently as possible., without any of those mariquita helmets.



14 thoughts on “Wham! The surprisingly ever-present thin line between existence and non-existence”

  1. Carlos glad to hear your okay. You remember the Cubans don’t wear sandals story only to the beach? We don’t ride bikes on the street either at least not in the U.S. I use to ride bike in Broward (Pine Island Trail) and of course Dade when I was a kid. Pero not on the street as an adult. Find yourself a good bike trail. When have one here in Georgia, the Silver Comet Trail. Actually I recommend that both Fidel and Raul die real soon cause-no es facil, God I hate that saying especially when I hear it from one of those newer Cuban arrivals. My parents didn’t say that,they just did what they have to do-work! When is book numero 3 coming?
    Regards, Ricardo, Richard, Richie, Ricky, Rich, ha ha! Hopefully you remembered yesterday- dead Che’ day, always a good day.

  2. What Ziva said. Carlos, think of it as being reborn to do bigger and better things–and be glad you don’t depend on “free” health care in Cuba. Be well.

  3. Dear Prof., the important thing is that you are okay! You are a fine chap and someone I admire. If your beautiful brain is undamaged then, forgetting the bike’s accident is not that bad after all, isn’t it? Best regard and take good care of yourself.

  4. I truly regret hearing this and hope you recover soon. Humberto Fontova had a similar bike accident years ago. That’s one reason why I bought a NordicTrack instead of a bike.

  5. Querido Carlos,

    Esperemos que tenga una rápida recuperación. Leemos fielmente sus articulos.
    Tiene que recuperarse pronto para cazar lagartijas.
    Desde un rincón de Texas Le deseamos de todo corazón Armando y liliana Quincoses

  6. ¡ño! Sorry to hear- but glad you picked good date and the Guardian Angels didn’t take day off on their holiday.
    Keep you in thought and prayer with best wishes for a complete and rapid recovery.

  7. Good grief. Very sorry to hear!–and i can relate. Sounds almost identical to mine in 2004. Except I ended up blind in one eye, deaf in one ear and with a titanium hip. You’re already on your way out of the mess. So keep hanging tough….you’re halfway there.

  8. Wow! I’m so glad to hear that despite the severity of your accident, you will make a speedy recovery! As you say, it could have been worst, God Forbid, like the tragic Christopher Reeve! We need you Prof. Eire. You are one of a handful of decent, principled academicians that has not sold out and become an apologist in order to fit in and get ahead! Your refusal to cave in to the NYT’s when they tried to get you to criticize the exile community is a classic for the books!

    Rest, relax, and feel better. The Babalu community cares for you! I will be sending prayers in your direction!

  9. I’m shocked at what happened and very glad that the Good Lord looked out for you. As someone who experienced a similar accident over three decades ago, alebit on foot and not on a two-wheeled conveyance, I’m praying for your speedy recovery. The best from all of us!

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