These little seizures I am having today remind me of a time when I was about 11 or 12 and was riding my 1970 Honda dirt bike across a field of clover. The clover was so green and lush that as it crushed beneath my tires it soaked them with its juices, and I began a slow rotation – the bike turning counter clockwise while I was still moving forward. Like the earth spinning on its own axis, but all the while screaming through space in its orbit around the sun. I wasn’t alarmed; in fact it was a pleasantly surreal experience. I only snapped out of it when it occurred to me that when this patch of clover ended, and the dirt resumed my lazy spin would come to a sudden end. Using my hips I spun the bike back straight and throttled out of the clover. Today with me having the light seizures, nothing dramatic or too stressful, I have that feeling like I am on a slow slide back in the clover. The only difference is that I can’t throttle my way out of this one, but I have had time to learn that sometimes you just have to sit back and see where the ride takes you.
This writing about motorcycles and seizures reminds me of another time where these two different subjects seem to cross paths. Most of East Texas is fairly flat, lots of trees, and places where run offs have carved their way into the earth, but nothing too crazy. Leave it to me to find the one cliff in Henderson County. I liked to take my bike and see how fast I could weave it between the trees in the woods. If that sounds stupid don’t blame me; blame George Lucas instead because I got the idea from Return of the Jedi and the speeder bike chase on the forest moon of Endor. You can cover quite a bit of country dodging between trees like that, and after awhile you tend to lose your perception of distance because you are focusing so much on whatever tree happens to be right in front of you. I suddenly found out that what I took to be large bushes right up ahead where actually the tops of trees – I found this out when the ground had suddenly disappeared from beneath me. I had pulled a Wile E. Coyote and run off the cliff – and I had always thought that cartoons were just make believe. Sort of makes me wonder what would actually happen if you strapped an Acme rocket to your back and tried to ride it Slim Pickens style. The drop off was probably only about thirty feet on a slope, but it looked like the Grand Canyon from where I sat. The saving grace was that the whole area was so choked with pines, and also that I wasn’t moving that fast so I was able to just grab on to the trees, and never made the fall. My bike wasn’t so lucky, but even it fared better than I would have thought. Probably because it was mostly held together with duct tape anyway from other motorly escapades – nothing destroys duct tape. I didn’t get away scot-free though because I’m allergic to pine trees. I might have been hugging on to those trees at that moment thinking they were the best thing on earth, but I was cussing them later when I broke out in a rash. How does this relate to seizures? I suppose having the ground go out from underneath you all of a sudden probably relates to a lot things in life actually.
You know this may sound crazy, especially considering the stories I just told, but I do miss riding. I think I could ride again, even with the blindness, I’m sure I could work out some system or find an area that was open enough, but it wouldn’t be the same. Anything I did now would have to have controls and limitations of some kind – be extremely well thought out and planned for it to be safe. I suppose it is that freedom that I really miss; just being able to jump on the seat throttle up and tear out, and go wherever I want – even if it is someplace that’s childish like riding through a clover field or slipping in between the trees. Come to think of it whenever I was in New York in the back of a cab I sort of had the feeling like we were dodging and weaving around like our lives depended on it. Perhaps the next time I miss riding I should just head back up the Big Apple and hail a cab.