Nature & Environment

True Story: A Tree Fell on Me

I am invincible and will live forever.

I am a friend of the tree. I have written favorably, in general, about those that are living and have noted the passing of, and assault on, others. The trees on my own personal property, I can tell you, are well cared for. I go around most days exhaling carbon dioxide, which trees use for food. I do this free of charge to them.

So it is hard for me to imagine why the pecan tree you see here tried to kill me Saturday. Here is my side of the story:

With Notre Dame up on Ball State by a worrisomely thin eight-point margin at halftime, I decided a beer run would help the Irish’s mojo. No need to drive, as I live 1 mile from Goodfriend Package. Onto my bike I hopped and pedaled my way through the slick streets of my woodsy corner of East Dallas. You might have noticed that we got a fair amount of rain over the weekend. I got a block from my house when the tree, likely aided by the saturated soil on which it stood, made its move.

Riding close to the curb, I heard a loud crack. Before I had time to process the noise, my world turned green as the tree’s canopy enveloped me. I instinctively steered left, away from my attacker, and issued an expletive that would not make my mother proud. Only my superior reflexes and ridermanship kept me upright. Miraculously, I sustained nary a scratch.

Only when I stopped to take this picture did I see the man pulling a rolling red suitcase down the middle of the street. An odd sight, to be sure, but I was then so hopped up on adrenaline that he could have been riding an elephant, and I don’t think I would have blinked.

“Did you just see that?” I asked him.

He shook my hand and said only: “You are blessed.”

Thinking back on it now, I suppose his declaration could be interpreted either as a comment on my near miss or as a proclamation of my future prospects. But I’ve decided to go with the latter. I spent the remainder of Saturday and most of Sunday walking around the house, saying, “Nothing can kill me! I’m invincible!”

My wife has asked me to stop doing this. She thinks I’m jinxing myself. To which I say: nonsense.

Notre Dame won 24-16.

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