The Adventures in Peter Land

A brief and sometimes preposterous visit into the landscape of my life that only
humor can explain, fix or obscure. Just to let you know, I sometimes may exaggerate
a detail or two that may help to color the story. Although some details may never
make it into my stories I make up for that by inventing better ones.

I began this series a decade ago and have resurrected it in February 2011. I will be posting the oldest first so notice the date at the top. But the following is the current one.

It’s long overdue–three years since the last published chapter but now its the latest chapter of Adventures in Peter Land

Adventures in Peter Land chapter 20  -Feb. 2011
Survival is Like Wetting Your Pants in Winter.

I was almost killed by a semi the other day on Lake Cook Road and Route 53 (Hicks Road). Chizuko–that was the day that I met you at the Starbucks. It was good to see you. I started to stop for a yellow (like we are supposed to!) while driving east bound on Lake Cook and a fully loaded semi behind me began to jack-knife since he was going too fast when he hit the brakes. Having been in six accidents in my life –four collisions into my rear end– not counting two rollovers (they were more fun than pain–and interestingly I was a passenger both times and each time I was asleep or nodding out, which may explain why I cant fall asleep in a moving car. Since we are on the subject of vehicular gymnastics, back in 1974 I had a little very light Maverick and had to swerve to avoid hitting a kid that ran out and my left wheel hit a center median which in those years had an incline that lifted my car up onto two wheels and I drove James Bond fashion for a block. I weighed very little then. Although my wife at the time, Patti, who was on the passenger side, found it exciting, her look told me that going through the light coming up wouldn’t have the same appreciation so I dropped the car back to four wheels. Personally I didn’t think it was a problem since I had the green, but hey, marriage requires compromise. Being twenty you know what happened, we went back and did it again. Second time I wasn’t able to be up for so long. I was willing for a third try but, once again, marriage requires compromise … so I waited until I was alone. We all have secrets from our spouse. Subsequently It wouldn’t work without her as a passenger and just caused the car to bounce badly so I gave up. She was very self-conscious about her weight so I found it difficult to explain I need her body in the passenger seat to help the car pivot up. It makes sense in terms of physics but, some things bet lost in translation. Come to think of it I could have tried to lift the right side using my bodyweight as a pivot! Why didn’t I think of that then? Ah youth–Its only when you get older that you have perspective from experience. Where was I? Oh yes, death.) I am always hyper-vigilant when driving and saw the oncoming truck behind me jack-knifing in the rearview so I hit the gas to add distance, which worked and I avoided being pancaked. However this put me into the middle of the intersection when the left turn lane drivers were moving. The Northwest Chicago suburb drivers are very … motivated. They didn’t like me there in the way. I was able to back up enough to allow traffic to move but was still too far out and earned ‘the finger’ many times from drivers who had no idea why I was there. Just another inconsiderate fool who was in their way. I want you all to know–I am not inconsiderate. Under those circumstances surviving something like that is very much like peeing your pants in winter. Its a warm feeling that spreads slowly but it doesn’t last very long.


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