Thursday, August 27, 2015

Well, That Was Good Timing!

So my new smartphone got to go out for it's first bike ride today, and it was a real lifesaver - literally!

I took it out a few times, curious to see if I could find any wifi hotspots along the bike trail - and I actually did. I'm still a fumbling fool with it, but it's slowly getting better.

I took a few pictures along the way... I'd say the quality is not half bad...

The Bear Creek Open Space
At the top of Bear Creek Dam (Mt. Carbon)
The "Ice Water Palace" - in other words, the outhouse and water station
at the top of Mt. Carbon (which is a long, hard climb)
My "bike tattoo" I think I need to clean my chain!
So on to the lifesaver part...

As CatMan and I were riding home, we came upon a guy by the side of the path who was covered in blood and had obviously had a really bad crash. We stopped to see if he was OK, and he swore that he was... but honestly he didn't really look OK.

He wasn't wearing a helmet and by the looks of it he had fallen and hit his head pretty badly.

He had a big gash on his head, and couldn't even remember what had happened. I kept asking if I could call an ambulance for him and he kept saying that he was fine.

But CatMan just kept asking him questions and talking to him, and it became increasingly clear that he needed help. He kept asking the same questions over and over, and when he tried to stand up and almost passed out I decided to stop asking for permission and informed him that I was calling 911.

Thanks to the smartphone's GPS, they were able to pinpoint our exact location on the bike path, and the ambulance got there in less than 5 minutes.

But here's the disconcerting part. This accident hadn't just happened right before we came upon the scene. From the looks of the guy's injuries it had been at least half an hour or so, and from the pool of blood on the path it looked like he'd been laying there, probably unconscious, for a while.

Now this is a popular path, and it was full of people. In the few minutes that we were standing there helping the guy a whole pile of people gathered to see what was going on.

So why had nobody stopped before us to help him? I mean it's possible that they did and when he said that he was OK they just went on their merry way... but what about all that time he was lying on the ground? Did people just ride around him?!? Maybe they thought he was a drunk who had passed out or something?

Anyhow, I hope the fellow is gonna be OK - I don't even know who he was (other than that his name was Dave). In fact, I'm not entirely sure that he himself knew who he was (other than that his name was Dave!)

It's sorta ironic don't you think? I mean, part of the reason I got the smartphone was to have the GPS so people could find us on the bike path if there was ever an emergency, and the very first time I take it out...

So let this be a reminder to all of you...


'nuff said.


  1. Wow, talk about timing. I hope you never need the GPS feature again, but so glad you had it this time. I'm guessing that others did try to help Dave, but he convinced them he was okay, so they moved along.

    1. I know... crazy, isn't it? Although, truth be told, we were in a section of the trail that is near major roads, so I probably could have talked them through it on my old dumb phone, but still... it was quite an inaugural phone call!

  2. Good Morning. I found you via this mornings A-Z website post. Glad to have found you! ~ Rhondi

  3. I think Catman is a smart guy to not just take "I'm ok" for an answer. You two are great! Hope Dave is ok--and I swear, my family and I are the only people in our town who use helmets, but the consequences can be scary if you don't (too many years of treating head injuries for me to change my mind ... my kids will be helmet geeks but their brains will remain intact!).

    Your Viking helmet cat pic is too funny--my kids made our cat a Viking helmet a few years ago so he could "dress" for Halloween and the picture reminds me of that!

    1. Well, CatMan worked in a psychiatric hospital many years ago, so he knows a few things about head injuries - still, the amount of blood alone should have told the average Joe that something was wrong...

      And I'm trying to imagine any of my cats tolerating a Halloween costume. I had one cat when I was a kid who would let me do stuff like that, but the rest would see it as an invitation for some serious arm shredding!

  4. I feel like this post ties in well to my Daily Prompt for today... hahaha

    1. Ha! Sorry I didn't have a cat related post for you! :-)

  5. Wow, nice story!

    I admit, I don't always wear my helmet ... only when I'm biking or roller skating.

    I have thought that if I turn into one of those old people who's at risk of falling and breaking a hip (partly because I'll have weak bones, but partly because I'll have trouble balancing and will be tripping over rugs all the time), I might really start wearing a helmet all the time (except in bed). Hey, people accept eccentricity at that age, and if you're going to be eccentric, increasing safety is a good way. (Obviously a helmet wouldn't protect my hips, but it still seems like a good idea for people who are falling down stairs and such.)

    1. Ha! When I was first working at the music school my job was answering phones at the front desk - the office was a tiny space and everything was done by hand - literally we recorded things in notebooks and kept the money in a shoebox! Anyhow, this system meant that there was a lot of reaching around for the appropriate notebook yadda, yadda, yadda. So one day I was working with another guy and both of us reached for something in opposite directions and pow! We banged heads pretty good! Helmets would have come in handy for that situation! :-)

    2. Ouch! Who knew sharing notebooks could be dangerous? :-)

  6. Wow what a way to convince you that the decision to get a smart phone was the right one. You an CatMan remind me of motorcyclists who treat other bikers as family and go out of their way to help any in need. Now we just need to extend these actions to the world at large which would have been helpful to Dave before you and CatMan showed up.

    I can't help but be amazed by Denver through your pictures. The image I have of Denver is the one from 1982 when I decided to visit and saw nothing but winding freeways ahead of me. I wish i had gotten off the highway to see these parts of Denver.

    1. There totally is an unwritten rule that cyclists should look out for each other. You know, I think that part of the reason that nobody had stopped for this guy before was (sadly enough) what he was wearing. Because Denver has such an extensive system of bike trails, a lot of homeless people tend to congregate there. It's not uncommon to see the homeless riding around on bikes even.

      Anyhow, had Dave been wearing "sports clothes" or something that screamed "I'm a middle class guy out for a bike ride" I think people would have jumped in to help him. But he was wearing a baggy shirt and baggy shorts, and even though he was a pretty clean cut fellow, the fall had muddied him up and the dried blood on his face would have been easy to mistake for an unshaven scruff if you just glanced at him. Plus, he was wearing a baseball cap, so the head injury wasn't completely obvious on first glance - it would have been easy to mistake his dazed demeanor for drunkenness.

      It's a sad commentary on our society that certain folks are deemed worth helping and other...well... not so much.

      Anyhow, I'm so sorry that you didn't get to see the beautiful parts of Denver! If you ever make it out this way again, I'll give you the full tour! I avoid the freeways like the plague, so I tend to forget that they're even there! Of course, there is about a 100 yard section of the bike path that runs right along I-25 - with only a fence separating them. If we happen to hit that stretch at rush hour, I always get a perverse sort of joy out of zipping past on my bike while people are sitting stuck in traffic on the I-25 parking lot!


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