November 30, 2004

Dear Mr. Bush,

The asphalt was wet when I hit it, causing me to slide a few feet out into traffic. I shook my head to clear it and scrambled back to the crosswalk where I had, moments before, been crossing without incident. That's how it works sometimes, Mr. Bush: You're walking back to your car after stopping at the post office and then, suddenly, you're lying on the ground, knee throbbing, elbow aching, and you have no idea what went wrong. That's what happened to me today.

I should say outright that I'm fine so you won't worry--my knee is going to be sore for the next few days and my elbow is a little cut up, but I didn't hit my head and nothing's broken, so my long term prospects are good--but it was startling and strange and scary all the same. To be blinking in the rain, on the ground, not knowing quite how you ended up there is a disorienting feeling and not one I'd care to repeat soon.

I'd like there to be some kind of larger story I could tell you here. Some sort of "big think" moment that I could leave you with, where I turn being hit by a car into a metaphoric vision of your election or the Iraq war or some other moment that would leave you sitting in the Oval Office, looking at your e-mail and saying "Whoa, he's right." But you know what Mr. Bush? I don't have a bigger story to tell. All I have to leave you with is the knowledge that being hit by a car--being knocked to the ground by something much bigger, heavier, and more metallic than myself--has left me confused and scared and hurting. Sure, there are a lot of metaphors to pull from what happened, but sometimes being hit by a car is just being hit by a car.

To getting back up,



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