Published August 26, 2012 by rochellewisoff

Have you ever been accused of being absentminded or forgetful? Ever walk into a wall, or worse, another person because something behind you caught your eye? Yeah, me, too.

Among my many nicknames my favorite is probably “Etch” short for Etch-A-Sketch. One good shake and the screen goes blank.

Absent? Ha! I beg to differ. It’s not that I’m absent from my mind. On the contrary, I’m quite present. It’s those external surroundings that slip my notice while my mind is swirling with unwritten stories, novel rewrites or a wedding cake that requires my artistry next week.

What could very well be the best/worst example of my propensity for being in six places at once without touching terra firma happened about four years ago. After loading my car to head out for services I paged through my mental list. Change of clothes? Check. Bible? Check. Prayer shawl? Check.

Satisfied everything was in order I backed out of the garage. The next few minutes were so horror filled I still cringe at the memory. What I failed to check was my wide-open driver-side door.

I can still hear the rrrrripp as my pristine 2002 Saturn’s door panel wrenched from its foundation. My breathing came to gasping halt. I hit the brake and turned off the engine. For a few catatonic moments I just sat there, hoping it was only a nightmare. Then reality set in.

My husband’s cooler head prevailed. After he talked me down from my hysteria tree, he called our insurance agent. With the knowledge that repairs were covered with a minor deductable I felt somewhat better.

But the pain didn’t end there. It would be at least a week before I could get the car into the body shop. Naturally my poor car with its temporary trash bag and duct tape fix made me the butt of all jokes.

What can I say? I am my own anecdote. Image

Now it’s your turn. Have a similar out of body story to tell?


  • Ha. Ha. I can relate. I had to laugh at this picture above here. Is that you, or one of someone else? It looks kind of like you in a younger life. Ha. Just kidding. I have worried over every scratch or tiny nick in our car especially when we’ve gotten one brand new and Wayne and the salesman want me to test drive it. But, I declined at that point, and would be afraid to drive it at all, for fear of getting the first blemish on it. My aging vision literally has had me needing to restart the car when coming back from somewhere and not getting the car fully in to the garage, and cleared of the (garage) door. Then I had to back up some more or pull forward some more, so Wayne is going to get a tennis ball to hang up for me to know where to park it. Wait till you start to see little clouds and spots in front of you and you think they are cob webs and spiders and your eye doctor tells you it is cataracts and ‘floaters’ you have on your eye balls, not clouds or spiders you see. Its not fun getting older. Ha ha.


  • Hi Joyce,
    So far my eye doctor tells me my eyes are in great shape as far as no macular degeneration or cataracts. Of course I have to wear bifocals at this point and have so several years now. The upside is that I have done well with contact lenses.
    Yes, the photo is me at 17, back in the days when I ironed my hair.
    Jan and I both have little yellow balls hanging from the ceiling of our garage made specifically for the purpose of knowing how far to pull in. He got them at an auto supply. Of course I had to draw silly faces on them.
    Thanks for the reply!


  • Dear Rochelle,

    I’ve never done anything like that, so I guess I’m due. Just typing the previous sentence made me nervous. Where I work that sort of thing happens a lot, but we blame it on the altitude so we have an out.

    I loved this post. It reminds me that no matter how bad I think I’m getting, there’s always someone worse off. 🙂




    • Hi Doug,
      I only wish I could’ve found the picture of the car but apparently I never uploaded it from my phone (3 phones ago) to the computer. It was a sight for sure.

      As I said, I am my own anecdote.


  • MY pristine car disaster was the result of going through a “drive through zoo” in our BRAND NEW Buick Regal. Tom’s first NEW car, ever… We looked back, after hearing a strange noise & there were MONKEYS on the trunk lid! ONE was furiously gnawing on the spoiler & another was “scribbling” with a rock or something else equally hard & destructive on the trunk lid itself. I wasn’t the only one to sustain damage. A mini-van had the back windshield wiper torn off & someone else, an antenna. But the hilarity didn’t stop THERE!!! NO…. had to go to the body shop, (after facing & confessing to Tom) They filled out the paperwork & did the repair, but thenseforth, forevermore, they call me the “monkey lady”.

    Wish you had a pic of your duct taped door!


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