How did you almost die?

jbutler

Royal Flush
Joined
Oct 28, 2014
Messages
10,669
Reaction score
10,627
i saw this story and thought holy shit i know how that feels. then it occurred to me that probably lots of people think they've come close to death at various points. what did you escape?

as for me:

age 5: jumped into pool unattended pool after one swimming lesson. dad saw me flailing out the window, ran out, and jumped in.

age 11: trying to hide the fact that i was chewing gum in mass (catholic school), it fell into my windpipe and i couldn't breathe. thinking that dying would be preferable to being punished, i opted to say nothing until i panicked and somehow miraculously hocked it up in what i thought was my dying breath.

age 15: swerving wildly in time with music on a desolate country road on the way to golf practice, i lost control and the car spun three times before wedging itself longways perfectly between two trees. the passenger and i were fine, but i broke the font axle on a relatively new BMW.

age 16: a group of us went swimming in a lake on a golf course in the middle of the night and the next day a guy shot and killed two alligators in the same lake. debatable how close to death i was here, i guess, but it was a bit disconcerting.

age 17: passed out on the median of I-85 outside atlanta at about 2am (longer story). woke up naked at dawn and had to find my clothes and hitch the last hour home. i actually did think i had died while i was passed out, but this might have been chemically induced.

age 20: driving a truck with a long, heavy trailer in northern virginia, i hit a patch of black ice causing the truck and trailer to begin spinning, the trailer eventually simply pulling itself parallel to the truck. incredibly, i just slid into a ditch with no harm to either the truck or trailer. a guy had to come pull me out since the snow was pretty deep, but once i was out of the ditch, i just drove home.

age 31: guy decided to merge directly into my car on a wet road, causing me to spin into the other lane and get broadsided by another car. thankfully, the other car was coming at the precise speed it was, allowing me to spin enough that he hit my passenger rather than driver side.

and of course the routinely stupid decisions i made: jumping from ludicrous heights into a rock quarry pool over the span of 6 or so years; drinking and driving when i was young and stupid, etc. looking at all the above, i'm starting to give more thought to the ideas of immortality, quantum suicide, and the multiverse.

anyway, how did you guys come close to death?

bonus drive-by truckers song with very appropriate lyrics:

Dropped acid, Blue Oyster Cult concert, fourteen years old
And I thought them lasers were a spider chasing me.
On my way home, got pulled over in Rogersville Alabama, with a half-ounce of weed and a case of Sterling Big Mouth.
My buddy Gene was driving, he just barely turned sixteen.
And I'd like to say, "I'm sorry", but we lived to tell about it
And we lived to do a whole lot more crazy, stupid shit.

And I never saw Lynyrd Skynyrd but I sure saw Molly Hatchet
With .38 Special and the Johnny Van Zant Band.

One night when I was seventeen, I drank a fifth of vodka on an empty stomach, then drove over to a friend's house
And I backed my car between his parents' Cadillacs without a scratch.
Then crawled to the back door and slithered through the key hole, and sneaked up the stairs
And puked in the toilet.
I passed out and nearly drowned but his sister, DD, pulled me out.

 

daschuck77

Pair
Joined
Nov 4, 2014
Messages
214
Reaction score
246
Location
Hampton Roads
JB, No wonder you like cats so much!

I guess the closest I came was being left alone in the car for a brief minute at the tender age of 4 as my mom went back in the grocery store for something she forgot (hey, it was the early 80's) Mom, a smoker left her lighter in the car. I grabbed her lighter from the console and promptly set the paper bag of groceries in the back seat on fire. I panicked but finally extinguished the fire with my stuffed Garfield cat and the remaining contents of my capri sun juice. Cream leather seats were charred and now fruit punch colored. Mom was both horrified and furious with herself for leaving me alone for just moments and her perceived screw up by my dad trumped mine and spared me a certain death by his hands.
 

slisk250

Straight Flush
Joined
Dec 9, 2014
Messages
7,678
Reaction score
12,660
Location
Rocky Mountain High
Class 3 concussion racing motocross. I still do not remember much of what happened that week. The bikes were sold ten years ago.
 

daschuck77

Pair
Joined
Nov 4, 2014
Messages
214
Reaction score
246
Location
Hampton Roads
God concussions are not fun. Even the mildest of ones. Ouch. Hope there are have been no long term problems and you are functioning within normal operating parameters.
 

pltrgyst

Straight Flush
Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 29, 2013
Messages
9,638
Reaction score
13,565
Location
FL
1. 2005: Tasting durian.

2. 1966: Army jump school. WTF am I doing here?

3. 1966: Going off my Honda 305 Superhawk at 60 MPH when a rear wheel spoke snapped on the New Jersey Turnpike -- with no helmet on. Woke up in the hospital.

4. 1968-70: 26 months in the central highlands of Vietnam, all expenses paid by my rich Uncle Sam.

5. 1991: Having a large tree fall across the race track at the end of the Jefferson Circuit straight, right in front of my spec Miata at Summit Point Raceway.

6. 1994: Having the bottom of another Formula Ford pass about three inches over my head in turn 1 at Summit Point Raceway. I took this as a sign that it might be time to give up serious racing...eventually.

7. 1990-present: Various serious threats from my wife, some related to casinos and poker.

-- Larry
 
Last edited:

grandgnu

A new beginning
Joined
Oct 28, 2014
Messages
1,523
Reaction score
338
Location
Tampa FL
Great thread idea Jack, I've got a few, all from driving:


DEATH WISH 1 I'm on Rt 2 in MA (2 lane "highway") and I'm passing a big rig. Some idiot jumps in front of the big rig from an on-ramp that I can't see. What I can see is suddenly this big rig is veering left into my lane (to avoid the car that merged in front of him). I, of course, speed up to get out of the way of the big rig, only to have the idiot that jumped in front of him jump into my lane to avoid getting hit. Being young I still had pretty fast reflexes, and expertly maneuvered my 1986 maroon ford escort like Han Solo doing the Kessel Run, swerving between the big rig and the idiot to come out the other side unscathed.

DEATH WISH 2 It's Friday night around 8pm and I'm heading out for the night to hit the "happening" city of Leominster, using Rt 2. There's a winter storm, but I will not be denied my recreation dammit! I'm doing only 45 in the 55 zone because of the weather. I crest a hill on the highway and notice up ahead of me is a car on the side of the road with a statey that has his lights on behind him. I continue at my leisurely pace, only to hit the patch of ice that guy must've hit. This flips my escort around and suddenly I'm traveling backwards down the highway. Fortunately there were no other cars around me at the time. But as I look in my rear view mirror I see my car is heading straight for the cops car! I'm saying "oh please don't let me hit this statey!" and I whip the wheel, causing my car to turn sideways on the highway and slide to a stop. Meanwhile, the traffic behind me is starting to crest the hill and sees the mayhem ahead of them and they all start slamming on their breaks and then slam into one another. I'm frantically turning the key to try and start my car but it won't start (because it stalled out but it's still in drive, doh!) But again, I escape unscathed as the statey backs his car up the hill to assist the motorists who hit each other.


DEATH WISH 3 This is a story I'm ashamed of. I was hanging out with friends and had zero plans of going out, so was drinking my ghetto beverage of choice (Mad Dog 20/20, it's cheap and it does down easy, which coincidentally, is how I like my women HI-YOOOO!) Anyhoo, I get myself shit-faced and suddenly I want to go to the club, so my friends and I hit the local one. Problem is that it's only around 8:30 or 9pm, so the place is just not happening yet. I'm bored out of my skull and want to drive to another club that's 15 minutes away. My friends realize I probably shouldn't be driving and one of them starts asking me for my keys, but I blow him off telling him I'm fine. Meanwhile, in my head I'm thinking "these motherfuckers are trying to spoil my fun!" so I tell them I have to go pee. Then I scoot out the back and drive to the club by myself! All I have are a few images from the club, people I know there, but that's it, that's all I remember. I was black-out drunk. I wake up on a Sunday morning in my car off Rt 140. My car is surrounded by trees and is backwards facing back up the hill towards the road. It's been raining all week, so the hill is all muddy and it took forever for me to get up and back onto the road. Fortunately I didn't hurt anyone else. That's the only time I've ever gotten drunk like that and since then (close to 20 years ago) I've always taken it easy with liquor and rarely drink.
 

Jeff

Full House
Moderator
Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2013
Messages
4,813
Reaction score
7,629
Location
Chicagoland
very young, maybe 5 or 6 - almost drowned just out of reach of the side of the pool. i can still remember the experience clearly.

age 17-18 - Going to a concert, car I was in (with 6 other friends) drifted and almost hit a overpass concrete column close to the highway, swerved just in time after someone yelled at the driver. I remember thinking...holy shit we almost died (for about 1.8 seconds), then getting over it quickly.

after the St. Louis/KC world series - single room in college, drank too much, friends took me home, put me in bed and left me alone. Didn't choke to death, as I must have been sleeping on my side or stomach although I don't know because I didn't wake up for a day and a half.

I thought I was going to die when I had gall stones at 28.
 

Mr Tree

Straight Flush
Joined
Oct 29, 2014
Messages
7,964
Reaction score
12,229
Location
Roswell, GA
Age 15 - had an in grown hair and went to a doc in the box who cut it open and pulled a ton of pus out. Apparently while he had it open he somehow spread a staff infection through my leg. Went home thinking everything was all right but couldn't get to sleep as I was too hot. Went to the bathroom and realized my entire leg from my knee to my waist was glowing red and red hot to touch. At the emergency room they put me on IV antiobiotics and told me if I'd ignored it and went to sleep I wouldn't have woken up.

Age 21 - in college and after a night of work at a restaurant. The electrical system in my car short circuited and went TOTALLY dead on the highway back home. Assholes in traffic wouldn't let me over and I ended up stuck in the middle lane at night with no power or lights on. This was in the 90's and I didn't have a cell phone. Took over 40 minutes before a cop showed up and I was nearly hit by cars that didn't see me until they were 30 or so feet away more times than I remember. Too much traffic to ever have a chance to get out and hoof it to the side. Once a semi truck came so close to hitting me that the wind from its passing partially pushed me into another lane.
 

mike32

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2013
Messages
3,027
Reaction score
4,878
Location
South Lyon, Michigan
Knowing DD I am certain it did not happen in Detroit proper, in fact I'll wager it was in Ann Arbor.

When I was about 15 we discovered how to make pipe bombs. We advanced slowly and finally made a one in a 1.5 diam brass pipe that we could not get to pack properly. My friend and I decided to try and pack it by flattening the loaded pipe with a sledgehammer, pounding away on it for quite some time. It went fine and we ended up blowing up a 55 gallon drum. Later a friend lost a finger with the same formula and we found it exploded due to pressure alone. Ours did not explode until lit, but was probably plenty powerful to kill us both.

When I was around 20 I dove off a boat head first while drunk into approx. 2.5 foot deep water. Head nailed the bottom and I just floated there for a few seconds before realizing I could still move. Had a headache and sore neck for days.

Had a blackout drunk driving incident in high school also that taught me a lesson. Nothing actually happened. I just woke up with my Pinto in the driveway not knowing how it got there.
 

rowlin

Flush
Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 1, 2014
Messages
2,446
Reaction score
2,423
Location
PNW
Four instances immediately come to mind, though I am sure there have been more.

First, walking along a train track at 15, wearing a Walkman (or some such thing) and looking up to see a speeding train coming at me. It was tens of yards away from me when I saw it, so the incident was not as dramatic as train-dodging scenes in the movies, but I am very thankful to have been walking in the direction that allowed me to see it coming.

Secondly, losing control of my car in bad weather and sliding off an embankment. I am very fortunate it was in a forested area as a tree prevented the car from plunging into a canyon.

Thirdly, crossing a street and checking to the left at the last second. A speeding bus had just gunned it to get through a yellow light and would have squarely plowed me into oblivion. This one was pretty close - I nearly had a foot off the curb at the time I remembered the whole "look both ways" thing. I believe I was also wearing headphones at the time.

Fourth, driving on a two lane road with my sister-in-law, a car was coming really fast in the opposite direction to pass another vehicle. The road was raised, so swerving to the right could have been problematic, though probably less of a danger than a 60 mph vs 45 mph head-on collision.
 

mike32

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2013
Messages
3,027
Reaction score
4,878
Location
South Lyon, Michigan
Also on Memorial day in 2004 we had just arrived at a friends cabin and all the kids immediately went swimming. I saw my youngest jump in off a raft out of the corner of my eye, I had just cracked my first beer of the weekend. I ran to the beach and jumped in fully clothed and saw him looking up at me underwater with his eyes open, boys and girls playing around him oblivious. I yanked him out and I am certain I saved his life, thank God.
 

detroitdad

Royal Flush
Joined
Nov 6, 2014
Messages
26,700
Reaction score
38,865
Location
Michigan
Detroit, dead giveaway

Panama, summer of 88.

couple of other incidents as well. Getting shot at was the most intense. Actually, searching the jungle after the firefight was more intense than the actual firefight (canine handler btw).
 

Ben

Full House
Joined
Oct 29, 2014
Messages
2,530
Reaction score
2,722
Location
"The Sticks"
16 years old - 1 month after getting my license. I'm visiting my grandparents and my aunt has me take her car to go around the corner to Taco Bell and get some food. Said vehicle happens to be a 1995 Saturn cheapo (a car not exactly known for its build quality - this becomes important.)

I get the food and trying to get back, I go to take a left in the intersection of Golf Rd. and Higgins Rd. in Schaumburg, IL (any Chi-town burbs locals know this one - it's YUUUUUUGE, and awful.) Traffic light turns yellow then red and I am in the intersection, so I gotta get out of there. There's like 17 cars deep stopped in each of the near 2 lanes, so I go. Apparently somehow the far right lane in the oncoming direction (which I can't even see due to the 34 parked cars) is not only clear, but there's a guy going about 60 trying to gun the light. So all I see is a flash and BAM!!! and suddenly I am sitting there with a dead car and the front 18 inches of the car SHEARED CLEAN OFF. Not just the bumper, everything - the headlights and half the front frame were lying on the ground in pieces. The car didn't move, didn't spin, anything - just died in the exact spot it was hit with a significant portion of it now missing. If this guy had been going a hair slower and hit the passenger side broadside, I certainly would have been gone (or if I hadn't been in a vehicle made out of Pepsi-grade aluminum...)

The Taco Bell that was in the back seat was mangled, but still edible 3 hours later when I finally got back.
 

grandgnu

A new beginning
Joined
Oct 28, 2014
Messages
1,523
Reaction score
338
Location
Tampa FL
Sorry Ben, I'm just picturing the Saturn having a sunroof and you're driving with your head sticking out of it like a giraffe! (don't hate me, people picture me driving looking through the steering wheel to see the road!) :p
 

moose

Full House
Joined
Nov 4, 2014
Messages
3,990
Reaction score
7,184
Location
chip harvesting
When I was 12 or so my Dad fell asleep at the wheel on I-75 and drifted in the ditch, the car spun and we went completely across the highway and spun into the opposite ditch. Probably did two complete 360s across the highway. Only damage was a dent in the front quarter panel from shearing off a road sign.

When I was 19, I came up over a hill during rush hour on the 401 in Toronto. Some moron had stopped dead with a flat tire in fast lane. There was no room to swerve due to the heavy traffic. I hit the guy so hard my car spun 180 and I hit him a second time going backwards and totalled both ends of the car. Then I got to watch all the traffic behind me scream to a stop just short of crushing me to death. Fun.

Around the same time my girlfriend (now wife) was driving and I was the passenger. The light turned green just before we reached the intersection but some drunk ran the light. By the tiniest of margins we t-boned the drunk, rather than he t-boning us, which would have nailed me on the passenger side. It sheared the front end of the car off and spun us 180. The impact deflected the drunk head on into a hydro pole and the drunk and his passenger were taken away by ambulance with numerous injuries. We walked away. I still reflect on the infinitesimal amount of difference of speed or timing that had us t-bone the drunk, rather than the other way around, and it was over 20 years ago. Shudder.

After those two incidents I prefer not to drive if possible.

About age 20 I was mountain biking, pre-helmet days, flipped over the handlebars and landed on my head. As I cartwheeled over onto my back I stretched the muscles and ligaments in my neck so badly I missed 3 days of work because I was unable to lift my chin off my chest. It was a brutal walk out of the woods to the car too. I must have been this close to breaking my neck.

On my honeymoon, I left my wife sleeping on the beach in Barbados. Bored, I decided to go dive into the surf. The waves drove me head first into the sand, almost snapping my neck a second time, then the undertow started to drag me and I barely figured out which way was up and made it to the surface as my lungs were about to burst. I can only imagine my wife waking up and not being able to find me as my body floated out to sea.
 
Last edited:

Ben

Full House
Joined
Oct 29, 2014
Messages
2,530
Reaction score
2,722
Location
"The Sticks"
Sorry Ben, I'm just picturing the Saturn having a sunroof and you're driving with your head sticking out of it like a giraffe! (don't hate me, people picture me driving looking through the steering wheel to see the road!) :p

Simpsons-Tall-Car-Guy-1317414398.jpg
 

Jeff

Full House
Moderator
Supporting Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2013
Messages
4,813
Reaction score
7,629
Location
Chicagoland
intersection of Golf Rd. and Higgins Rd. in Schaumburg, IL (any Chi-town burbs locals know this one - it's YUUUUUUGE, and awful.) .

This intersection is always mentioned as one of the most dangerous (based on accidents) in the state of Illinois. About 12 miles from my house.
 

bergs

Full House
Joined
Oct 28, 2014
Messages
4,448
Reaction score
5,255
1) When I was 6 years old, directly in the middle of the big snowstorm of '78, I ended up with a 109 degree fever as a result of untreated strep throat which had turned into full blown rheumatic fever. Our driveway was a dirt one lane 1 mile road, and it had 3 feet of snow on it so the ambulance couldn't get down the driveway. My dad worked at the local hospital and was on the phone with doctors there. They tried putting me in an ice bath (didn't help) and several other things until out of desperation they stripped me naked and put me in the snow. I remember the paramedics being at the edge of our property walking through hip deep snow and my mother screaming and crying, and that's about it. Don't remember anything about the hospital. From what my mother told me after I became an adult, there were serious concerns that I'd have long-lasted effects, so maybe that explains the way I play poker. Ended up putting a hole in my heart that grew over as I got older so no long term complications, luckily.

2) Ended up in a situation in high school where I had 3 friends pointing rifles at 4 guys behind me holding handguns, and I was stuck in the middle. Longest 30 foot walk of my life to get into the truck with the 3 friends. Don't play basketball in the 'hood, kids.

3) Almost got ran over by a crazy bitch in a car outside the University of Hartford one year after I graduated. Visiting my sister, some chick gets mad at my friends and I, we make some drunken jokes at her expense, and when we leave she decides to run me down. I saw her at the last moment and sorta hopped over the edge of the fender. It nicked me and spun me around and put me 5 or 6 feet down the road but God looks after idiots and drunks and that night I was both. After she stopped the car, I had a discussion with her, in the sense that I (in the pinnacle of maturity) punched out both windshields and all 4 windows.

4) The time a fellow student walked into my Junior High School with a TEC-9 and started hosing the place down.

5) The time I fell asleep driving home on Route 9 in Connecticut returning from a friends house to go take a mid-term at college. Woke up 15 on a snowy morning 15 feet from the intersection of 2 guardrails when the highway split. Completely luckboxed it - the plows had been through and had created a triangle of snow that formed a large snowback and I popped up on that before the guardrails. Tore the complete shit out of the bottom of the car - essentially totaled it - but I came through without a scratch.

Sometimes I look back at my 20s and just think "Jesus, I was a moron....". There were other situations my friends and I got into as well but they aren't as interesting.
 

manamongkids

Full House
Joined
Feb 25, 2014
Messages
4,398
Reaction score
3,480
Location
Usa
1) When I was 6 years old, directly in the middle of the big snowstorm of '78, I ended up with a 109 degree fever as a result of untreated strep throat which had turned into full blown rheumatic fever. Our driveway was a dirt one lane 1 mile road, and it had 3 feet of snow on it so the ambulance couldn't get down the driveway. My dad worked at the local hospital and was on the phone with doctors there. They tried putting me in an ice bath (didn't help) and several other things until out of desperation they stripped me naked and put me in the snow. I remember the paramedics being at the edge of our property walking through hip deep snow and my mother screaming and crying, and that's about it. Don't remember anything about the hospital. From what my mother told me after I became an adult, there were serious concerns that I'd have long-lasted effects, so maybe that explains the way I play poker. Ended up putting a hole in my heart that grew over as I got older so no long term complications, luckily.

2) Ended up in a situation in high school where I had 3 friends pointing rifles at 4 guys behind me holding handguns, and I was stuck in the middle. Longest 30 foot walk of my life to get into the truck with the 3 friends. Don't play basketball in the 'hood, kids.

3) Almost got ran over by a crazy bitch in a car outside the University of Hartford one year after I graduated. Visiting my sister, some chick gets mad at my friends and I, we make some drunken jokes at her expense, and when we leave she decides to run me down. I saw her at the last moment and sorta hopped over the edge of the fender. It nicked me and spun me around and put me 5 or 6 feet down the road but God looks after idiots and drunks and that night I was both. After she stopped the car, I had a discussion with her, in the sense that I (in the pinnacle of maturity) punched out both windshields and all 4 windows.

4) The time a fellow student walked into my Junior High School with a TEC-9 and started hosing the place down.

5) The time I fell asleep driving home on Route 9 in Connecticut returning from a friends house to go take a mid-term at college. Woke up 15 on a snowy morning 15 feet from the intersection of 2 guardrails when the highway split. Completely luckboxed it - the plows had been through and had created a triangle of snow that formed a large snowback and I popped up on that before the guardrails. Tore the complete shit out of the bottom of the car - essentially totaled it - but I came through without a scratch.

Sometimes I look back at my 20s and just think "Jesus, I was a moron....". There were other situations my friends and I got into as well but they aren't as interesting.

University of Hartford, eh? Alum?
 

jbutler

Royal Flush
Joined
Oct 28, 2014
Messages
10,669
Reaction score
10,627
Couldn't wait for Bergs reply. Sadly was expecting better...

should have been waiting for guinness's too. i can approximate his, however:

age 18: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 19: said something to some guy when i was high and almost got stabbed
age 20: said something to some guy when i was high and almost got stabbed
age 21: said something to some guy when i was high and almost got stabbed
age 22: said something to some guy when i was high and almost got stabbed
age 23: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 24: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 25: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 26: said something to some guy when i was high and almost got stabbed
age 27: said something to some guy when i was sober and almost got stabbed
age 28: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 29: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 30: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 31: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 32: said something to some guy when i was high and almost got stabbed
age 33: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 34: said something to some guy when i was high and almost got stabbed
age 35: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 36: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 37: said something to my wife when i was sober and almost got stabbed
age 38: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 39: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 40: said something to some guy when i was high and almost got stabbed
age 41: said something to some guy when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
age 42: said something to sports bettah joe when i was drunk and almost got stabbed
 
Top Bottom