Monday, April 01, 2019

Welcome to April Foolishness: 2019 Edition! – Mark the Headbanger

            You can’t have a real celebration without having some skin in the game, they say.  In my case, it’s not skin, but blood . . .

            In April of 1971 I was fifteen years old.  I was a member of the UMYF (United Methodist Youth Fellowship), and we had a meeting every Wednesday night which was called Bible Study, but often our talk was general “stuff,” some of which was spiritual.

            As was my wont, I had brung a record from home, to listen on the “big sound” of the console stereo in our church’s Youth Room.  It was Wednesday, April 14.  I brought my copy of Badfinger’s Magic Christian Music.  Before “Bible Study” began, I decided to get a Dr Pepper from the pop machine in the basement.  From the ground-floor entrance, I took a back way, down a narrow flight of stairs.

            At the top of the door frame was a roll-down fire door, similar to the above.  It had a lip so that anybody on either side of the door could pull it down.

           The above picture is the only one I could find online which shows the kind of pull-down lip I’m talking about.  Now, back to 1971 ...

            I was invincible (aren’t all 15-year olds?).  Without thinking, I decided to leap from the top of the steps to the bottom.  This seems doubly silly because at the time I was carrying that Badfinger album.  There was a BANG! and suddenly I was on the floor at the bottom of the steps.  Blood was dripping from my head onto floor, onto me, and onto the record cover.

            I hit my head on the fire door!

            Luckily the Boys bathroom was right where I landed.  I grabbed some paper towels to hold against my head.  I picked up the album, bought my five-cent Dr Pepper, and went back to the Youth Room.  Although several other kids kept telling me to call home for help, I refused until after Bible Study was over.  When Mom picked me up, she drove straight home with me.  She and Dad drove me to the Emergency Room.  We got there at 11PM.  My 2-inch “laceration of the scalp” was stitched up by good ol’ Dr Denyer.

             Recently I came across the emergency-room receipt in a bundle of papers.  That’s how I can pinpoint the date, campers!  If you were here, you could take a finger and feel the permanent ridge in my skull which persists, yea these forty-plus years later.

            Postscript:  I used to have several hundred LPs.  Most are gone.  But this puppy is still a prized possession, bloodstains and all!

            And that, Dear Readers, is why I can legitimately claim to be a headbanger.

            See you next Monday for more April Foolishness!

All original content
© by Mark Alfred