Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Story #21: "The Birds Will Eat Your Eyes"

This little story derives, in part, from a number of obsessions of mine, including the safety and welfare of other drivers (and, by proxy, myself); listening to and following rules, no matter how arbitrary; and Alfred Hitchcock movies. Intrigued yet? If not, the title of the story alone should have been sufficient to suck you in. It would have worked for me. Enjoy?  ~  JH

"The Birds Will Eat Your Eyes"

You should always listen to your parents. (My parents told me this.) The reasoning behind this is very serious, and it's very real. 

You see, if you don't listen to your parents, you are liable to make bad choices. One bad choice you might make is trying to send and/or read a text message while you are driving. This is not only illegal in some places, it's also quite reckless. 

Because when you redirect your attention from what it's front of you on the road to what's in front of you on your phone, you're opening yourself up to all kinds of bad possibilities. For instance, you might hit a pothole and lose control of your car. In a panic, you might overcorrect your steering and inadvertently hit a tree, spinning your car around three-hundred-and-sixty degrees in the blink of an eye.

In the process – if you also did not listen to your parents about always wearing a seatbelt no matter what – you might be thrown from the vehicle at a high rate of speed. You might be propelled bodily through the glass, landing with a surprisingly hard thud on uneven terrain, breaking limbs and possibly vertebrae in the process. 

If you happen to have crashed on a particularly desolate road – which is entirely possible, depending on where you live – you might not be found or rescued for quite some time (if ever). If you are losing blood rapidly, you will probably die a lonely and miserable death. 

If you are immobile but otherwise not seriously in jeopardy, you may still be at risk of consumption by wildlife. Generally, the birds will be the first to come, not to your aid but to what they perceive to be an extremely fresh meal. The birds – and we're not talking about sparrows, we're talking about big, ugly, ravenous vultures – will peck at your eyeballs and pluck them out and eat them. And then it gets really bad. 

After the vultures are done consuming your eyes, the wolves will come (or coyotes – again, depending on where you live) and begin to munch on the remainder of your carcass. You won't see them coming, because by this point you will be blind. If the vultures have spared your nose, you may smell the wolves (or coyotes) approaching. By this time, you may have a heightened sense of smell thanks to the loss of your eyeballs. 

You may smell them coming, but you will be able to do little to stop them from biting large chunks out of your torso. The worst part about all this is that you will probably live for quite a while, fully aware that your demise is imminent and – assuming you are not in a state of shock – writhing (as much as an immobile person can writhe) in unbelievable agony as the wolves chomp on your entrails.

And sooner or later, you will die. All because you valued sending and/or reading a text message more than you valued your future. All because you refused, no matter how many times you'd been admonished to do so, to wear your seatbelt at all times. All because you didn't listen to your parents. Shame on you, dead person.

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