I can’t remember a time I’ve even been so shaken. Not much in life surprises me. I’ve seen it, been there, and done that in a lot of regards – but when you are very literally walking down the street and in the next breath you can FEEL your brain hit your skull and you wake up on the ground unable to talk, think, or move… shit gets real.
I didn’t ask for this, the person didn’t know who I was – I was very literally in the wrong place, at the wrong time.
The place happened to be my old neighborhood, and the time happened to be at 7:30pm – on the BUSIEST street in Hollywood … ugh.
Here’s what happened, as much as I can remember. This is really hard for me, btw. I cannot believe I have actual staples in my head right now.
Need a song to go with the post. Hold up a second …
So much better.
I say this 100 times, I will say it 100 more. If we have met in person IRL, maybe you can pick up on it, but my ENTTIIRREEEEE life I have been a people magnet. Casting directors have told me it was that “it” factor, blah blah blah blah blah – whatever the fuck it is, people are attracted to my energy. It is GREAT for things like launching a brand, or getting picked to be on The Price is Right, or getting to dance on stage with Prince, or any of the awesome things that I’ve been blessed to do in life. It completely SUCKS in the sense that it also makes me a “lower hanging fruit” to people who are not so nice that either want to carjack me, attempt to kidnap me, break into our house, or in the case of last Thursday – fuck me up randomly on the street.
I have this energy, this force, this field that people are drawn to. I don’t know what else to do with it other than work with it, and figure my own shit out. I have learned to throw a punch, take a punch, fire a gun, and have wielded a knife before. I stay VERY calm in freaky situations, and pride myself in being able to assess a situation and figure out where my inner ninja is and unleash the mothafucka.
Everything in life is cause and effect. If you start to add enough things up, you can figure out the outcome pretty damn fast. This has proven to be 99.9% effective!!! NINETY NINE POINT NINE!!! I bartered social media to live for a year – spending that time without a home, I went out on over 103 DATES IN 9 MONTHS with no one … and I mean nooo one fucking my shit up, however, in the case of last Thursday, I found the one variable unaccounted for – an attack from behind with ZERO warning.
OMG I cannot stop crying … I just cannot believe this actually happened …
So, Thursday was the day before TNTML’s first ever live stage show in Hollywood. Super big deal, total dream come true for me growing up on stage, and writing my first play when I was 11 – I love love love doing stage shows. There is so much anxiety leading up to it, breaking down every cue and every bit of everything having it all make sense, topped off with the “just get it fucking done” attitude – and then BOOOOMMMMMM just like that it’s done and over with – and the roar of the audience applauding your work provides all of the gratification you could ever need. Live shows are fucking AMAZING!!! I adore them!! You get one shot at being amazing, and you have to have to have to make EVERYTHING work. It’s incredibly symbolic of life … and my thing. I love the rush. It’s not for everyone for sure, but that’s what makes me good at what I’m good at doing. I’m someone that can just get shit done.
Things were pretty crazy all throughout the week. I was confident in the show going well, but we didn’t have a lot of rehearsals, and while I trusted the cast and their capabilities you never know how people are going to react with a live audience … so needless to say, tension was high.
I even told dudes on OKC, please for the love of all things holy don’t talk to me right now. I can’t do anything this week, nor could I even THINK about anything other than the live show and wondering if we were actually going to do a good job, and if people were going to like it.
By the time Thursday had come around we had done all of the run throughs that we could (shy of a dress rehearsal), and I was scratching off the final items off my list.
1) I had to get a “nerd cup” for our nerd’s cup game.
2) I had to print the playbills.
That afternoon, I had gotten an email from @jennhoffman saying that there was a storytelling show at Meltdown comics that night, and that we should go and see if we can learn anything from them (as our live show incorporates storytelling). I was all in, and said this is GREAT there is a kinkos on Sunset as well, and I’m sure in one of the shops along the way I can find a cup for nerd’s cup.
At around 7 I hopped on the bus over to Sunset, and got off right near kinkos.
I then printed out all of the playbills (76 in total) and holy mother of a goat in a coat taking a toke that shit was FUCKING EXPENSIVE!!! One hundred and something dollars later, and a solid understanding of why print media is no longer – I left kinkos walking to Ross en route to pick up the Nerd’s cup.
I needed either a mug, cookie jar, or something visually appealing – and I knew Ross had a bunch of weird shit that no matter what I could creatively play with and figure out how to make it all work.
I obviously didn’t know Ross’ current inventory but figured I had shopped there enough to know that I could not only find what I was looking for, but I could get it at a good price.
After surviving off of $10 for an entire year, I will FOREVER be a frugal, frugal bitch.
I left kinkos, walking down to Ross – and after seeing a Star Wars tumbler for a mere $2.99 I was in LOOOVVEEEEEE!!!
Fuck yes! I thought. This is big enough to be seen by the audience, and large enough to actually have all of the alcohol dumped in it throughout the show during the storytelling.
I then went up, and after waiting in line for a solid 20 minutes, paid for the mug – and hustled my way back onto Sunset walking to the show.
I was wearing one of my hoodies from The Berrics, with a skirt and flip flops. Very Cali, very LA – but with the hood up also 5% gangster.
I had my Beats by Dre headphones on my New Radicals playlist on Pandora, and was pretty zen.
I got to Poinsettia and the street at that point was pretty quiet. All of the shops were closed or were closing. Not a lot of people walk in LA either, so I was one of the only people on the sidewalk.
I then walked past this hair salon, briefly looking into the window. There were about 10 people inside.
I continued to walk, and the very next thing that I felt was this RUUUSSHHHHHHHHHHH. It didn’t hurt, I wasn’t in pain – but all I could feel was my brain hit my skull and suddenly my body started falling towards the ground instead of walking forward.
I heard no noise, nothing – everything went silent as I fell to the ground.
Then everything went black.
I have no idea how long I was on the ground for, and I had no idea how I freaking got ON the ground in the first place. The next thing I remember was someone pulling me up, and I instinctively grabbed the playbills that were in the bag I was carrying, and the Star Wars tumbler I had just purchased.
Are you okay? Are you okay? The person asked.
I try to speak, but realize I can’t.
He came up from behind you and hit you.
The person then carries me inside the hair salon, and instructs me to sit down.
I begin to cry. Not out of pain, but general confusion for what took place, and confusion for the fact that I can’t even formulate a single thought.
The hair salon was owned by a bunch of tough Russian chicks, so of alllllllllllll the places for me to get attacked, this was the best one.
Half of the salon leaves me and goes after the guy.
Let’s beat him up, I hear someone say as they begin chasing him down Sunset.
I then look up and realize I am by my old Ralph’s. I used to live off of Sunset, so I knew exactly where I was since it was a mere block away from where I used to live.
I still couldn’t speak to anyone at that point, but I grabbed my cell phone, and without knowing her name, I filtered through my text messages finding Jenn Hoffman.
I clicked the message and the phone began to ring.
Hey! What’s up, said Jenn.
I again tried to speak, but words weren’t coming out of my mouth.
Jen? Jen? she said.
Attacked. Ralphs. Ralphs.
Are you okay? she asked
Attacked. Ralphs. Ralphs. – all I could say at that point were those two words.
Are you inside Ralphs, she asked realizing I was hurt.
Salon across street.
Okay, you’re at the salon. I’m coming to get you.
I then hang up my droid, and feel the back of my head. I’m bleeding profusely.
I cry again.
The Russian hairdressers comfort me.
Moments later the cops arrive.
What’s your name, and address please?
I gave them both, surprising myself that I knew my name.
I look up at the cop with mascara stained cheeks, I wasn’t robbed, or raped. Why did he do this?
I don’t know, he said as he comforted me. We’re going to get him though.
The Russian ladies begin to speak to the cops.
He was hanging around our shop. He looked crazy, and all of the sudden he came up from behind and just hit her. We were all so scared.
I could literally feel my brain swelling at this point. I wasn’t in pain, but I knew I was hurt … badly.
Moments later Jenn arrives.
Are you okay sweetie?
I shake my head no.
The cops then tell her that I have to go to the hospital.
It would be best if you take her since you’d save money on the ambulance.
I don’t have insurance, I say.
I’ll take her, replied Jenn.
I then got up from the chair, shakey on my feet and got into Jenn’s jeep on the way to the hospital.
I began to tweet trying to keep sharp and stay conscious.
My brain then drifted in and out of daydreams. As I stared at my twitter stream, the avatars appeared to be talking back to me.
Unable to differentiate between fantasy and reality, I stayed quiet.
Moments later we arrived at Cedars.
I check in on Foursquare – again utilizing social media as a way for me to stay conscious.
I am taken into the emergency room, but am overwhelmed by the bright lights and sounds.
People keep talking to me, but I stared back at them in confusion.
I have never had a brain injury before, and being a nerd and so aware of my brain made all of this that much worse.
I was one of the first people taken into the ER and given a bed.
I start taking pictures …
The police then come by.
Did I just talk to you? I ask
No, different officers. But I wanted to let you know we caught the guy. The salon owners chased after him, and caught him. He was wanted on a felony warrant.
Why did he do this? He didn’t rob or rape me – I am so confused as to why?
We don’t know either, but we know that we have him and that you’re safe.
I was then given some forms, and I had to sign something called a people’s arrest.
Could you identify him in a line up, asked the cops.
I never saw anything. I had no idea I was even hit.
We will take that as a no, replied the officers.
The police then leave, and I reach down to grab my phone and call my parents worried that they might read about what happened to me in social media versus me telling them.
I call my dad’s cell phone, a sign that this is an emergency.
After a few rings it goes to voicemail.
As I was hanging up, my phone rings back.
Jen, do you know what time it is, replies my mom angered at being woken up.
Mom, I need you to stay calm, but I am in the hospital. I got attacked tonight on Sunset and I’m not sure what happened as I didn’t see anything, but the guy is in custody – people chased after him.
The doctor then came by my bed.
I have to go now, mom – but I am okay, please know that. The rest will have to be figured out later.
The doctor then took a look at my head.
We’re going to need to do staples. Let’s get this cleaned up.
Staples, I thought? I’m getting fucking STAPLES put into my head?
Moments later he came back with a nurse and they administered a tetanus shot, followed by two numbing injections on my skull.
Then came the staples.
So fast, so precise. I felt nothing.
You’re all set. Do you want to be wheeled out?
I shook my head yes.
I was then wheeled out. I couldn’t help but wonder what from the night was a dream and what was reality? Everything was all so blurred the fact that I was even IN the hospital felt like a dream.
I continued to cry as the nurse wheeled me back into the main lobby.
I was just walking to the comic book shop, I cried.
Its okay sweetie, its okay, the nurse said calming but reassuring.
Jenn and her boyfriend Shane then took me back home.
As they were helping me back up into my apartment I said, we’re still doing the live show. As long as I am physically alive, we will put on a show. I don’t know how my memory will be, but we HAVE to make this work.
Jenn laughs – just worry about getting better.
Oh I will, but we’re doing the show.
ANNNNNNDDDD 24 hours later we did. 4 new staples and all.