How The Guy With The Crutches Attained Enlightenment

There was once this guy who had no self-worth as a kid. He grew up believing he couldn’t do things. Somehow, he made it through school and got into college. It didn’t help him.
One day he got hit by a car. Broke his leg as well as one or two other little things. He got laid up in bed a while, so he felt even more sorry for himself until had to go back to his studies, at which point he reached a personal record in self-pity.
Because his leg wasn’t healed yet, he hobbled through his days on crutches. Though never a popular guy, people started offering their help when they saw how difficult it was for him to move around and do stuff. All of the feelings he wished others had shown towards him before the accident were now forthcoming. He liked it. He liked it a lot. They made him feel like he had been right to feel sorry for himself for all those years.
Six weeks passed. Then eight. Then twelve. People started to mumble. After the sixteenth week, a girl from his Literature course asked him when he would no longer need the crutches.
The damage, he lied, was permanent. He’d need the crutches and painkillers the rest of his life. Shame, she said. Was there anything she could do for him?

Years later, someone stole his crutches. He had his suspicions about who it was. Some backpacker loser who drifted through the YMCA looking for props to get handouts with.
He could’ve searched the bus stops nearby for the thief, but wouldn’t walk there without his crutches. He stayed in bed and sobbed for a week until a kid looking to launch an acting career bought him an old pair from a pawn shop down the road.
Y-y-you- you’re useless, the kid said handing them over.
What kind of actor are you? You can’t even speak, he told the kid. What kind of role do you think you’ll get?
A-a-as the stuttering idiot, the young actor told him. Or the-the gimp.
Several years after, that kid went on to win an Academy for a movie about a king with a speech impediment.

And the guy with the crutches? Karma.
He got hit by a car. Again.
Bust the same leg up real bad and asked to have it amputated when given the choice. Finally he didn’t have to lie to himself or the world anymore. He really needed those crutches.


14 thoughts on “How The Guy With The Crutches Attained Enlightenment

  1. Carl

    I agree on the voice. I liked the story teller. The multiple parables here are terrific and not at all cliche.

    The amputation was a very unique solution for the ending, and I found it slightly creepy.

    I always keep my crutches by my pity pot, but I’m so good on the pot (the pity pot), that I don’t usually need the crutches, and I could go on but I won’t!

    1. scribbla Post author

      Thank you. As I mentioned to Re Gypsy, I was intentionally looking for the storyteller’s voice with this one. I’m glad you could enjoy it.

    1. scribbla Post author

      Yeah. I can think of more than a couple of my own wishes coming true and my regretting it!
      Thanks for the read and comments!

  2. Team Oyeniyi

    Not twisted – bang on the money with some people. Just a little more physical than in most cases, perhaps.

    Reminds me of the guy here in prison for murdering several people in our gangland war, who got killed himself in prison. I actually had dinner with him and his wife once – by total accident. A friend of mine was his barrister, we were in Cairns on holiday, we were invited to dinner – I had NO idea who he was until halfway through dinner.

    1. scribbla Post author

      Now that dinner party would make for a fascinating short story, I’m sure.
      Yeah, I’m afraid that this piece was prompted from real life observations. What you gonna do, right?

  3. Val

    In the end, we always get what we want, whether we need it or not! lol You are on your game with this one scribbla. 🙂

  4. Re Gypsy

    I like the narrators voice here, real story telling (the way you heard stories when you were a kid). P.S. Karma sucks don’t it ;o)

    1. scribbla Post author

      Thanks. When I was writing, I was trying to get the voice of a storyteller of old. Your observation makes me smile – thanks. I felt that the story was like a modern day fairy tale/parable that, even though was straight forward enough and about a guy that you are allowed to dislike, could still refer back to the reader. Without pointing a finger at them, of course. I particularly had addiction and destructive relationships in mind as the deeper parable of this story.

  5. Kay Camden

    Your most twisted yet. Okay, maybe not. But close.

    And the POV work is great. I didn’t catch the irony of the stolen crutches right away, but when I did, I had that “oh yes” moment.

    1. scribbla Post author

      Thanks Kay. I guess it’s twisted in a very hidden kind of way. Or maybe not. Didn’t feel like it when I wrote it, lol.

      1. Kay Camden

        Well, I think it’s the writing style juxtaposed with the subject matter. Casual, straightforward writing + voluntary amputation = a bit twisted. And that’s a compliment, even though it doesn’t sound like it.


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