May 14, 2005

D'oh! A deer!

So I ran over a deer last night.

I was on my way back from a pastoral musician's meeting in Peoria, cruising along I-74 at about 70mph. It was a few minutes past ten, so there were a few cars, but not many; for a while there had been just one car visible ahead of me a half mile or so. I noticed the taillights not receding, and it was soon clear that it had pulled over; I switched to the left lane to give them room. All of a sudden, just before I was about to pass them, the pool of light ahead of me illuminated a hulking mound about eight feet high, right in the middle of the lane. Well, maybe only about a foot and a half.


Holy CRAP I just ran over a deer. If it wasn't dead before, it is now. In the split second before I hit it I knew I wouldn't be able to steer around it, so I figured I'd best try and get the car centred over it---in retrospect this was probably wise, because if one wheel had hit it I could've flipped the car or broken an axle or something similarly dire. As it was, I immediately went to the shoulder and stopped, so distracted I stalled the car because I forgot to put in the clutch. I sat there for a minute. What the hell do I do now?

Well, I had that old emergency kit that had sat in my old car unused before being switched to this one, where it sat unused. I plugged it in and looked under the car. There was a piece of plastic hanging down and touching the ground. There were a lot of unsavoury deer bits. But all the metal car parts appeared intact. Not having any tape or any other way to reattach the plastic (which was just there to protect the undercarriage), I broke it the rest of the way off.

At this point, I was thinking about how to make sure the people in the car behind---clearly it had hit the deer too---were ok and had a phone and such. Could I just walk up? That'd be kind of sketchy... but about this time two people were walking up to my car. They were making sure I was ok and had a phone and such. :) They mentioned going to Knox---oh yeah, they did look sort of familiar---and they'd recognised me, or at least my car. And as it happens, my downstairs neighbour Margaret was the one driving the car! Talk about random.

Talking to them, I was able to reconstruct what happened: she was driving along in the right lane, and a deer ran out ahead of her. Although she hit the brakes, she still clipped it with her front left headlight, which it crunched. The impact knocked it into the left lane, which is where I hit it. I haven't checked with her since, but based on what I saw it looked like she'd just need to replace the headlight and maybe the front quarterpanel. All the people involved were totally fine.

I should probably get a mechanic to look at it just in case, but I'm pretty sure there's nothing wrong with my car, amazingly enough. Aside from the deer fur and bits everywhere. Ugh.

"For two millennia, despite the primary message of the Spirit being one of salvation, the Dark Lord's PR teams have been busy spinning it into a message of human degredation, making us feel dirty and unworthy of what Christ freely gave, until the very name of Christ has become synonymous with a view of humans as fundamentally fallen rather than fundamentally redeemed." --Jonathan Prykop

Posted by blahedo at 10:45pm on 14 May 2005
Sounds scary. :( I'm glad nobody got hurt. You should let Nutmeg sniff your car. ^_^ Posted by Susannah at 12:09am on 15 May 2005
We just replaced the plastic bit on our car from the fallen deer that we hit. What a horrible experience, eh? There is still a stain on my wheel. I concentrated on shedding velocity and getting a good grip on the wheel. I expected to blow the tire, and would have likely done so on a buck. Did you smash a doe or buck? Posted by lee at 12:37am on 15 May 2005
Doe, or a very young buck---no antlers, at least that I saw. Posted by blahedo at 2:47am on 15 May 2005
It's certainly the season for it. My boyfriend caught a racoon last night in a very similar way.... I'm glad to hear that all the people involved are OK, though it sounds like your poor car's in need of a good bath. Posted by Chelsea at 1:13pm on 15 May 2005
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