Volume 3 #22 May 16, 2005 Near death experiences. I've had a few. Most people have, I suppose. Let's consult the latest polls. Oops, wrong! 98% No and 2% Yes. I have never trusted polls. Ever been polled? Your trusty "screen 'em out" answering machine has probably been instructed to dust them off before the tone. Whatever. Back to the subject of nearly dying. As I said, I have come close more than once. I should number them. I will try to put them in order. I have a pictorial mind but I hate mathematics. I will endeavor to do my best. The first traumatic encounter was when I was four years old. My parents, my younger brother and I were living in a small house in Pennsylvania. Thunder and lightening storms are common, there. The lightening struck our house and carved it in half. No fire. But extreme damage to my father's eardrums and my psyche. I am deathly frightened of not only storms but any sounds I cannot control. Makes it a bit difficult when you live underneath the neighbors that Satan threw up from Hell 'cause he couldn't stand their endless, migraine inducing stomping! I guess that's a 24/7 kinda near death! The second was when I was fifteen. My father was a part-time TV repairman. We lived on one third of an acre, south of the tracks. So, he constructed, with the aid of old tin cans, a small golf course. Our clubs were top 'o the line Goodwill. I went into his workroom and there was an exposed "gun" (old timey word for TV picture tube). I chose my dilapidated driver and it slipped from my hands and struck the gun. I waited for the guaranteed implosion. It didn't happen. Whew! Eluded dying. I was nineteen when the next opportunity came. Ovarian cysts that caused peritonitis. Survived that. Another one coming. I invented toxic shock syndrome and nearly died from a tampon overdose. Next: When I was twenty five, I rolled my VW Beetle over a fire hydrant and landed right side up. I've heard that you're supposed to see your life flash before you. All I could think was: "Don't let my face be crushed!". Yet, there is another. My little dude and I were on holiday in Las Vegas. Gall stones. Little teeny, tiny ones that got wedged in the duct. I went to hospital and all they did was shoot me up with a painkiller that made me extremely nauseous. I got home and had my gall bladder removed. As of this writing, touch wood, I have been out of the near death loop. The point to this is: I have listened to people who have had similar experiences. They have seen the white light. The bright corridor where a long lost relative tells them: "Go back, it is not your time." I've never experienced that. I've had pain and peace. Never the eerie callings or instructions. Next time, Lord, don't give me my pink slip. Just lay it on me!