Due to his blind enthusiasm and clumsiness, my older brother has a tendency to injure himself in interesting ways. He’s always doing something interesting. And that always becomes a good story about how interesting he is. Wait, I don’t mean interesting. I mean stupid. He’s always doing stupid things that result in his being injured. He once ran into a tree while playing frisbee in the front yard. His own front yard. He couldn’t even run 15 feet in his own yard without ramming his cheekbone into an oak. It’s fun enough for me to watch him hurt himself that I’ve started to set a video camera up whenever we do stuff outdoors... just in case. But it’s more fun to hang out with him the first time he sees someone after an injury. He’s usually embarrassed enough about the real events that he doesn’t like admitting what he’s done. So he’s developed quite a talent at explaining away his interesting injuries with ridiculous answers. I guess he figures people will be distracted enough to forget about finding out the real story.
When he ran into the tree playing frisbee, he ended up with a plate-sized scrape on the right side of his face. (He looked like Harvey Dent at the end of The Dark Knight.) And he was so embarrassed about running face-first into a tree that he told people ridiculous lies. He told one of his friends that he’d cut himself shaving because he sneezed too hard. He told another person that he was attacked by a puma while vacationing in Costa Rica. He told his girlfriend that he was saving a toddler from being struck by oncoming traffic and was dragged by his face when his belt loop got caught under a truck. I guess he usually runs about a 33% success rate with his stories, because one person believed the shaving story. So I guess it pays off occasionally if the person listening is an idiot.
When he sprained his ankle while walking down his driveway, he got really creative. He borrowed a friend’s expired handicap placard for his car and told everyone that he had volunteered to donate a ligament to a crippled child in Indonesia. I think the handicap permit was what convinced people of the story’s authenticity. He only stopped telling people when his friend in medical school called him out on it.
But my all-time favorite was when he broke his hand. He actually managed to convince most of his friends that he broke it during a particularly intense tetherball match. In reality, he hit it on my mom’s recliner as he was stupidly running through the house, and it snapped like a twig. But tetherball sounds cooler. And people believed it, so he saved face. (Scarred, oak-scratched face.)