It was a near miss that left me shaken.
A beach umbrella that had been anchored in front of a neighborhood hotel — a nice high-rise with the usual amenities — darn near took the ol’ dharma beach bum out yesterday.
The day was glorious otherwise. There were just enough clouds to keep the sun from being oppressive, and I had found about 30 sharks teeth in two hours.
I heard a sunbather gasp about the same moment that the umbrella tumbled over me. Its pole planted six inches from my right foot as the canopy flipped directly over my head. One of the canopy’s yellow flaps brushed against my right temple. Thank God nobody yelled, “heads up,” this time.
Some of you might have read my July 19 blog, “Wham-O! DBB beaned by Pluto Platter,” in which I wrote of the way I attract accidents as if I were the magnet and they were the steel. This is more proof.
I spun and watched as the umbrella cartwheeled yonder. Some dude disarmed it 50 yards north of me. He collapsed the umbrella and sat it near the dunes.
I trembled. Christ, I never knew I wanted to live so badly.
Imagine the headline in the local fishwrapper, The Tidal Eyechart: MB man skewered by beach umbrella. Then the subhead: Never got point of life till now.
After nearly being turned into a human shish kebab (for those pesky beach cannibals), I said a mid-day prayer, dharma beach bum style, in front of dozens of people lounging near the 62nd Avenue beach access. No, I didn’t care that I looked like a heron-legged, hipster doofus.
At that moment, I felt like Job, so I borrowed a little from his Bible bellyaching. “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, Ra, and naked I will depart, but please tell me what I have done to offend your High-ness. Forgive me if I’ve sunned.”
Once I shook the cobwebs, I realized that I was nothing like Job. He owned 7,000 sheep, 3,000 camels, 500 yoke of oxen and 500 donkeys. He also had numerous servants, and it was said that he was the greatest man in greater Uz.
I, on the other hand, am from Myrtle Beach. I don’t have enough room for the smallest of petting zoos. I own little — other than 29,000 sharks teeth and a lot of books.
All I’ve ever wanted, other than a mate who looks like Marilyn Monroe, is to survive another morning of beachcombing.