Fate vs Chance

October 14, 2007

I’ll always remember the night I proposed to my wife.  May 31st, 2000.  Earlier today I watched Near Dark, mostly notable for starring the actor Adrian Pasdar (“Nathan Patrelli” on Heroes) in an early role.  On May 31st, 2000 my friend Jason asked me and a couple friends out to drinks at Q’s, a pool hall on Wilshire in West L.A., but I couldn’t attend, because I had plans to take out my girlfriend & ask her to marry me.  That night Eric Red, the guy who wrote the movie Near Dark (and also the Rutger Hauer/C. Thomas Howell movie “The Hitcher”) tried to commit suicide by driving his car through the front window of Q’s, killing two people.  One of the victims had their skull crushed against Jason’s hip, shattering it & earning him months in traction & a lifelong fear of dining at the window table of any restaurant. 

I think it’s human nature to focus on the times when things don’t go right for us; why did I choose one route home over another & thus get caught in a speed trap? if only I had stayed later or left earlier or said this or gone there things would be different and my troubles would be less.  But of all the universe of possibilities out there, it’s rare we get a direct glimpse into a “there but for the grace of God go I” situation.  I’m not sure I would have been killed or even injured if I’d been at Q’s that evening, but all things considered, I’m glad I wasn’t.

Amusingly enough, when I mentioned this story to a friend who doesn’t live here, their reaction was “Wow. Los Angeles is so full of celebrities that you can’t sit at a bar without having one come crashing through the window in their car.”



  1. You’re kinda creeping me out.

  2. Was it the hip getting crushed by a human skull part?

  3. Holy crap! I’d forgotten that happened that night! I remember both events, but didn’t realize the synchronicity.

    Do you still keep in contact with Jason? What’s he up to?

  4. So basically you’re saying you have me to thank. You are welcome.

  5. Tack that one onto my long list of irrational fears – I’m never dining at a window table again.

  6. Oh how the LBC’s life would have been different!

  7. Would she still be a monkey?

  8. I sense that the missus will be using this little reminder on a regular basis now.

  9. BTW, where did you pop the question?

  10. At a restaurant that, like so many restaurants of the past 7 years, has since gone out of business.

  11. Why was the person’s head near Jason’s hip? What kind of place is Q’s!? And in a window seat, no less…

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