Grand Opening 9-27-08
Free T-Shirt for the 1st 1,000 People.
Updated again TODAY 11-14-08 at the end of this Post - Scroll Down
I didn’t need the T-Shirt, but I decided to go to Waikiki this morning to see how long the line was, to hopefully be able to make another point about the economy and that people are buying.
Sure enough, the line was several blocks long. Apple had their own security people as well as the Honolulu Police Department on hand to control the crowd, and to be sure that nobody got in without waiting in line. They had their employees at the front door cheering for people entering the store. It was like the finish line at the Honolulu Marathon.
Those people not in the line for Apple were forced to walk in a narrow section of the Royal Hawaiian Center sidewalk. One would not think that an unfinished section of the flagstone sidewalk would be there to walk over without some sort of warning cone. At least I didn’t.
It has been suggested that I warn of some graphic images ahead.
As I stepped into the area shown in the prior photo my ankle twisted and down I went like a ton of bricks. My Apple laptop went one way, my iPhone the other way, and I found myself lying there in pain. Most amazing of all was that no one seemed to notice or care. I looked up at the Apple security and HPD people, and they just looked the other way. People were just walking by me; one guy even stepped over me. I felt like they thought I was a drunk laying there unable to get up. I gathered my computer and iPhone, opened up the phone and took the above photo while still on the ground. After what seemed like a very long time a Japanese man came over and asked if I was alright. I asked him to help me get to my feet, and he did. He had me assure him that I was okay, and then he went on his way.
I looked down at my knuckles and noticed they were severly skinned by the ragged, sharp edge of the unfinished flagsone. I was able to walk, so I proceeded to get in what I thought was the line for T-Shirts. That’s when the Apple security came to life and told me that the end of the line was down the block. He was doing his job; making sure nobody got out of order in the line. As I started to walk (slowly and painfully) towards the end of the line, I looked down at my hand and saw that it was now covered with blood. I went over to one of the HPD officers, showed him my hand and said, “I think I need some minor medical attention.” He looked at my hand and directed me to the Royal Hawaiian Center restroom on the 2nd floor of the building. I said, “I think I would like to talk with someone in Apple, perhaps they have a closer restroom where I could wash the dirt out of this wound.” He said, “Okay, wait here” and he walked into the Apple Store.
In a few minutes a man wearing shorts and lei came over and asked me what the problem was. I said, “I stumbled on that hole in the sidewalk over there (pointing to it) and I need to wash this blood from my hand.” He said, “Our property line only goes out for 10 feet. That is Royal Hawaiian Center property.” I told him that I didn’t really care whose property it was, I just wanted to wash the dirt and blood out of my wound. He then called for Royal Hawaiian Center Security.
Royal Hawaiian Center security escorted me to the 2nd floor restroom and told me to wash my hand in the basin. As I did that I was amazed at how much blood can come from three little knuckles. I also removed my shoe and saw that my foot was beginning to swell.
That’s when I looked down at my jeans and saw the knee area was blood soaked. I rolled up my pants leg and saw that the damage exteded to both my knee and shin. The security person (David) sprayed some anti bacterial solution on my leg and my knuckles.
That’s when I noticed that my left elbow took a beating as well, so he treated it too.
David applied a tourniquet type bandage to my leg to stop the bleeding and some ice to my ankle to slow down the swelling. I commented on the amount of bandaging, and he said something like, “They call me the Mummy Maker”. I must point out here that the three or more Royal Hawaiian Center secuity people were extremely helpful and kind throughout this ordeal.
Not you too?
I thought they might have been even too concerned when I saw the EMS (Emergency Medical Service) show up. They wanted me to come out of the restroom, but I refused, knowing how many tourists were most likely attracted by the ambulance and probably followed them up to the 2nd floor to gawk at someone in trouble. ERS took all of my vital signs, changed the bandage on my leg, and asked me if I wanted to go to the hospital. They emphasized that it would be a free trip. I declined and they made sure that I signed a statement saying that if I decide to go later it might be at my own expense. Expenses were at the bottom of my list of priorities at this time. I just wanted to get out of there, but not until after the curious crowds followed the EMS people back down the escalator. I was disturbed that they were not willing to clean the wounds or apply any medication to them. They told me they didn’t have anything to do that, and to do it myself at home. I got the feeling they were maybe irrtitated that I was not interested in an exciting ambulance ride through Waikiki. I called my dermitologist from the restroom and made an appointment to see him on Monday morning.
The Royal Hawaiian Center Security staff asked me to complete a written statement as to what happened. I obliged, and asked that a copy be faxed over to me. He said he would, but I did not get it, so I decided to document it all here while it’s fresh in my mind.
With me throughout this entire ordeal was Justin Dradi. Justin sells art in the center and knows me from his days at Wyland Galleries. He just happened to be walking by, and saw me talking with the policemen. Justin not only stuck with me, but he was thoughtful enough to take most of the above photos with my iPhone. At one point, without being asked, he handed money to one of the security people and asked him to go get me a bottle of water. When he thought all was finished he wished me well and left.
I was almost tearful when he reappeared with an Apple T-Shirt that he went back to get for me. I asked if that means they didn’t get to 1,000 people yet, and he said, “No, they were all gone, but I talked to someone.” I’ll bet he did. Someone at one point asked me if he was a friend of mine, and I said, “He’s my lawyer.” I was joking, and Justin laughed, but perhaps I was taken seriously. In any case, I know that he was just there out of the goodness of his heart and I will never forget it.
Two for the Price of PAIN
On my way out of Royal Hawaiian Center I stopped in to see the new Apple Store. The manager (Steve Perry) that I had asked for help from earlier approached, and asked if my iPhone or MacBook Air had been damaged in the fall. I said, “No, just my body.” He told me that he is here from Apple Corporate to open the store and that he will be leaving tomorrow. I opened up my MacBook Air, took him to my Blog and said, “Go here tomorrow and read all about it”. I showed him the photos still on my iPhone, and he said. “The policeman that came in here didn’t tell me you were bleeding.” He then asked me if I wanted a T-Shirt. I said, “My lawyer already came in and got me one, but I’ll take another one for my wife.” Yep I got two.
As I type this I am grateful for the Vicodin I had left over from a past dental surgery, and am hopefull that I will be able to walk in the morning, as I cannot at the moment. I’ll surely keep you posted.
Follow Up Sunday Morning 9-28
I want to thank those of you that have posted, called and e-mailed me with your sympathy, wishes for a speedy recovery, and requests for a follow up posting on the status of my unfortunate mishap on Saturday.
Among those that called was Jeanette Castro from Carl Warren & Company.
WHO? Carl Warren is acting as the “Apple Claims Officer.” She said that her company received a copy of the incident report that was sent to them from Royal Hawaiian Center. Her concern was; yep, you got it; if I intend to file a claim against Apple or Royal Hawaiian Center.
While I appreciated the call, I had the feeling that if I had said, “Royal Hawaiian Center” that would have been the end of the call. I told her that I am undecided on this question. She then (very professionally) asked me for details of the accident, and I directed her to this Blog posting. She said that she would be sending me a letter outlining my options, and should I want to file a claim against Apple, to get in touch with Carl Warren & Company.
This call brought to light the fact that I have not heard a word from Royal Hawaiian Center, which is obviously aware of the situation, and are in fact run by people I like to think of as friends.
What I find most disturbing about this whole thing is how our society has become so “litigation fearful” that people are afraid to “get involved” to the point that they “look the other way” when someone is hurting, are hesitant to ask important questions when interviewing job candidates, and afraid to fire employees not doing their jobs.
No Fear Here!
I’m afraid that Donald Trump (Your Fired) would be in constant “deep pilikia” if it were not for television entertainment.
UPDATE - 10-1-08
I decided to return to the scene of the accident in the “light of day” to see what happened. By “light of day” I mean with a clear mind. The “problem” became crystal clear, and can be seen in the photos below.
The lower sidewalk was seperated by stantions to seperate the Apple participants from the general public. This greatly narrowed the walking space unless you were in line for a free T-Shirt from Apple.
Add that to the design of the flower planter (without flowers) and it is easily seen what happened. In looking at this today I felt fortunate that I did not tumble out into the line of traffic alongside of the lower sidewalk and the planter box.
I was pleased to finally hear from Sam Shenkus of Royal Hawaiian Center today, showing concern for my welfare and asking what she can do to help me. I asked her whose decision it was to devide the sidewalk with those stantions, and she said it was made by Steve Perry of Apple.
I intend to attempt a trip to Maui today. The good part will be having an excuse to wear slippers, meaning the security experience will be more pleasant.
I survived the trip to Maui, but realize today that it was a bit too much; lots of walking. I plan to put my foot up for the rest of the day, and watch the VP debate. That should provide an adequate “pain transfer” and a lot of good humor for me.
Here’s the latest… I got a call I got today from Todd Onaka at Kamehameha Schools; owner of Royal Hawaiian Center. He informed me that they are filing a claim with their insurance company regarding my accident. (I wonder how much that is for) He said that the sidewalk, while it’s on city land is definitely Royal Hawaiian Center’s responsibility because they got a city permit to put in the flagstone sidewalk. He said that Apple could not he held accountable for what happened. He said that they (Royal Hawaiian Center) would cover any medical or out of pocket expenses that I incur. He also stated that he thinks the center plans to plant more shrubs in the dirt area where I fell. Now that’s the most constructive comment I have heard yet.
There seems to be a lot of attention being paid to legal responsibilities here by everyone other than me. I don’t know of any way to compensate me for the pain and inconvienance I have gone through. It hasn’t been about money; maybe I am being stupid and should listen to Reality Check’s comments on this blog posting.
My goal here is letting people know what’s going on in my world, that’s what this Blog had been about since it started. The good that I have received from this is the realization that I have an audience out there. I have received many more telephone calls and e-mails than Blog comments from people I didn’t know were paying any attention to my ramblings.
One week ago tomorrow I took this tumble. I don’t know if I was hurt more than I knew, or if healing just takes longer at 67 years old, but things still hurt. The most painful of all is the little finger. Isn’t that the way it is sometimes?
Little Finger - Big Pain
I sent this photograph to my dermitologist this morning and asked him if he thinks I have an infection brewing in here. I don’t know the answer yet, but am having dinner with him tonight. We are starting at his house with a martini, and if it’s anything like the last one he made me it should kill any bacteria anywhere in my body, if not me as well.
Little Finger - Healing At Last
My dermitologist replied that I DON’T have an infection brewing in here, invited me to his home for a martini, and we went to dinner that evening. That was Friday; here it is on Sunday. While it is still quite sore, I can see it is healing.
I had to cancel my weekly massage last week; too much pain, but today we went for it. My back had built up a lot of stress from both the fall and the different muscle usage from favoring the bad ankle, which I am pleased to report seems to be healing also. I still can’t get a shoe on that foot, but the swelling is going down and the pain level (1 to 10 scale) has dropped from a 15 (or higher) to about a 7.
Two Weeks Later
Well, it’s still sore but healing slowly. I cannot bend the little finger, but think I will be able to when healed. I also went into Waikiki today to see what has been done with the potential ankle buster.
I see that they have filled the spot with fresh mulch, but have nor eliminited the hazzard. There is still a sharp edge on the flagstone and still a level difference from the walkway to the lower flower bed. I can think of numerous things that could be done to correct this hazzard. Maybe I am just more sensitive because I have spent the past two weeks inconvienced and suffering as a result of it. I have the feeling that they are no longer concerned since I have stated that I do not intend to file a claim odf any kind. I don’t think that should be the motivation. I got a call from the shopping center’s insurance company saying that he is going to send a very strong letter to Apple about this and that he feels they are at fault. Maybe they are waiting for Apple to repair it. I’m more interested in seeing some future person prevented from an accident than worrying about who’s fault this one was.
5 Weeks Later - 11-2-08 - Foot still Sore and Swollen
I was asked to update this. I visited the doctor and he said that it was a severe strain with muscle tearing and that it’s going to take quite a while before I am back out walking normally, let alone running.
Fingers Badly Scarred, Still Sore and Healing Very Slowly
The doctor said that the severe scarring has created finger disfiguration. I cannot close my little finger, and it really hurts when trying to. He gave me some medicine to apply twice a day for three weeks to thin out the scarring, with the risk of thinning the skin itself. That’s the latest!
Here I am Again
This Place is Looking TOO Familiar
Seven weeks is a long time to be in pain. I am still not running or power walking on my ankle, but I am getting around okay. The big problem is the little finger. It continues to be very sore to the touch, and has a huge red scar. I returned to my doctor today to see if he thinks that plastic surgery will be required, and he suggested trying some cortisone shots first.
The shots got the bleeding going again, so I am back in “bandage mode.” He said to call him in 5 days to see if the scarring and soreness has subsided any. We take our health for granted until something like this happens, and then it becomes quite apparent how sensitive something like a little finger can be. I suffer most when reaching into my jeans pocket for money. I guess some people find that painful anyway, but I usually enjoy it.
The Next Day
The corisone fluid seems to have made it even worse. I’m hoping this is one of those “looks worse before getting better” things.