“I look cute!” That innocent thought led to a serious accident for Shan Boodram when she was riding her bike Monday. But she turned that injury into an important lesson by flaunting her bruises when she attended a movie premiere the next day.
“I was riding my bike home on the legendary Highland Avenue wearing a cute outfit (thigh-high boots, a turtleneck dress, and a great metallic jacket), listening to Frank Ocean, and then the thought occurs to me, ‘I look cute! Look at me riding my bike looking cute! I should put this on my Instagram story!” the author and YouTuber recounts to Yahoo Lifestyle. “So I unplug my headphones, take out my phone, and hit record.”
But that’s when things went downhill — literally. “Within seconds (I know this for a fact because again it was all recorded), my bike suddenly jerks to the left and next thing I know I’m face down on a busy street,” she says. “I lay there for a second stunned, then a group of people rush toward me urging me to get up fast because I was on the road. I collect my phone and bike, then stunned walk home just thinking about the possibilities.” The thoughts that went through her head included, “if my bike jerked the other way I would have hit my head on the curb, if there was a car behind me it could have crushed me after the fall, if I didn’t land on my cheek, I could have knocked my teeth out or worse.’”
She realized how much she risked just for “a few people to say ‘you look cool.’” This left Boodram feeling “so, so stupid and so stupidly lucky.”
And it’s not the first time she’s taken such a risk, but it definitely was the last. “I have done this before,” Boodram admits. “Whether it’s something as extreme as recording myself or something small like switching the song. I needed this wake-up call, even in terms of how I use my phone when driving.”
She now had scrapes on her face and arms and was due to attend the premiere of Wonder the next night. But instead of turning it into a makeup emergency, she turned herself into a walking PSA. “I originally tried to put makeup on my face, but it looked weird, and earlier that day I DID put that video on my Instagram story of me falling and made it into a learning lesson so it just made sense to keep the trend going,” she explains. Boodram was inspired by a quote from a book called The Road to Character. “I read a page that day that said if you don’t act with humility you will be humiliated. So I chose to right my original wrong and do something that wasn’t all about me looking good.”
While she still looked awesome in mustard-color cropped pants and an iridescent crop top, all eyes were on a message she wrote on her chest: “Don’t ride and text.” She wore her bruised ego on her sleeve, rocking her bandage with pride and smiling ear to ear despite the red road rash on her cheek.
She shared a photo from the event on her Instagram. “Paying it forward and reminding you: When you’re on the move, do not be on your phone,” she wrote in the caption.
“People just asked what happened and then everyone lectured me about not wearing a helmet and of course being so risky,” she says of the response. “I took all the lectures with a smile — they were well deserved!”
Read more from Yahoo Lifestyle:
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