While You Were Sparkling
Beach Houseness

Open the Gates & Seize the DoofOuchOwBumpShit

So. Okay. Let's get this hideously embarrassing story over with already. I've been putting it off for some reason, like I am laboring under the delusional illusion that I have dignity or something. 

I broke my toe a couple weeks ago, as you may or may not recall. In retrospect, it was a pretty bad break. I think it may have involved a joint in my actual FOOT, not just the toe. So probably a break that should have been checked out and/or coddled for a week or two in a cast shoe or something. Instead of what I did, which was tape it up for a couple days and limp around while insisting I was okay, then going to New York City with a suitcase full of ridiculous shoes. 

Photo (29)
Behold! A trifecta of dumbass!


I knew I was in trouble on the very first night, when I "only" wore the pair of strappy wedges and realized that I was having a really hard walking in them. Not just from toe-pain (pshaw! I can medicate that right up with martinis), but from balance issues. I was very weirdly wobbly, at least for me. Was I out of practice? Overly favoring my busted left foot and screwing with my center of gravity? Drrrrrunk?


So I made a point to start wearing flat sandals whenever I had to walk somewhere, and stashing my ridiculous shoes in my bag to change into once I arrived at my destination. This worked...somewhat, though I did fall flat on my ass at Sparklecorn in front of Avitable during a DRAMATIC RE-ENACTMENT of the moment when a crazy person stole Charlie's conference badge after he ordered her to stop making me cry.

And still. Lo. I did not learn. On Saturday night, we went to see Newsies. I wore my favorite shoes ever (the animal print ones, on the right), a Barbie-doll-riffic pair of platforms that have never given me an ounce of trouble, that have always been comfortable despite looking otherwise, that I have literally sprinted down escalators and across Metro platforms in. 

So of course I fell down the stairs in them. 

We were up in the mezzanine — a steep, terrifying old-school mezzanine — but oh, that part was fine! At intermission I got up to pee and realized that the line was already stretching back down the stairs to the orchestra level. I followed the herd down the stairs and...I don't totally know. I THINK I put my bad foot down on the narrow step and wobbled unexpectedly, then reached out for the railing but missed, while at the same time the crush of people behind me didn't realize I'd stopped and knocked whatever remaining shred of balance I had left.

I fell. Face first. I hit multiple steps with multiple body parts — my knees, my shins, my elbows, my shoulder, MY FACE. 

There was nothing to do but roll into it and hope that I would hit the solid floor eventually and would make it there without breaking anything. The bathroom line saw it all, and I heard the collective gasps of a good dozen people. Everyone — including an usher who saw the whole thing and rushed over — asked if I was okay, and I insisted I was, while also wishing they would all just SHUT UP SHUT UP LET ME GO ON WITH MY LIFE I ALSO STILL REALLY HAVE TO PEE.

I was the person everyone would talk about when they returned to their seats. I was Tai from Clueless, the girl who fell on her butt face, the girl who had no business wearing those stupid shoes. 

I turned down offers of ice and first aid (mostly because I HAD TO PEE AND DO YOU NOT SEE THIS LINE), took my shamey place in line, caught Jason's eye in the crowd and mouthed I JUST FELL DOWN THE STAIRS OMG to him, then inspected the damage in the bathroom. 

My left leg was bleeding — icky wide swaths of carpet-induced cuts — and my right leg was already bruising profusely as were both my elbows. My shoulder ached (that bruise wouldn't show up until later) and the right side of my face around my eye was red and slightly carpet-burned.

I stumbled out and told the usher I'd reconsidered the offer of some ice. They eventually brought me a plastic Duane Reade bag full of ice from the concession stand.

And so I spent the second act trying desperately to ice my various wounds while keeping the crinkly-bag-sounds to a minimum. The humiliated ache from my injured pride, however, raged on. 

(We didn't really care for the show either. Turns out I am a Newsies purist who thinks they changed too damn much from the movie and got all nit-picky about most of my favorite moments being removed. Though obviously my viewing experience may have been clouded by the STAIR-BLOW I TOOK TO MY FACE.) 

I am still sporting a bunch of impressive bruises and cuts, and a newfound ambivalence-slash-terror towards my heel collection. They are assholes and so am I. The end!



Oh Amy....I, yeah, that sucks. You looked pretty traumatized when I saw you at Cheeseburgher right after it happened. How's the foot now?

I'm seeing Newsies in the fall with Michael. I'll let you know how it is without falling down the stairs. I'm sure Michael will love it.


That sounds terrifying! Glad you're OK. Now. If you're done with those (gorgeous) shoes, I'll take them.

Whitney Worthington

Please take care of yourself! Hope you are healing OK.


Herm, I wonder where Ezra gets his klutzy genes from...

Glad you are feeling better and the bitter pain of humiliation fades as quickly as the bumps! Still makes for a good story whilst blowing time at a bar someday, I say.


eh, i saw the show uninjured and it was still not that great. the dancing, yes. the plot changes, NO. why ruin a good thing?

Kim W.

Ouch ouch ouch! I have never been much of a heel-wearer, but I think they're lovely just the same. And you! I hope you're OK. This is a funny piece -- thank you for sharing and for being such a good writer.

Carrie (in MN)

Okay, but if it had been me, I would've added to my humiliation by peeing my pants, so at least your bladder spared you that.


Ummm - methinks a trip to the do, maybe some x-rays, may be in order? Because maybe you're not just klutzy. Or an asshole. Just saying.


I am sad for you.

Also, I am laughing a little, but I am mostly sad for you. You had to go to Newsies?


Amy, although I disagree wholeheartedly re: your opinion of the show (Jeremy Jordan 4eva and the glorious, glorious DANCING), the second I read that you were seated in that mezzanine, dear lord, AND you wore those shoes... I just feel your pain. I sat in the mezzanine too, wore flats and still thought I might die getting to and from my seat. I completely understand how this happened! I'm sure you weren't the first and will definitely not be the last.

Call Me Jo

Your poor aching pride! I hope it heals soon. Also the carpet burn.


Do you think you should go to the Doc?


It is official. I am now old. I see your heel collection & where I used to think "oh cute shoes!" My first thought through this haze of forty-something is "Ouch. There are three pairs of tragedia-orthopedia laying in wait."
Hope you recover quickly!


At least you can blame the shoes. I fell down our basement stairs last week (barefoot) and broke my: scapula, elbow, pelvis, acetabulum, and sacrum. Surgery was involved. And the pain meds they gave me suck. Hope you feel better soon,

Ali V

All I can think is that I hope you purchased those animal print shoes recently and can tell me where to get them because, seriously, they are awesome. Clearly I don't learn by example. Hope you are fully recovered soon!

Brigid Keely

Well, at least you had the excuse of a broken toefoot. I managed to spectacularly fuck up my hand WALKING THROUGH A DOOR and as soon as that healed I burnt it very badly on the oven. ha haaaaaaa! Curse these mortal bodies! I hope you're healing up well.


At least I wasn't there, because I would have photographed it and memorialized it for the world to see. And then offered help and ice and booze.

The fact that you weren't seriously injured is impressive, and you may want to consider going into stunt work as a new career.


I'm new here. I'm really sorry about your fall, but it made for a really awesome read. My first real laugh of the day, in fact.


Goodness, I am so sorry. That hurts bad! I fell down concrete steps at my college,my heel got caught in the groove of the top step& came off. Shoes are dangerous. Black eye,chipped cheekbone,huge knee scar, day before my students piano recitals which I had to attend. I looked like I lost in the ring. I didn't catch myself cause I had their pretty certificates in my hands,didn't want to mess them up. Dumb!


Clearly I saw the wrong Broadway show on Saturday night cuz I was a few blocks away seeing ONE MAN, TWO GUVNORS and all the falling at my show happened on stage. Surely if I had gone to NEWSIES instead I would have saved you. Or something.


I had a TON OF FUN at Sparklecorn. The best part? Seeing you again and giving you a big hug! That conference was CRAZY this year. Fun, but not fun like last year fun.

Glad you are ok from your fall. That sounds super painful!


Those are awesome shoes. I would have done the same thing.


Have you taken the toe to the doctor yet? I fell over the curb at the mall, in Birks, so no excuse. Full barrel roll fortunately the only injury was to my 12 yo's pride. I have none left.


I'm impressed that anyone can walk in shoes that high. I've given up even trying. Flats and low heals all the way for me. :)

Now... when you fell down the stairs... was one of you first thoughts "now this is going to make a funny post."

Erika Mitchell

This is what comes of stay at home motherhood. My heels are all buried under miles of dust, and I'm sure the muscles I'd need to operate them have all atrophied long past the point of uselessness.


Wait a minute. You catapulted down the steps and no one offered to let you cut the line for the bathroom? That's total crap! I completely would have let you cut :)


Glad you are OK....those ARE cute shoes.

So do you want to hear my falling story?

A couple of years ago I was traveling to Alabama for work (I'm from Iowa). I was visiting various hospitals in the state and this particular day found me in a downtown hospital in Birmingham. There's no PC way to put this, but I was in the minority in a big way that day...I didn't see another Caucasian person all day.

So, I go to the hospital cafeteria to get lunch. I get my tray of food and head with my newspaper to a corner table because I feel like I am sticking out in a big way.

I take a step and my heel plants and I start to fall. It IS like the books....slow motion all the way. I might yell something, I can't remember. All I know is that I end up flat on my butt with my food all around me.

Obviously, the entire room is now watching this uncoordinated woman. One high school aged kid jumps up right away to help me (something that would NOT happen in Iowa, I am sure) and doesn't want me to get up since I might be hurt. Of course, the only thing that hurts is my pride and I am trying desperately to get up. I get up with help from the sweet high school boy and then, of course, the hospital staff insists that I get more food, so I am forced to go through the line again and then make my way to a table. This time I don't bother looking for a table in the corner b/c I am sure that everyone is watching my every move. I then wait out the few minutes that it should take me to eat and then gratefully get the hell out of that cafeteria :)


I feel your pain. I fell down in Reagan National Airport a few weeks ago. Right in the middle of Concourse C. In front of my boss and her husband. I fell with absolutely no dignity or grace what so ever. I couldn't have been wearing flatter shoes.


I'm so sorry! I hope your foot et al feel much better; if your foot does NOT feel much better please do go get it looked at.


My best friend and I went to see Newsies when we were 11 and both of us still have the soundtrack pretty much memorized. She went to see the show a few weeks ago and told me that pretty much all she could think about the whole time was how much they had changed and it spoiled the show so you're not alone (and now I won't be upset that I won't get to see it).


how bad am I to be disappointed that you did not post a picture? I know, really bad! Those are the kind of things that when they happen near me, I can't help it, I really try but can't stop myself, I laugh. ugh, I would have made sure you were ok first, of course, but then I very well may have pee'd myself, it would just be karma anyway. glad you are better and that I wasn't there to witness it!


I'm not sure if it was supposed to be..but that was the funniest damn story you have ever told..I'm sorry..lol
Did I ever tell you about the time I fell ALL THE WAY UNDER WATER at a miniature golf course..in suede boots??..Yeah, been there.

Korinthia Klein

Oh my god, just, OUCH. For me that kind of fall always hurts worse the next day, so I hope you're feeling all right.


The black shoes are far too dangerous and they will hurt your feet. You must mail them to me.


Holy wow. Do we get to see pictures? I love me a good bruise.

Suzy Q

When you got out of the cab at the Hilton, you were wearing cute sandals. Then, you changed back into the Killer Heels. Gravity Defiance, you haz it!


I think I have those yellow wedges too... are they Montego Bay Club from *cough cough* Payless? I recently rediscovered that place (after not having shopped there for over 15 years) and found they actually have some cute shoes now!


Earlier this year I started to fall head first down a flight of cement stairs at the train station. Fortunately I somehow landed on my knees on one step. Feet against the back, butt on heels, and knees hanging over the ledge. I couldn't get up without help, and limped down the rest of the way, trying to regain my dignity.


Earlier this year I started to fall head first down a flight of cement stairs at the train station. Fortunately I somehow landed on my knees on one step. Feet against the back, butt on heels, and knees hanging over the ledge. I couldn't get up without help, and limped down the rest of the way, trying to regain my dignity.


FWIW, if you didn't chip a tooth or break a snakeskinned heel (whoever's in heaven forbid!), the fall is forgettable. It's like new jobs where you wear old shit. Those people don't know you or know that those pants are totally 6 years old. Wait, there was an analogy in there somewhere. I think. Screw it; you ain't gotta see them again.


3 kids? how did you NOT pee in your pants sister?
i laughed at your story, but i do hope you are healing well.



I hope you are getting well now, anyway love the shoes......


Oh, no! I hope the bruises are healing...hopefully the beach is helping. I actually have TWO falling down stories...and they both entail Metro escalators. And the same SHUT UP SHUT UP LEAVE ME ALONE TO NURSE MY DIGNITY response to all the very concerned bystanders. And I wasn't even drunk! And now I wear flats on the Metro...

The comments to this entry are closed.