I hit a drunk driver. Yeah, I know it should be the other way around.

It was about a year into my driving career; I was 17 years old. At the time I was whipping around an 01 Accord sedan (in quite possibly the best car color of the early 2000's, beige gold. God, I miss that thing.). It wasn’t the first accident, it had a few battle scars from some fender-benders, but this accident was the first serious one.

I was coming home from my friends place late at night, around 1AM or so. At the time I lived in rural Ohio near the Ohio River, and curvy backroads connected all the small towns to each other. I was with a buddy and we were coming down the hill into a small town where every other building was a bar. Right before the end of the hill, there’s a T intersection. Right before I cross through it, an F150 pulls into it from the side road and stops in the middle of the intersection. I had no choice but to hit him, and I did. I tried to take the corner and maybe escape major damage but I clipped the back end of his truck and the airbags went off. The horn was stuck on, smoke pouring out of the hood, the whole 9 yards. Once I got my bearings and checked on my friend, I got out to yell some mean things to this dumbass, but he drove off. I was pissed but glad to be OK.

I managed to find enough cell service to get the cops to come, and we did all the paperwork associated with the crash. I was lucky that a woman down the street saw it all happen and gave a statement. She was a bartender at one of the pubs and said she’d kicked the guy out earlier in the night. So that was nice.

As me and my friend were getting looked at by the medical unit, a car pulls past us and an old woman comes up to the policeman. I assumed it was some pedestrian that was checking to make sure everyone was OK, but it wasn’t. Turned out it was the drunk dude’s mom, and she brought the dude with her, too. He ended up owning up to the whole mess so I wasn’t liable for anything.

My friend and I were completely uninjured, other than a small cut on my forearm. Oddly enough, it was in the shape of a smiley face. I had a close classmate die in a much more serious accident earlier in the year, and to this day I still credit her for pulling some strings up in heaven and looking out for my ass.