Paul Madonna severely injured by a hit-and-run.
November 22, 2022 12:50 PM   Subscribe

San Francisco cartoonist Paul Madonna was driving his regular commute in a smart car through McLaren Park, when he was struck head-on by a Mercedes Benz going the wrong way at approximately 50-60 mph.

Reposting, but changing the phrasing and links to remove fundraising directly.

Bystanders were luckily there on the scene and called 911, and since he was very close to home, his wife got there to be with him when the ambulance came.

He underwent four hours of emergency surgery to address substantial internal injuries.

The Benz driver fled the scene.

You can find a link to his wife's GoFundMe in the article.

Previously, previously.
posted by ishmael (22 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
If you don't know who Paul Madonna is, he makes amazing comics that somehow exist in that liminal space between landscapes and literature. It's a bit hard to describe succinctly, here's an article and interview with an overview of his work from 2014.
posted by ishmael at 1:02 PM on November 22


(The comics at the bottom of the page are closer to what he does now).
posted by ishmael at 1:03 PM on November 22


Here's another, better sampling (click on the comics themselves, the text has been cropped out of some of them).
posted by ishmael at 1:05 PM on November 22 [2 favorites]


Oh my god.
posted by Lawn Beaver at 1:37 PM on November 22


Despite the previouslies, I don't recall ever hearing about Madonna or seeing his work - but now that I have - wow! What an incredible artist. I am always in awe of people who can create like that. Wish him the very best.

Also - one q: "Madonna’s smart car" - what is the reason for specifying that it is a "smart" car?
posted by davidmsc at 2:11 PM on November 22 [2 favorites]




In terms of physics if it was a "smart car" which are super small and light, the mercedes could have just knocked him out of the way and kept driving it sounds like. What a nightmare.
posted by bleep at 2:49 PM on November 22 [5 favorites]


"smart car" which are super small and light

That's what I am assuming. A lot of people drive those fiat-sized cars in the Bay Area.
posted by ishmael at 3:22 PM on November 22


Oh no! I hope he has a speedy recovery. We bought his first book at City Lights Bookstore over 10 years ago - it’s one of my husband’s treasures.
posted by dbmcd at 3:52 PM on November 22 [3 favorites]


Maybe "smart" as in the badging.

Yup. SmartCar in the US occasionally edges towards genericized trademark for “microcompact/city car/kei car”, but it’s an existing brand that now produces small electric cars in China. (Originally, Smart was an abbreviation for Swatch Mercedes Art. Yes, as in the wristwatch company.) Whatever the model, it’s going to be a much smaller, lighter car than the Benz.
posted by zamboni at 3:57 PM on November 22 [2 favorites]


I read this too fast and thought it just said “ Madonna injured by hit and run.”
posted by Ideefixe at 3:57 PM on November 22


I feel like I can almost guess with a 100% certainty where exactly he was struck - Mansell Street is a nightmare and I've had my own close calls with drivers while walking my dog there. Wishing him the best.
posted by flamk at 5:00 PM on November 22 [2 favorites]


I think they actually mean a Smart car, as in the tiny two-seater made by Mercedes-Benz. Wikipedia says it's suposed to be stylized as smart, for maximum who's on first confusion I guess.
posted by each day we work at 10:04 PM on November 22 [1 favorite]


Mod note: Note: I've removed the parenthetical extremely detailed description of injuries. This info is not included in the linked article, and in any case would need a pretty serious content warning, meaning many wouldn't be able to read the post at all.
posted by taz (staff) at 1:12 AM on November 23 [2 favorites]


I also assumed the brand Smart Car. I used to want their Smart Roadster, which is, IIRC, essentially the Smart ForTwo but with a more midlife-crisis styling.
posted by pompomtom at 3:07 AM on November 23 [1 favorite]


(and, cool as they are, a Smart Car is not the car I'd want to be in in a ~100km/h collision)
posted by pompomtom at 3:09 AM on November 23


Note: I've removed the parenthetical extremely detailed description of injuries.

Ah, I'm sorry about that. I should have added a content warning. Wanted to clarify how serious it was, didn't mean to traumatize anyone.
posted by ishmael at 3:31 AM on November 23 [1 favorite]


That's what I am assuming. A lot of people drive those fiat-sized cars in the Bay Area.

...


(and, cool as they are, a Smart Car is not the car I'd want to be in in a ~100km/h collision)



Even a Fiat 500 would have offered more protection in the form of crumple zones. Smart cars are basically a roll cage on wheels.

If the car has no crumple zone, the kinetic energy of the crash still has to go somewhere. Unfortunately that is not good for the passengers.
posted by Fleebnork at 7:03 AM on November 23 [5 favorites]


It is perhaps ironic to note that Mercedes is a 50% owner of the Smart automotive brand.

Anyway I hope he makes a full recovery.
posted by spitbull at 10:03 AM on November 23


Oh my God, this is awful. I am sorry too that I didn't know his work beforehand. It's amazing.

I'm not in the market for a car, but I did have my eye on a used SmartCar for whenever I was. Now I am thinking twice and three times about that. It should be safe, but if other drivers are going to be like this, to say nothing of SUVs --
posted by Countess Elena at 10:46 AM on November 23 [1 favorite]


It's amazing how the focus of public discussion is that the victim wasn't wearing enough armor.
Although as a cyclist, I shouldn't be surprised.
posted by tigrrrlily at 9:11 PM on November 23 [7 favorites]


It's amazing how the focus of public discussion is that the victim wasn't wearing enough armor.
Although as a cyclist, I shouldn't be surprised.


Yeah like in the first place why it is legal to drive an automobile through a park? Then let’s examine how it’s even possible to get a car up to 50MPH there.
posted by rhymedirective at 8:35 AM on November 24


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