Answer: They've all been thrown off horses.
Reeve had the most disastrous result, obviously.
Gibson had the next most dangerous crash.
And Madonna got off lucky.
She broke a collarbone, some ribs and something in her forearm. She's going to be sore, but she'll be fine.
I'm sure she's thrilled to be hearing from me about horse riding injuries.
Mine was a beaut.
I got bucked off my horse. I flew through the air just like Michael Jordan (search) except I didn't jump and I was flying backward and lying flat about to crash on the ground on my spine.
Had that happened, I doubt I'd be sitting here.
Instead, I turned ever so slightly to land on one side of my rear end. I saved my spine by giving up my pelvis.
I hope Madonna is listening so she knows how much worse it could have been.
They used a nine-and-a-half inch screw to put my pelvis back together. It's still in there, along with a plate and some other small screws.
If I lose weight, I set off the metal detectors at the airport. Too many pounds and the metal detector is silent.
Interesting, huh? Keep an eye out for chubby terrorists hiding something in their pelvis.
Anyway, I was in a wheelchair for six weeks and crutches for six weeks. And the busted ribs took another six weeks after that to heal up.
So Madonna, I was 57 when I crashed. You were 47. Lucky you. That ten years probably saved a couple bones from breaking.
The ribs are going to hurt for a while. The dirty little secret of the hospital is they don't really do anything for broken ribs but tell you not to laugh and be sure to take your pain pills.
One more thing: Get back on the horse as soon as possible.
The horse doesn't care. But, believe it or not, it will help you.
There, my advice for Madonna.
That's My Word.
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