This is not a nice story; it ends in two deaths. Stop here if you wish.
I was surprised I found The Helmet on EBay. So surprised I said I knew what happened to my helmet. That was not necessary; it did not move the story along, but the helmet on the desk was something I remembered from that night.
When we bought the motorcycle that helmet was the only one of its kind. All the others were sparkly red or blue or black. That glitter was popular. Riding, I saw only one other, and that was somewhere in Missouri. We were going opposite directions through a large intersection. Each waved and pointed to our heads.
I said we were down to one car, and I used my motorcycle. I even picked Beth up from school, took her to day care and went back to work. Rain or shine. Come fall I knew I would not be riding the bike in winter. We sold it; Jim bought me a ten year old Chevy Corvair. The biggest mystery--how it became ten years old.
The helmet sat on a hall closet shelf. We divorced. The helmet sat on the shelf. My oldest and best friend, Carol, divorced not too long after I did. She had just come to work at my company as a temp; a few weeks in I told the president of the company he should hire her full time. He did. That was 1972; my divorce 1973. Hers, probably 1974.
Carol met a fellow somewhere. His name was Carl. They were together at least a year. Carl was a biker; I believe that's all the transportation he owned. He admired the helmet sitting on the shelf, I sold it to him. Carol and Carl eventually broke up. He had more women on his string than her. She was crushed.
In retrospect, I cannot remember Carol ever being a passenger on that bike. I may ask her, though the fact also doesn't advance the story. Or the Corvair, or the divorce, or Beth and day care. They're all just padding to avoid the end. Carol came rushing into the house one night, hysterical. There was an accident; Carl and his passenger were dead. A picture in the paper included that helmet, shattered in many pieces.