Safety first...a story about that

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Blog entry by SST posted 03-30-2008 08:56 PM 1333 reads 1 time favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I was reading “Safety tip # 97, never wear flip-flops” and it got me thinking about a safety related experience I had a while back. It didn’t happen in the work shop, but I think it’s still worth telling.

I was doing some re-bricking at the top of my chimney and rigged up a rope, bucket and pulley system to get the bricks to the peak of the roof & the top part of my chimney. I would put the bricks in the bucket and hoist them up to the top and then tie off the rope and go up & unload the bricks to the roof.

When I was finished with the project, I filled the bucket with the unused bricks…and rather than do 2 loads, I thought I’d save time by getting all the bricks heaped into one bucket load. (smart, eh?) I then went down the ladder and prepared to untie the rope and ease the bucket down.

Because I’m a “safety first” kind of guy, I didn’t want the rope to slip through my hand, as the bucket was overloaded, so I (cleverly) wound it around my wrist a couple of times. When I untied the rope to lower the bucket, I realized I had grossly underestimated the weight of the now overloaded bucket. (Who’d have thought?)

The bucket, now heavier than me, began a rapid descent towards the ground (and me) at the precise time that I began a rapid ascent towards the roof peak (and the bucket) At the half way point in our respective journeys, the bottom of the bucket made contact with the top of my head (ouch), and after a brief pause, we both continued on in our previous directions.

Reaching the terminus (don’t you just love words like that?) of my upward trip, (gives the term “rising to the top” a whole new meaning, doesn’t it?) I jammed my rope-wrapped hand into the pulley at the peak of the roof, (ouch, again) at precisely the same time that the bucket hit the ground, knocking out all of the bricks.

I now became considerably heavier than the empty bucket, and, the laws of physics being what they are, I began a rapid descent just as the bucket began a rapid ascent. (you remember…”for each action there’s an equal and opposite reaction”) Speaking of laws, I’m sure “Murphy’s Law” has a place somewhere in this tale.

Anyway, at the halfway point, we met again…the bucket hitting me square in the __ (knowing which direction it was coming from, you can fill in the rest). (OUCH, OUCH) We then continued on to our respective ending points.

At the same time that the bucket hit the pulley at the top, I hit the ground (ouch, one more time) which caused me to let go of the rope. (not my best move of the day) The bucket, now heavier that the rope, began a downward plummet making contact with the top of my head yet again. (ouch…is there no end to all this???)

And the moral to this story is: If someone tells you that you’re a few bricks short of a full load, it may just be a good thing, after all.

There, that’s my Sunday afternoon story, and I’m stickin’ to it. -SST

-- Accuracy is not in your power tool, it's in you

13 comments so far

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4223 days

#1 posted 03-30-2008 09:01 PM

Good story!

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 4109 days

#2 posted 03-30-2008 09:10 PM

Previously posted in “Safety tip # 97, never wear flip-flops” .

View will2480's profile


27 posts in 4040 days

#3 posted 03-30-2008 09:13 PM

That is a great story and I’m glad that you have a good enough since of humor to share it with us all!

View Napaman's profile


5530 posts in 4312 days

#4 posted 03-30-2008 11:24 PM

ouch…wow…I was laughing…only because I know you are still here to tell us the tale…too bad you didnt have a video camera on the set-up…you would be winning America’s Home Video of the year (century) with this one…and then you could be rich…

One question: were you wearing flip-flops??? Or did you hit your head (and other spots) a few too many spots that you added this story here…just wondering budddy…

-- Matt--Proud LJ since 2007

View Grumpy's profile


24808 posts in 4086 days

#5 posted 03-31-2008 12:16 AM

There is an Irishman that tells a similar tale SST. Are you two related?.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View SST's profile


790 posts in 4430 days

#6 posted 03-31-2008 04:12 AM

I must admit that the tale was not a personal experience, but rather it was a Sunday afternoon frolic in prevarication. It probably had its roots in an old Warner Bros. cartoon. -SST

-- Accuracy is not in your power tool, it's in you

View Karson's profile


35152 posts in 4635 days

#7 posted 03-31-2008 04:17 AM

Great story, But I’d heard it before.

Maybe it was from you. Since I can’t say it wasn’t.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia †

View Betsy's profile


3392 posts in 4131 days

#8 posted 03-31-2008 04:34 AM

Check out this site. Will explain the myth behind the story. It’s an interesting read.

-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine

View Napaman's profile


5530 posts in 4312 days

#9 posted 03-31-2008 04:48 AM

you had me going…with that story telling ability make sure you have a good lawyer…

-- Matt--Proud LJ since 2007

View Tony Z's profile

Tony Z

205 posts in 4025 days

#10 posted 03-31-2008 02:25 PM

I saw that on Mythbusters.

-- Tony, Ohio

View DocK16's profile


1184 posts in 4322 days

#11 posted 04-01-2008 03:38 AM

I thought April Fool was still a day away.

-- Common sense is so rare anymore when you do see it, it looks like pure genius.

View againstthegrain's profile


117 posts in 3987 days

#12 posted 04-01-2008 07:50 AM

Too funny

-- Anchul - Warrensburg, MO: As a Pastor, I am just trying to get closer to Jesus. He was a woodworker too.

View Eric Vossbrink's profile

Eric Vossbrink

70 posts in 3985 days

#13 posted 04-04-2008 01:15 AM

Safety tip # 103: Never attempt to lower an object that weighs more than you do….while wearing flip flops


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