Thursday, November 5, 2015

Puddle of Blood

When I was a kid my dad had his workbench in the basement, or as we saw it, that big wooden table with all the toys on it. Surprisingly, Dad didn't ever complain about us screwing with his tools. He had hammers for pounding nails into walls, screwdrivers for prying up flagstone so we could find the ant colonies, and hand drills for making holes. That would be holes in anything that we deemed to be in need of a hole. My favorite tool was the automatic screwdriver. It was a mechanical wonder, with a sort of spiral gear that would spin the screwdriver blade as you pushed down on it. Like I said, I loved playing with that thing until the day I caught some flesh in that spiral gear. One thing Dad didn't have was power tools. He was old school that way. He was also cheap and didn't see the point in paying for something he could muscle through. Lucky for us that he didn't have power tools, otherwise I'm sure at least one of his eleven children would be walking around now with an odd shaped scar.

The day before Halloween this year, I walked in on Mark working on his costume.
"What are you doing?"
"I'm trying to cut the end off of these scissors so that...  "
"Argh! Is that my pipe cutter!? That tool is for cutting plastic pipe, not metal."
I looked down and spread out on the dining room table were an assortment of my tools. Wire clippers, pliers, a pair of tin snips, and then there was that pipe cutter in Mark's hand. All of them with their cutting edges gnarled and ruined.
"Oh, that may be why it isn't working."
"You need a hacksaw to cut metal, a goddamned hacksaw. Not any of those tools, not my...  ask me, just ask me..." I sputtered.
So I grabbed my tools off of the table and put them away where they belonged, and thought about how lucky I was that Mark didn't try to use my power tools. The last thing I need are paramedics and a puddle of blood in the dining room.

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