It Came From The Nerd Cave PSA–The Warning Labels on Ladders Are TOTALLY For Real

You put your right hand in...

You put your right hand in…

     What’s up nerds of Earth?  I know you’ve all been itching to see more of my skeleton and I aims to please. What we have above is my right hand–no breaks and/or fractures to be found.  Frankly, I’m wondering if I’m not a real-life version of Bruce Willis in Unbreakable because that hand should be jacked up.  Why? Because I’m pretty much an idiot for operating as if the law of gravity and OSHA safety regulations don’t apply to me.

     Last Monday, I got home a little early after getting my glasses fixed. Which actually reinforces the theory that I might be super-human, now that I think of it.  I’ve only had these glasses for 18 months and my acid-like sweat actually dissolved the metal of the frames.  The part that holds your glasses on…it’s called a “temple”…I had to Google it. My super excretions ate through that bad boy like Alien blood through a 1985 Yugo.

     So anyway, I’ve got about 90 minutes until I need to take Max to his flag football game and he asks me if we can decorate the front porch for Halloween?  We’d gotten some spider webs the weekend before–something that has become a tradition for us despite my loathing of all things arachnid-related except for Peter Parker.

     I figure, “Hey, why not get that monkey off my back and just knock it out.” Operation Get Off Your Butt, right? I climb up in the attic and get the Crypt Keeper down as well as a few other odds and ends.   We get the cobwebs hung, the Keeper mounted, and the porch lights switched to green CFL bulbs.  Things are looking suitably creepy.  Last thing to do is hang the giant rubber vampire bat from a hook that usually supports a pot of Geraniums.

     And here’s where I got stupid. If you’re a frequent reader of my crap, you know I’ve joked about frequently falling off of ladders. I almost can’t hang Christmas lights without doing it at least once.  But those usually involve coming down on the grass or in a bed of soft mulch and I almost always execute a near-perfect parachute landing fall. And to be clear, I didn’t get to go to Jump School in the Army, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express once.

     Well, this particular day, I’m thinking, “It’s the home stretch. I hang this stupid bat, put away the ladder, and I’m on the couch chillin like a villain for 45 minutes…”  I’m already thinking about what foodstuff I’m going to be jamming in my piehole next.

Honey! Your mother is at the door...oh wait.. Nevermind.

Honey! Your mother is at the door…oh wait.. Nevermind.

     I can’t exactly tell you where the whole thing went wrong.  I figure I must’ve put one leg of the ladder too close to the edge of the porch and I probably mounted the ladder (heh, heh) a bit too fast for a 44-year-old stocky fellow.  Maybe some inertia was involved…I really don’t know.

      What I do know is that as I hit the third or fourth rung (3 to 4 feet in the air or so?), the ladder decides to fly off into the flower bed.  Not just tip over, mind you, but take off as if Yoda pimp-slapped it with some Force powers or something.  It really felt like the hand of God reached down and flicked it…like a little brother might do to his big sister’s ear. And when I say the ladder flew off into the flower bed, the same was unfortunately not true for my sexy keister.  Maybe it was some kind of “every action has an equal and opposite reaction” deal.  If you’re a physicist, please leave a reply in the comments section if you can shed some light.

      Whatever the science behind it, my body proceeded to fly in an Earthward direction until I pretty much pancaked right onto the concrete porch.  I believe I actually made a “SPLAT” sound. I remember thinking as it was happening, “This is gonna leave a mark.”  I landed on my right side with my arm pressed against my body.  My right hand/wrist took the brunt of the fall, which is way better than my skull if you’re a “glass half-full” kinda person. It was probably the worst fall I’ve had since 2nd Grade when I fell out of the jungle gym and hit every bar on the way down like a scene out of a Tom & Jerry cartoon.

     I sprawled there on the porch for a couple seconds then staggered to my feet expecting to see bones sticking out of somewhere. Luckily, other than a skinned elbow, the only real pain was in my wrist.  And it could’ve been much worse.  I landed about a foot away from a big 60 lb. concrete planter by our front door.  If I had hit my face on that, I’d probably be eating green bean smoothies through a tube today.

     I waited out the pain in my wrist for two days and finally relented to my wife’s “suggestion” to get it checked out.  Turns out I didn’t break anything (because I’m Unbreakable Baby!) and just pretty much squished (that’s a technical medical term) the tendons on the top of my hand.  I’ve got a splint now which helps a lot because it keeps me from bending back my hand every 5 minutes to see if it still hurts…yup, still hurts.

     So, let my dumbassity be a lesson to all you macho men out there.  You know who you are.  Every time you see that big yellow warning label on a ladder, you think, “Pfffttt. I’ll stand on the top rung if I freakin’ want to…”   Dangerrrrr zoneeee! And that part about making sure the ladder is stable? Blah, blah, blah. Is any ground ever really level? But that label is there there for a reason. Apparently. So, be careful.  Until next time…stay nerdy (and breathing) my friends.

Copyright 2013 It Came From The Nerd Cave