"It could've happened to anyone." That's what I told myself. I had to believe this, or else I'd have been a complete idiot for using the table saw while clad in a suit and tie. It was only going to take forty-five seconds to make that final cut and the finishing pieces would've been ready for assembly. Then after giving my presentation at the office, I could have put the entire china cabinet together that afternoon, and had it stained and completed by the next day, in time for Darlene and my twentieth wedding anniversary.
"You might have to brush a little saw-dust off your shoes is all." That's what I'd told myself.
"Sweetheart, you're really gonna be surprised."
Now I was stuck. The fancy new silk tie she'd given me was wrapped around the saw-blade.
"The Lord must look out for dummies; another second and your face would have been hamburger."
All I did was bend down to check the angle of the cut, forgetting about that decorative cloth tied around my throat. The circular blade grabbed my tie and commenced coiling it around that confounding contraption while pulling my head into it.
"Too bad your brain is not as quick as your hands were flipping off that switch."
I had to get loose, but it was wrapped too tight, with my eyes bugging out of my head from that thing choking me.
"The one time you don't have your pocket-knife with you..."
Even if I did have it and cut the tie off: what explanation could be given to Darlene? I had my cell phone, but I couldn't bear the thought of calling for help. I had to get loose on my own or the whole surprise would be blown, and I'd never hear the end of this if anyone were to find out I'd done such a stupid thing.
"Oh Lord, please don't let Darlene's brother find out about this. He razzes me enough about my fishing tactics."
Three minutes seemed like an eternity with the table-saw incarcerating me by my tie.
Here came my friend and confidant Smokey, my loyal dog. I could trust him not to tell anyone he'd seen me in this predicament. But even he cocked his head, looking at me like I was a few marbles shy.
"Come here boy. Jump up here and chew through this tie."
It seemed Smokey wasn't in the mood to help me out of this mess. He did however; provide moral support with that big tail wagging away and a smile on his face. Dogs are great friends. He doesn't care how dumb his master can be at times. It's that unconditional love thing.
"Why are you ruminating on such things while you're in an importunate state of emergency?" I was chewing myself out, but getting no closer to an escape plan.
I couldn't reach any tools to use... Only one option remained.
"Dear Lord Jesus, please forgive me for being so thoughtless. And I know it's because of my pride that I don't call for help. Poltroon that I am; I'm just too embarrassed to be seen like this. Please Lord, show me what to do."
Grabbing hold of that inconveniencing piece of silk with both hands, I pulled hard, attempting to either tear it loose or get it to unwind. I managed to get one wrap undone; giving me another inch and a half of the tie to work with. It was just enough to pull it across the edge of the saw blade, and start working that torturous adornment back and forth a few centimeters up and down the edge of the blade. My face was so close to the action it was difficult to focus my vision on it. The tie finally capitulated its tensile strength and began to tear, causing my stress to abate just a smidgen.
"Freedom!" It tore in half, leaving me with a very short, ragged, expensive tie. Ripping the blasted thing from my neck; it felt good to have the blood circulating to my brain again. Lord knows, I need all the blood I can get up there; I can't afford the unnecessary loss of any critical cogitating cells.
In the middle of my presentation on "power-tool safety", I looked down to notice I'd forgotten to wipe the sawdust from my shoes. Yet; call it a miracle; I somehow retained my position as head of our Safety Committee. The moral: practice what you preach.
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