Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: CLUMSY (04/11/19)
TITLE: Dave’s Disasters – Destiny or Density?
By Noel Mitaxa
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We might label some disasters as accidental, like when he passed some food over to a chess rival and accidentally caught his sleeve on the corner of the board. Game over!
But other mishaps reveal times of complete poise-desertion. Or, to put it kindly, in this supermarket we call existence; Dave resolutely rides the shopping trolley with the wobbly wheel - a wheel that revolves around a firm belief that the physical laws of the universe only govern other people.
One day at the beach saw him racing to the water’s edge to retrieve a ball. Grabbing it and turning, he then heard a wave approaching. But instead of trying to outrun it, he leapt into the air. Everyone else collapsed to see his astonished expression as he splashed down – into deeper water than he might have otherwise experienced. Was he expecting to stay up there – or the wave to suddenly stop?
Who would know…
More seriously, his head carries several scars. Many of them caused by sulking shelves, from times he has stooped under a shelf to reach something and tried to stand up from that position - as if the shelf no longer existed. Shelves apparently take a dim view of being ignored in this way.
Replacing a faulty wall socket? A cinch. For safety, he switched off the circuit at the meter box before unscrewing the socket and its wiring; connecting everything to the new socket – using a metal screwdriver – before pushing it all back in place and re-screwing it to the wall. A point of special interest on his return to the meter box was to find the power circuit still live. He had disabled the light circuit instead!
Did this affirm the power of that wobbly wheel? Please wait, dear reader…
Final preparations for his wedding day included changing the oil in his car. Easy peasey. After removing the sump plug to drain the old oil into a small tub he had placed beneath the engine, he wondered why it was taking more oil than normal. Until he saw the sump plug in his other hand. Problem solved by a rapid descent beneath to reseal everything!
Building his kids a tree house? An awkward branch needed to be removed, so he leaned his ladder on it and began sawing – on the trunk side of the ladder. Soon afterwards, the triage nurse at Accident and Emergency asked him, “Sir, did you expect to stay there while the tree fell over?”
Tightening the hoops at outdoor basketball courts? With a ladder and roof rack on his car, he planned to move from one set to the next, holding the ladder through the open window to save having to keep tying and untying it. First set done, he placed the ladder on the rack; sat at the wheel and reached up to secure the ladder. With his other arm, he reached across to yank on the door handle. That’s when he realised his mistake, before the top of the door fractured his forearm.
Thankfully, this time another triage nurse was on duty.
After a Saturday night youth rally, some singers discovered they had left some personal effects behind at a huge auditorium. Could he collect them? Familiar with the hall staff, he was allowed in, and found their residue at the top of the spiral staircase to the wings at stage left. Having heard the hall’s organ playing, he assumed someone was practising, so he strolled onstage bearing the effects and looked up left to see someone at the organ console, with an assistant poised to turn each page. He paused to listen, before idle curiosity prompted him to look over his right shoulder. That’s when he saw most of the two thousand seats occupied by music lovers. Yes, dear reader, Dave had silently gate-crashed a Sunday afternoon “Music for the People” concert; and quietly beat a hasty retreat.
Modesty forbids the author from confessing Dave as a nom de plume, or how many of these episodes are autobiographical. However, he’s sure to recognise his guardian angel as having the robe with the deepest perspiration stains. Until then, he rests on the promise of completeness from 1 John 3: 1-2 “Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him.”
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