The list of things my wife has brought into our lives that have attempted to kill or maim me over the span of our 23-year marriage continues to grow.
This time, a lawnmower almost got me, and I knew it would happen.
The running joke at our house — one that has gotten less and less funny over the years — is if something needs to be put together, dad will probably end up bruised, bleeding or at the emergency room.
Possibly all three.
I’ve begged Rachel to quit purchasing things that need to be assembled, but my pleas are ignored like I disregard the instructions on the weapons of destruction she continues to bring home.
It started early in our marriage when I sliced my hand open trying to hang a shelf in our laundry room.
A couple of years later, I figured I had ended any chance of Rachel ever asking me to handle anything sharp again when I ran a Phillips screwdriver all the way through my hand trying to put a bookshelf together.
But, alas, she continues to purchase items with the words “assembly required” stamped on the box. It might as well say “A trip to the ER for a tetanus shot is about to happen.”
There was the Thomas the Tank Engine table I tried to put together for our son as a Christmas present when he was 4. Thankfully, Kyle was young enough to believe me — and to think it was cool — when I told him the dried blood on the table came from a derailment involving Thomas and Percy.
There was the entertainment center with three glass shelves. I’m sure the neighbors were entertained when the EMTs showed up at our house with all of their colorful, flashing lights.
There was the one time I decided I didn’t need a mechanic to fix Rachel’s car. A friend who liked to work on his own vehicle occasionally said it sounded like my problem was the starter, and suggested I hit the starter with a hammer to see if I could help it make a connection.
The mechanic I eventually had to call soon made a connection with his travel agent to book a trip to the Bahamas thanks to the damage I did.
Two years ago, we bought our son a basketball goal for Christmas. I should have sent it back when I saw an instruction manual about the size of the one used to build the space shuttle.
It was one of those adjustable goals that either allows him to shoot at a regulation 10 feet or lower the goal to a little over 7 feet so he and his friends can risk their lives by dunking on a goal that, to put it bluntly, has issues. The main one being a backboard that has a permanent 45-degree lean to the right.
On the bright side, if a professional trick shot league ever forms, my son and his friends are surefire first-round draft picks, and I expect to be compensated handsomely.
The latest adventure came this past weekend when Rachel purchased a small, battery-powered lawn mower to use inside the fenced area where our furry children — Sarge the Yorkie Poo and Bentley the Yorkie — frolic.
At first, we put the mower on the front porch to assemble the handles, but knowing my history of injuries, we quickly moved the mower to the ground.
That brilliant decision kept me from falling off the porch, but did little to keep me from tripping and falling up the concrete steps.
Thankfully, the good Lord gave me tough bones to go along with my hard head, so other than some bruises and a few more scars added to the collection, the main injury was to my pride.
I’m sure one of these minor tasks will eventually do me in, and if it does, make me a promise.
Someone make sure the words “I told you so” end up in my obituary.