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Old 06-19-2009, 10:39 PM
 
2,700 posts, read 5,158,330 times
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Younglisa's post for those of us born before the 80s had me laughing and remembering my own childhood. As she said, it's a wonder any of us survived -- which I say all the time. I have NUMEROUS near-death experiences going back to my early years, and I'm sure others do, too. What are they?

One of mine:
Circa 1979, we'll say. I was about 8. My mother was a real-estate agent at the time and was home working in the kitchen at the table. She asked me to go and fetch her a desk lamp. So I found a lamp...but the cord was too short. Found an extension cord. Plugged the extension cord into the wall. Put the lamp on the table. Plugged the lamp cord into the extension cord. Except...the lamp cord had a big-prong/little-prong setup like we have on (American) power cords today, and the extension cord had holes for little-prong/little-prong. So I was able to get the lamp cord plugged in only about halfway, but no further, and then I realized I needed to pull them apart and go find a different cord. Problem was, I had wedged the lamp cord prongs so firmly into the extension cord that I couldn't pull the two cords apart. Aha! I'll PRY them apart. And obviously it's a narrow and small space to work with, so what shall I use?? I know! I'll use a flatware knife. I'll be able to slide it in the space between the prongs and pry the two cords apart.

(Do I need to remind anyone that the extension cord was plugged into the wall already?)

My mother was sitting right there but blissfully unaware of the course my problem-solving had taken me as I grabbed the knife from the drawer, inserted it in the space between the two prongs, and....

BANG!

Blew every fuse in the house. The lights all exploded and went dark and there was this huge noise and I'm standing there with the cords and knife in my hand going, "What just happened?" while my mother gaped at me in shock.

Luckily, since this was back in the 70s, the flatware my family used at the time had wooden handles. The metal blade of the knife touched the prongs, which were live with electricity because the extension cord was plugged into the wall, but the wooden handle stopped the current from entering my body and electrocuting me. There was a peppercorn-sized divot out of the side of the knife's blade, though, where the current ate through the metal.

Thank goodness for the tacky design choices of the 70s, right??
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Old 06-19-2009, 10:44 PM
 
Location: Western Hoosierland
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that is one astonishing story!!


I was born well after the 70's and have had some near death childhood experiences of my own including one very similar to yours.
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Old 06-19-2009, 10:47 PM
 
Location: So Cal
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LMAO. Funny story.

I sometimes have to work with electricity. I'm not an electrician though. One time were working at a college checking out some electrical panels, and we accidentally shorted something out, and due to an improper electrical installation we took out the whole bldg.

We're like WTF, you could hear people starting to go ape shyt.

Sorry, not a childhood near death experience, I try to think up one....
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:11 PM
 
2,700 posts, read 5,158,330 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chowhound View Post
Sorry, not a childhood near death experience, I try to think up one....
I must have gotten all yours, Chow. My run-in with electricity was not my first near-death experience.

Let's see.... My first near-death experience was when I was a toddler and involved cockroach spray. My (older) brother claimed that he just didn't want me to get cockroaches. (Uh-huh. Likely story. I've always suspected he had it in for me.) That one required a trip to the hospital to have my stomach pumped. (I don't remember this incident as I was just about 2 years old.)

Near-death experience #2 was when I was about six and I do remember it. We put a pool in our backyard and my father insisted that my brother and I be able to do certain things in the pool, like tread water for a certain amount of time and jump off the diving board. I knew how to swim and I wasn't afraid of the water, having moved to Panama to the canal zone (with my Army captain father) when I was an infant and grown up in the water. But I was TERRIFIED of the diving board for some reason. So, again...I problem-solved and thought that if I just jumped close to the wall, I'd be able to reach up immediately for the wall (once I went into the water, I mean) and pull myself to safety. Only I miscalculated -- by a crucial few inches -- the distance from the diving board to the wall. So I jumped...and most of my body went into the water, but my jaw and chin and face did not. The impact split my lower gum wide open and my lower teeth fell right out onto the poolskirt. Ha! I don't know how I didn't break my neck...or why I don't have neck issues today. I should have.

There are a few other incidents that involved my brother -- he put me in the dryer and turned it on, deliberately tried to nail me in the forehead with a pick-axe, etc. -- but they fall more into the category of "good clean fun."
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:22 PM
 
Location: So Cal
38,776 posts, read 37,960,929 times
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Your brother sounds like he might be a resident of San Quentin.




San Quentin State Prison - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:23 PM
 
Location: planet octupulous is nearing earths atmosphere
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when i was like 5 years old i was running around with a plant stake in my mouth and ran into a wall at our house and it stuck like one half inch in the back of my throat!!! i remember it vividly..i cryed like hell
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:32 PM
 
2,700 posts, read 5,158,330 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chowhound View Post
Your brother sounds like he might be a resident of San Quentin.
Ha! No. But there was a lot of talk of "sibling rivalry" in our household by our parents. Somehow "rivalry" seems like the wrong word choice. A bit too tame.
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Old 06-19-2009, 11:33 PM
 
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Originally Posted by cruxan View Post
when i was like 5 years old i was running around with a plant stake in my mouth and ran into a wall at our house and it stuck like one half inch in the back of my throat!!! i remember it vividly..i cryed like hell
A plant stake? Those little wooden ones that are 3-4 inches long? Ouch is right! Makes me cringe to think of it.
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Old 06-20-2009, 06:02 AM
 
Location: Airports all over the world
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I was too little to remember but my mom has never let me forget that I once plugged the car keys into an electrical outlet.

When I was 10 a bunch of us would dig tunnels into a sandy embankment. Our tunnels almost always ended up collasping with someone half way inside. We got real good at digging them out fast.
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