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The First Man

We all want to be ‘the first” at something. . .

Neil Armstrong was the first man on the moon, Chuck Yeager was the first man to break the sound barrier, Charles Lindbergh was the first person to cross the Atlantic ocean solo in a plane, Roger Bannister was the first man to break the 4 minute mile . . .

And on and on it goes.  History is full of firsts.  

I have joined that rarefied air of being “the first” at something.

It all started a few weeks ago when I agreed to clear a friend’s driveway while they were away on a trip.  I didn’t even have to use my own snow blower, although I DO have a VERY nice Cub Cadet with 6 forward and 2 reverse gears, hand warmer grips, treads instead of wheels, in fact the only thing missing is a cup holder for my beer.

But my friend has a nice one too.  A little different, wheels instead of treads and the controls are reversed.  The drive control is on the left and the blower control is on the right. Mine is the opposite.  His doesn’t have a cup holder either.

So when the first snow of the month fell, I dutifully went over to his house and fired up his blower and cleared the snow.  Nice, clean easy, no problems. Then we got that very powdery couple inches, which I dutifully cleared away with just a shovel, because I had done such a good job the first snow.

Then last weekend happened. . .

That’s when we got the freezing rain, then snow on top of it.  And then a little more snow. And then the REALLY COLD temps.

But, no problem, I dutifully went over and broke out his snowblower and started to clean things off.  It was a little more difficult with the winds blowing a mile a minute, and that rain had put a nice slick sheet of ice under the snow.  But I persisted, and was clearing along, when i put the machine in reverse gear to back it up after a pass, and it happened. . .

I stepped onto a slick spot

My feet started doing the “Fred Flintstone” , you know the rapid canter he used to start his car.?

And my instinct took over and I grabbed onto the handles of the snowblower for dear life to try to steady myself.

The problem was, it was in reverse gear and i was holding down on the drive control on the handle.  So naturally, the snowblower kept backing up whilst I maintained a stationary position albeit a frantic footed one.  

Gravity being what it is . . (rhymes with witch) and it is the law . . . I fell backward, still instinctively holding on to the handles in an attempt to stop my fall.  The problem being, the drive control is still on those handles.

And so, gentle readers, I achieved what no one has ever done before, and hopefully will never again . . .

I’m the first person to run himself over with a snowblower.