He had his own workshop where he repaired and restored furniture, so there was a lot of tools lying around.
As a boy, I was always helping out in the shop after school of course. In reality I was probably just in the way. I should have read the signals he was sending, as he was constantly asking me to make coffee. How much coffee can an adult drink, I thought?
This is how tough he was:
- As a furniture upholsterer, he used a staple-gun, which at its peak could shoot out 5 staples a second. I clocked it myself, much to the frustration of my dad. Anyway, most of the tasks my dad was doing, involved the staple-gun. Most tasks included shooting staples into the furniture in straight lines. After a while, this quickly became a routine skill. One day, he was shooting staples into a nice sofa, and he suddenly cursed LOUDLY, as you do. He was uttering words and languages from the dark ages, the time of Mordor. I looked over and discovered to my horror that he had inserted 2-3 staples into his thumb. There was blood everywhere and I was feeling lightheaded. To my amazement, he grabbed his screwdriver and dug out (literally) the staples. He then wrapped his bloody finger with some old fabric and secured it with gaffer tape. You can use gaffer tape for everything!
- Another time, while making some high quality leather cushions for a client, using thick leather, he was sewing the cushions into shape. Because of the leather’s thickness, the “foot” and needle of the industrial sewing machine was slightly raised. He was speeding through the cushions and suddenly he cursed LOUDLY (again). The goblins in the attic probably feared that the Dark Lord had returned to rule Middle Earth. His finger was somewhat stuck to the sewing machine with the needle stuck in the nail. He calmly reversed the needle, removed his bloody finger and made a standard wrapping; old dirty fabric and gaffer tape.
- My dad knew his tools and rarely replaced them. Any new tool would take weeks or months to be worn in, so he preferred his old tools. His scissors was probably 20 years old, but sharp as any butcher’s knife. He used it every day. I sometime wonder if he was related to Edward Scissors Hand. Anyway, it was a warm summer’s day and he was cutting fabric for some curtains using his Rambo scissors. He was obviously annoyed by something, because he was constantly waiving his hand at something. I soon realised it was an annoying bee. Suddenly with lightning speed and accuracy he clipped with his scissors into the air and smiled at me. I looked down on the white fabric. There was the bee in two pieces. That’s when I realized that he was an undercover ninja or special ops guy.
I don’t know how many times he injured himself during the line of duty, as a furniture upholsterer and as a DIY dad. But, he never showed any sign of pain other than cursing LOUDLY. It wouldn’t be appropriate for me to repeat any of the words, but it was rated PG-25.
I too have been injured during my line of business which normally is restricted to severe paper cuts. There’s nothing worse than feeling the fine edge of a piece of paper cutting through the outer skin just touching the nerve system. This just make me scream of pain, like a little school boy tripping on the asphalt.
Or imagine bumping your leg or hip against a piece of furniture. It brings me to my knees and tears start building up.
I do believe I’m a tough guy. I can touch a nettle without screaming and I don’t yell too loudly when I get bitten by a mosquito.
The only thing that lets my male ego down is the sight of my own blood. If I do end up cutting myself, which has happened of course, with a sharp knife, then I will 9 out of 10 times pass out.
No need to laugh here. We are talking about cuts that require at least a large bandage, or perhaps two.
So. How tough is/was your dad? And what’s your worst work related injury?
Please, if you are planning on telling stories about war or missing limps, then please state this in the first paragraph. Otherwise I’ll pass out while reading your comment.
By the way, my dad is tougher than your dad!