2007 Reader Submission
ACCEPTED INTO THE ARCHIVE
A man was splitting seasoned wood early one Autumn in preparation of the oncoming winter. One after the other, he would set the logs on end and drive his sharpened axe through the log, then toss the split wood onto the pile. He was making light work of the pile when he came to a log particularly large in diameter. Feeling overzealous, he decided to attempt to split the log anyway.
He lined up his shot, and brought the axe down dead-center to the particularly girthy log, only to bury the axe blade deep into the wood without splitting it. With a swift action, he jerked up on the handle to free the axe for another swing. In doing so, the log scooted forward about a foot before the axe broke free. Rather than moving the heavy log back into place, the man moved forward a foot to take another swing.
The second swing was met with the same result as the first, as was the third attempt, the fourth attempt, and so on, and the entire scenario was repeated over and over again. In his relentless determination to split the unforgiving log, and his frustration at not being able to do so, the man hadn't noticed that he and the log had traveled a distance some twenty-five feet or so across the yard, and were now positioned beheath the clothes-line. As he brought the axe down for another attempt to split the log, the axe head caught the clothes-line, which then acted in the same manner as drawing back on a bow string. The axe head barely touched the top of the unsplittable log when the clothes-line reached its maximum draw, propelling the axe head back toward the man at an ungodly velocity, and finding its mark... right between his eyes. Fortunately, the axe hadn't spun around in his hands, and the blunt side of the axe head made the contact, collapsing his sinus and fracturing his skull, rather than killing him with the blade side. He recovered, and learned a very important lesson; Always be intensely aware of your surroundings when hurling a sharp object through the air with great force. I KNOW this story to be true, because the man I speak of was... me.
Submitted on 09/01/2007
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