A collection of short stories and journalistic commentaries depicting my simple life
and how I fit in with the modern day universe of our times

Dear Insurance Company,

I am writing this letter in response to your recent request for some additional information regarding my recent accident claim.

In block number 3 of your accident reporting form, I responded by putting "trying to do the job alone" as the cause of my accident. You said in your letter that I should now explain more fully, and I trust that the following details will be sufficient for this purpose:

As you should by now be aware, I am a general builder by trade. And on the day of the accident, I was working alone on the roof of a new five or six floored building. It could have been higher, but that would have been another storey altogether.

Anyway, I was up there to construct a four foot tall, brick built chimney stack on the roof and when I subsequently completed my work, I discovered that I had about 500 pounds in weight of bricks left over.

Now rather than opting to carry the bricks down the full height of the building by hand, I quickly decided to lower them in a barrel by using a pulley, which fortunately, was attached externally to the side of the building up at the same floor I was working on.

Having initially secured the rope at ground level first, I next went back up to the roof, swung the barrel out and loaded the left over bricks into it. Then I went back to the ground and untied the rope, holding it tight to ensure a slow and safe descent of the 500 pounds of bricks.

You will at this point, please note that, in block number 11 of the accident reporting form, I informed you that I weigh only 155 pounds.

Going Up In The World

Due to my surprise at having been jerked off the ground so suddenly, I lost my presence of mind somewhat and forgot to let go of the rope before it was too late to do anything other than hold on for dear life. Needless to say, I proceeded at a rather rapid rate up the side of the building.

It was then somewhere in the vicinity of the third floor, that I subsequently met with the barrel of bricks coming down. Hopefully this completely explains the fractured skull and broken collarbone.

Slowed only slightly by this collision, I continued my rapid ascent, not stopping until the fingers of my right hand were fully entwined two knuckles deep into the pulley wheel. Fortunately though, by this time, I had somewhat regained my presence of mind and was just about able to hold tightly to the rope in spite of my excruciating pain.

Going Down

At approximately the same time as the mashing of my fingers however, the barrel of bricks had already hit the ground, and the bottom had broken out of the barrel during the sudden impact. And now, devoid of the weighty load of bricks, the barrel alone weighed approximately only fifty pounds.

I refer you again to my weight in the accident reporting form, block number 11.

As you might imagine, I now began a more rapid descent down the side of the building. And in the vicinity of the third floor again, I this time met the barrel coming back up. This is what accounted for the two fractured ankles and the deep lacerations on my legs and lower body.

This second encounter with the barrel however, slowed me enough to somewhat lessen my injuries when I fell onto the pile of spare bricks below, and fortunately, only three of my vertebrae were cracked and one leg was broken in the process.

I am sorry to report, however, that as I lay there, now slumped on the bricks in considerable pain, unable to stand or even move for that matter, and watching the empty barrel dangling six stories above me... I again lost my presence of mind... and let go of the bloody rope!

And Just Like The Titanic... It Went Down Well

It was therefore literally only seconds before my face and chest took the full impact of that rapidly falling barrel. And this was when I sustained the last of my injuries, a broken nose and jaw, three or four severely chipped and loosened teeth and three broken ribs.

Please forgive me for the time it has taken to respond to your request as I have spent a considerable amount of time in my local hospital recovering and even now, I find it still difficult to write to the extent I was once able.


Now I’m not for one minute trying to explain my recent absence by any means as spectacular as all this, but the simple truth of the matter is my shoulder has ‘done gone snapped again’. And some of that pain depicted in the introductory piece was not too dissimilar to the real life pain I have just been through again. Certainly, enough pain to warrant another stay in hospital.

It seems the body beautiful simply cannot cope with its 48 year old frame any longer which now leaves me to sit and fully ponder a future away from my boys (tools) and seriously look into other avenues of earning a crust.

But in the meantime, I would just like to take this opportunity to personally thank everybody for the wonderful birthday messages you all sent me and offer a special thank you to all those that have emailed me good wishes during my absence.

And for a certain special someone out there... Thanks for the great read you sent me.

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Its my own fault really, its all about what I see in the world, and how it all translates for me.

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