Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Sledgehammer: Man versus MEGASHED - A Tale of Mirth and Woe

I bought a house a few years ago, where the previous owner had an obsession with two things: Leylandia trees and garden buildings. The back yard was a forest of Leylandia, which were pulled out of the ground and chopped up over a period of several months, and there were no fewer than four sheds.

Thanks to a slash-and-burn policy, we soon ended up with a pretty acceptable garden, and I was set to work on demolishing the fourth shed at the top of the garden, which we had christened MEGASHED. It was huge. Previous Irish Owner had built it himself out of huge sheets of plywood and it stood well over ten feet tall and might have doubled up as a squash court if it were not such a bloody craphole.

After getting the doors and a few of the side panels off through brute force and a crowbar, I wondered if there might be a quicker way to finish the job, all the time eyeing up one of the huge lengths of four-by-four holding the thing up.

I selected my biggest sledgehammer, and with main strength, knocked out one of the corner supports with a single blow. Then, a couple of hefty swings took out another, as nails and other low-quality fixings pinged about me.

In retrospect, I should have stopped there, taken the roof off and perhaps a couple of now unsupported walls. But I did not. Instead, I lined up with a third corner support, felt rather satisfied with the thunk as it fell ago, almost immediately taken over by fear, darkness and agony as the entire structure folded in on itself like the final scene from Poltergeist.

I lay there for some time on the concrete floor, considering my folly. Then, shouted for help, and it came. Eventually.

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