Monday, June 30, 2014

Monday Morning Stories With Mookie - Episode 121

The Time Mookie Was Hit With A Bottle Rocket

In honor of both the upcoming Fourth of July holiday and my friend "Rick's*" birthday, I present to you this lovely tale of a fireworks outing that went awry at my expense.

One early evening on the back patio of Rick's parents' house, a group of us had just had a nice dinner on the grill and were enjoying a few adult beverages. As per usual, we were all making fun of one another, telling "your mom" jokes, and generally having a good laugh. It wasn't long until Rick decided to liven up the evening a bit more and broke out his stash of fireworks.

Bottle rockets, firecrackers, roman candles, and other miscellaneous items were launched off the patio into the back yard by all of us. All was going well until Rick decided to make things we called "chasers." A "chaser" is a bottle rocket that has had the stick removed. You set the rocket itself on the ground and light it there. The absence of the stick makes the rocket quite unstable and fairly erratic. Most of the time it just shot across the pavement in the direction it was pointed, and into the grass where it exploded a few seconds later. Occasionally it would change course mid-flight and take off in another direction, but nothing too hazardous. FYI: If you are the Mel Gibson-type, you may have heard these called something where you insert a certain racial slur in front of the word "chasers" - although we did NOT do this.

As each person took turns letting off random fireworks, the rest of us were sitting around the table watching and talking trash. For some reason, Rick continued his "chaser" activities even though he was seated at the table. He started off by just setting them on the ground below his chair and pointing them away from the table as he lit them. Apparently he got bored with this, because then he started lighting them and THROWING them out into the yard nearby from his chair. While most of them just sat in the grass while they fired and exploded, there were one or two actually got out of the grass and errantly took off out into the yard. Again nothing seemed to hazardous, and we even joked about one of the chasers coming back at the table.

Well, one did.

I watched Rick light the fuse of a chaser and then throw it out into the grass from his chair. The next thing I knew was that I had a chaser rocket coming RIGHT at me in my chair and I had no where to go. The chaser hit me in the stomach, and of course my natural reaction was to yell and jump out of the chair. I believe the words "OH SHIT!" were yelled by everyone around the table - especially myself. When the chaser hit me, it immediately burned a hole in my shirt and tried to continue its trajectory THROUGH me. When I jumped up, I immediately un-tucked my shirt and tried to get this thing out of it. Not only was it burning me, but I did not want this thing EXPLODING inside my shirt next to my skin. I stood there flagging my shirt like a madman for what seemed like forever, even though it was probably only 2 seconds. Finally the chaser fell out of my shirt, and just as it hit the ground - it exploded. Everyone sitting there had watched the whole thing, and I watched their eyes go from the just-exploded rocket on the ground up to my face that was surrounded by smoke that was still coming out of the neck, sleeves, and the newly-burned hole in the shirt.Then everyone LOST it and started laughing - including myself.

Due to me flagging my shirt like a hysterical girl (and probably screaming like one), the burns to my torso were thankfully fairly light and didn't amount to much short of a small blister. To his credit, Rick was quite apologetic about it and did feel bad that he pretty much set me on fire. However, like a good friend - he did his share of laughing after he figured out I was OK.

The dick still owes me a shirt though.

Rick - Happy Birthday.
Everyone else - Have a safe Fourth of July, and stay out of the way of those errant fireworks. Its all fun and games until you get a bottle rocket in your shirt.

Miss a previous episode? Click HERE to catch up!

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