Monday, March 06, 2006


On Saturday I bought a neat little chest of drawers from one of the local charity shops. I saw it in the morning but didn't immediately buy it. Later that day I realised that it would be a useful thing in which to store my art supplies, so I went back to the store to get it. There was a young couple standing near it, talking on a mobile, and when I pointed it out to the shop assistant the wife let out a little cry, and actually stamped her foot in frustration. I guess they'd been calling for someone to bring them some cash to buy it.

Too bad, I thought. There's only the quick and the dead in the charity shop bargains game, as I've learnt from being on the 'dead' side of the equation more than once. Of course, I might not have been quite so smug if I'd realised that this fairly innocuous piece of furniture was CURSED.

That's right; I'd just purchased the Drawers of Doom.

The first sign of the furniture's malevolence was visited upon me when I started stripping off the weird layer of Vegemite-like varnish that someone had slathered over a layer of white enamel paint. I had a new tin of paint stripper, sealed with a soft plastic underlid that had to be opened with a rubbery ringpull. And as ringpulls are wont to do when the seal breaks and the inner and outer pressures equalise, it caused a spurt of paint stripper to spray up into my face.

An extremely caustic spurt of paint stripper.

It's a miracle that none of it went in my eyes. It started burning, severely, a second or two after it hit, as if I'd been stung by a swarm of bees. I ran inside, uttering cries of "Ow!" at increasing volume, and stuck my face under a cold shower, which saturated my clothes but at least got the burning down to a dull tang.

Game on, Mr Drawers, I thought. You've drawn first blood. But I have a) paint stripper, b) a paint brush and c) opposable thumbs, all of which I used in my vengeance. Once safely out of the can and onto the drawers, the pain stripper worked a treat. It turned the varnish and paint into something not unlike a thick smear of soft butter.

But little did I know that the Drawers of Doom had only just begun their sinister work.

This morning I happened to wake up early, and decided to spend a few minutes trying to get the ugly wooden knobs off the drawers. They'd been fitted with wooden plugs rather than screws, so the only way to get them off was t0 saw them off. I cut the first one off, and was rewarded with a very nice clean result. I tackled the other one, paying careful attention so as not to scratch the wood. So much careful attention, in fact, that I wasn't prepared when the knob suddenly snapped and the saw plunged down, straight into the side of my thumb.

Even before I looked at it I knew it was bad, just from the pain. Looking only made it worse. The blood paused at the wound, like a hesitant debutante at the threshold of her first cotillion, then came out in what I thought to be an overeager rush.

There followed much running about the house, spreading my lifeblood across every surface. I eventually fashioned a bandage out of tightly wrapped paper towels and a rubber band, which slowed and soaked up the blood loss. Even so, when I caught sight of myself in a mirror I looked like I'd been bleached.

I felt well enough to drive to the hospital where I work, leave a message for my boss with one of the secretaries, then stagger down to the Emergency Department.

The triage nurse in the ED looked up at me from the magazine she was reading as if I'd burst unannounced into her living room. The gall of some people, she appeared to be thinking, turning up wanting medical attention at 8.30 in the morning. She did however dress my wound in something more hygienic that paper towels and a rubber band that was last used to secure a bunch of bok choy.

It took an hour to see an actual doctor, but once I did it was all cleaned up and repaired reasonably quickly. The wound was deep but there wasn't any nerve or tendon damage. All it needed was four stitches, and a tetanus shot in my arm.

I went back up to my office and worked for a while, but I felt like crap so I eventually went home early. Of course when I got there the entire house was filled with the sour, wet dog-like smell of dried blood. There were blood spatters on the hardwood floors and the bathroom tiles, bloodied washcloths and paper towels in the bathroom sink, little smears of blood on some clean T-shirts I'd rifled through looking for a handkerchief to staunch the bleeding, and a bigger smear on my bedsheets where I'd lain for a moment. It looked like I'd spent the morning butchering backpackers.

All because of evil drawers.

So, if worst comes to worst, and this turns out to be my last blog entry, you'll know why. Whatever you do just don't buy the half-restored chest of drawers in my estate sale.


Blogger phaedrus said...

1st comment on blandwagon's last post. Booyah!

But seriously, ouch, dude. Sounds like you don't need paint thinner, just some holy water. That'll peel the paint/evil demonic presence right off of it.

1:08 PM  
Blogger MC Etcher said...

When (and if) you survive restoring The Drawers of Ultimate Evil, post a pic!

1:48 AM  
Blogger Jege (Jen) said...

Is it wrong that I laughed my ass off at this? It is? Oh well. See you in Hell (I'll be seated near the bar....and if you want me to save you a spot, speak up now, or you run the risk of ending up next to Bob Saget over by the flay pit).

11:56 PM  
Blogger Cookster said...

By Christ Bland, be careful son! Get the bastard drawers outside, douse them with lighter fluid and burn baby burn... on second thoughts, maybe just put them on the front verge and hope that someone takes them away.

Couple a weeks ago I stabbed myself in the thumb nail with the stem of a broken champagne glass - no eveil this time, just drunk...

1:47 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home