Death by Pound Puppy


When I was about 5 years old, my mom decided to drop me off with my aunt at her office while she did business in town. As my aunt worked in the District 10 Department of Highways in Jackson, Kentucky, her job was utterly regular and somewhat dull unless something extraordinary happened-->lots of overtime, somebody got fired, that sort of thing.


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 As it was the middle of summer, nothing like that happened. Anyway, my mom rented a VHS video of Pound Puppies and dropped me off.  My Aunt took me to the big conference room in the middle of the cinder-block building and plopped me in front of the television, daring me to move.

Of course, I moved.  I was a fat, indolent kid, but curious as hell.  The room was fascinating--there was a huge map on the wall showing the toll plaza at Slade, Kentucky, an IBM PC/XT with a Daisy Wheel printer in the corner, and the TV itself.  The TV was a pretty big jobber for back then--probably 25", and atop it sat this massive VHS VCR, pride of 1984.  I thought the TV stand was interesting too, as it seemed to have a hinge...

Yeah, it wasn't a TV stand.  It was a drafting table, jury-rigged to support the television.  I did a few practice arm-ups on the thing and by the 3rd one, it tilted at an unexpected 50 degree angle.  The television slid off, catching me square in the torso, and the VCR was smack in my face.  The whole works probably weighed 90 pounds, and I had most of it against me.  I couldn't push it back up, and I was struggling to keep it where it was.  Once gravity had its way with my (lack of) muscles, I thudded to the floor, TV atop me.  Pound Puppies--the episode where they had a dog from a firehouse who tried to squirt water on everything--was still playing.

That's right.  I was dying by bad 1980's cartoon.  Fitting, considering how much time I spent in front of the TV. In hell, I'd get the same, only it'd be "Three's Company" with me not realizing Jack was gay.

Anyway, I managed to lever the TV off me and plop it tube first (yeah, still playing) on the ground.  I gained my feet and considered my options.  Never seeing my aunt again seemed paramount; she wouldn't kill me, but she had an evil, witchy voice when she was pissed that made you wish for some stones to cover you.  I thought for a minute of running out and finding my mom.  I considered crawling back under the TV, just for the "he's not dead" relief to cushion the "You're about to get fired from a cushy state job" reality.

Don't remember how, but I think I shuffled the 25 feet back to her office, walked her down to see the TV, bore her hysterics on how I'd screwed-up, the bore her explanation to my Mom on what happened.

We did get the VHS video back to Radio Shack on time, as I recall.  My aunt didn't lose her job.  I don't think I spent much time at District 10 after that.

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