John Burns His Own Stupid Foot

An Excerpt from John Cowart’s Journal:


John W. Cowart

John Burns His Stupid Foot -- Thursday, April 1, 1999:

Spent the day cleaning up the yard extra good for Easter.

I was up on a ladder trimming vines with the electric hedge trimmer and smoking my pipe at the same time. To reach a difficult place, I started to put my pipe away and stretched down to tap it out on the heel of my left boot, a habitual practice.

A ladder is not the best place to do this.

 I missed my own heel.

As I knocked my pipe out, the dottle, the lump of red hot charcoal left in the bottom of the bowl as a residue of burning tobacco, fell into the top of my boot. It was still as hot as a charcoal briquette. Intense pain.

Of course, I was wearing high top boots instead of my usual canvas slip-ons as a safety measure because I planned to be running the lawnmower; so it took me a while to cut off the power trimmer, climb down from the ladder, unlace the boot, pull it off and crush out the burning coal.

My sock had caught fire!

Horrible pain.

It burned a hole the size of a quarter in the side of my ankle, burned it right down to raw flesh. I think I could see the surface of my ankle bone in there. I nearly fainted. I believe I went into shock. Intense pain

Thank God that Ginny caught a ride home from work and I did not have to walk to meet her this afternoon.

The comment of my sympathetic, compassionate wife as she bandaged my wound this evening:… “Oh well, John, the Surgeon General has warned you that smoking can be hazardous to your health”.


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