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This is a question Lucky Escapes

Freddie Woo says: Looking back on it, the moment when we left the road because I was trying to get the demister to work, regaining control just in time to miss a tree probably wasn't my finest bit of driving, nor my cleanest pair of pants. Tell us about your lucky escapes

(, Thu 4 Jul 2013, 15:44)
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This question is now closed.

I was going to spend twenty minutes typing a long, drawn-out pun.
I doubt that I'll have time to complete it before the question closes, so luckily, you've all escaped!
(, Thu 11 Jul 2013, 13:03, 5 replies)
Innocent 'summer branch drop'? Or were the trees out to get us? You decide.
Years ago I was out on my pushbike with my youngest, who was about 4, on the kid-seat on the back. It was hot and I was wheeling the bike along a hilly village pavement when Junior pointed out a tree across the road that was moving.

I stopped so we could watch, and we saw a large high-up branch slowly bend downwards and snap off. It fell, catching on other branches on the way down, and seemed to take ages to hit the ground.

We chatted about it for a minute, as you do with little kiddies, before I set off pushing the bike again.

About thirty seconds later, we heard a huge CRASH! and looked around to see what looked like half a bloody tree lying across the pavement and into the road, exactly where we'd stopped. If we'd stayed longer it would've hit us.

But if the first branch hadn't dropped we'd have been well away anyway. Can't help thinking there was a dastardly tree-plot afoot. Or aroot.
(, Thu 11 Jul 2013, 8:41, 1 reply)
Trickster god in superhero black market wardrobe shocker
The Man of Steel's initial claims to have developed his armour using proprietary Krypton technology were debunked today when journalists uncovered a receipt from the firm of Loki 'S' Capes.
(, Thu 11 Jul 2013, 7:18, 28 replies)
In which stuff nearly explodes, but has shag-all to do with me.
When I was a young Thos. Bent, one of my dad's friends worked for the railways in the 1980's as a flagman alerting oncoming trains to the presence of trackworkers and trackworkers to the presence of oncoming trains.

He liked to drink (as pretty much everyone who worked in railways seemed to in those days, and was standing out there, flag and light and slab of beer equipped, in the middle of winter. The tracks that they had fixed involved removing wooden sleepers and stacking them by the side of the tracks, so he gets a bright idea and decides to create a nice warm bonfire.

As the fire gets going and creates a nice warm feeling, he notices that there's a little sign not far away.

DANGER, GAS AND OIL PIPELINE it reads, as he looks over and sees how close the fire is to said pipeline.

The fire was put out, and I think it scared him enough to stop drinking for about a half an hour.
(, Thu 11 Jul 2013, 4:59, Reply)
Something about wanking, earphones and a cup of tea.
Oh, and my mum.
(, Thu 11 Jul 2013, 1:02, 3 replies)
I had a yacht built and was out sailing when the
yacht started to very badly take on water. Fortunately, mainly because I am ace and a brilliant sailor, I managed to man the bilge pump and navigate the yacht to safe harbour. Obviously, I was furious at the lucky escape, I say lucky but I am brilliant and well ace, and drove my Ford Accord (rare model) to the boatyard to have it out with these marine fuckers. To no avail, I arrived and the yard was empty. This outfit were Ply-by-nights.

tldr - me neither
(, Wed 10 Jul 2013, 21:31, 4 replies)
Nitrous Oxide
I went to a party dressed in clear plastic. I had stolen a bottle of N2O, and had it sitting in my passenger seat. My car was a very fast Datsun 510 turbo. Fast for 1979. But fast enough that when I took a giant hit off the bottle, and accelerated onto the freeway, I managed to pass out from the gas, and cartwheel down the freeway while unconscious, for a few hundred yards. This is all without a seatbelt. I woke up with the car on it's side, still holding onto the steering wheel. Somehow I wasn't thrown from the car, or even injured by a heavy tank of gas. I did have a concussion. And at 3am in the morning, I managed to find a security guard to drive me home. I can only imagine what the guy must have thought, seeing me jump an 8 foot fence and run towards him in clear plastic. I still wonder why I'm alive.
(, Wed 10 Jul 2013, 21:06, 9 replies)
A previous girlfriend of mine Lou does impressions, but really quite badly.
Yes - Lucy (ex) apes.
(, Wed 10 Jul 2013, 15:34, 9 replies)
Eaten by Crocs
Back in 2000, when traveling around Australia, my skint friends and I arrived in Innisfail with no money and no food. We exchanged our passports for a nights refuge and promptly set off in the search of some scran. Due to severe lack of funds, we whipped out the fishing rods from out trusty steed and set about trying to catch our evening meal. Whilst two of my pals sat on the pier, Sam and I decided to venture down onto the banks and have a little swim and a paddle. After 10-15mins of frolicking our pier based companions exclaimed they had caught something. We promptly climbed back up the bank and assisted in the reeling in and netting of our meal.
Whilst we sat there basking in our man skills and ability to 'live off the land' a grubby looking local approached and asked us 'Are you fuckers stupid enough to have been swimming in there?'
'Why yes, we are of limited enough intelligence to consider swimming in such a place-why?"
He then proceeded to inform us that we are the luckiest fuckers on earth as the river we chose to swim was not only a tidal estuary containing the uber lethal and aggressive salt water crocodiles but it was also quite common for people to witness dorsal fins of rather large sharks in there too.
We were understandably a little shaken by this news, but not as shaken as we were then next day when we walked along the road looking down onto the small beach where me and Sam spent 10-15 mins paddling and swimming and there basking in the sun were 5, 6-7 metre long salt water crocodiles. We had essentially been swimming around above and with these massive killers and we didn't have a scooby. That was our lucky escape.
(, Wed 10 Jul 2013, 13:45, 8 replies)
My wife is from poland.
Which is were I'm currently holed up at the minute. Chatting with some of her friends I mentioned the QOTW topic. Dawid told me about his car crash.

In poland now and even more so back in the day the majority of cars here are 200000 miles young and generously flecked with dust. It's a tribute to their commitment to keeping the cars running but the stopping parts tend to lose out.

Dawid was on his journey home and approaching the gentle bend roungly 100mtrs from his house. His car a newish Sciecento or whatever its called. He was the only one without a belt on in the packed tiny car. Approaching the bend the car careered sideways into the forest tumbling.

Dawid said he had seen the car tip and was suddenly looking at the car roll into the forest. Everyone in the car had minor injuries bar him who managed to be thrown out the window and onto his ass.
(, Wed 10 Jul 2013, 12:25, 4 replies)
So, we were rehearsing for the battle of the bands, and death challenged us to gamble for our own immortal souls.
We won, and it was all OK in the end, luckily.
(, Wed 10 Jul 2013, 10:40, 2 replies)
Final Destination - Bolton
A reasonably happy few years studying Civil Engineering and Architectural Technology in Bolton during the late 90s was intermittently interrupted by the following:

3 muggings, last one of which I was on the wrong end of a knife.
2 occasions where I was on the wrong end of a car bonnet, both hit and runs.
and 1 occasion on 15th June 96, where a few of us decided to have a day's drinking in Manchester. Due to typical student deficiency toward punctuality in the mornings, we were later than planned in getting a train from Bolton to Manchester, and ended up arriving shortly after the IRA had decided to blow the shit out of the Arndale Centre.
We go straight back to Bolton, and end up staying at the station most of the day helping people travelling back, some - understandably - in shock, and a few carrying cuts and bruises.

Death has a holiday home in Bolton, and I shall (probably) never go back there, just in case.

Also, due to suffering from these bastards, as a number of b3tans already know, I'm fairly lucky not to have injured myself severely over the past 10 years or so while going through a cycle. (which I currently am) It has come close a few times.

tl;dr unlucky man escapes knives, cars and bombs, and has headaches afterward.
(, Wed 10 Jul 2013, 10:32, Reply)
When we were about 11 or 12, my friend's dad had bought him a nice bow and arrow for his birthday, so we went out to the field near his to shoot at thistles.
It was his turn to go and collect the arrows, when I discovered I had one left.

"Hey!" I shouted, "I've got one left!"

Having collected the other arrows, he turned and struck a crucifix pose, daring me to shoot at him.

Considering that my previous performance suggested a barn door/shovel-like quality, I pulled back and fired.

The arrow hit him square in the chest, and bounced perfectly off his sternum, causing him to double up in pain, crying.

Half an inch either way and I would be the original John Venables or something.
(, Wed 10 Jul 2013, 8:54, 7 replies)
Vale Fluffy
I was slow to the whole First Car thing, mainly because I'd been driving on a farm since I was 9 which diminished the novelty, and because my Dad was adamant that I didn't need a car if I moved to a flat near Uni. Which was great if the only place I ever needed to go was Uni, but less great if I had to go into town to buy groceries, or go to work. I'm amazed that I managed with irregular buses and shanks pony until I was 22.

My patience and stupidity gave me the chance to save up for my first car, a 1996 Hyundai Excel, for which I paid the gargantuan sum of $6000 AUD. She was all tinted windows and no aircon. I was now able to travel halfway across the state to visit my parents, and make the occasional adventure to Melbourne, which was AMAAH-ZING! I even drove to Wagga Wagga once, just because I could. I was young, single, and unencumbered, and driving was still fun.

And then Fluffy, for that was my car's name, met her tragic and violent demise. On the freeway, doing 110km, heading home from Melbourne in 2006, I was overtaken by a B Double. I'm not sure what happened - either the truck clipped my car as it pulled out, or one of my rear tires popped. Fluffy surged forward, her gearbox screaming that fifth gear was not sufficiently fast enough to match the speed of her wheels. I instinctively braked and she fishtailed, sailing back and forth across both lanes, before sliding of the left side of the road, through an electric fence, and down into a paddock. She rolled three times before she stopped moving.

Four vehicles pulled up on the side of the road to check how dead I was, for which I am immensely grateful. I was hanging upside down in my seatbelt, and the weight of my body meant that the clip couldn't detach from the socket. A very stunned truckie had to reach in and unclip me. He then poured his water bottle over the engine to try and cool it down so that the dry grass didn't catch on fire. Another couple called me an ambulance. I asked the truckie if we could roll the car back onto its wheels, because I had 2 hours of driving left to get home, and I had work in the morning. He didn't realise how serious I was, thank god.

I had a tiny scratch on my right neck, from the seatbelt, and a tiny hole in my good slacks, where they caught on the underside of the dash while I was hanging upside down. I should have been thoroughly dead, or at least very badly injured.

I have a photo of poor Fluffy after the accident, but I don't know how to append it to this post.

(, Wed 10 Jul 2013, 8:45, 16 replies)
A Pearoast from 2008
Aged about 16 Des, his old pal Pete and I went to play 9 holes of golf at a country links.

Pete had a habit of telling stories that just might have been true. His father's old Ford Zephyr would do 100 mph. Well his dad was a motor mechanic so you never knew, there were plenty of "hot" Zephyrs around back then. He broke his collarbone doing a bicycle jump over an earth ramp and pulled other idiot teenage boy stunts. I won't say I didn't either, but I was either lucky or had just enough sense to avoid the really stupid stuff. Pete didn't and ten years later he hadn't changed.

After the 9 holes we decided to explore the road works nearby. No fences to keep nosy teenagers out in those days. Des and Pete went over to look at the machinery and I scrambled to the bottom of the cutting. In a crevice lay a stick of gelignite.

I picked it up and opened my mouth to say "Hey look what I found". Then I remembered Pete was there and gods only knew what he would have done, so I shut my mouth and put it back.
(, Wed 10 Jul 2013, 0:49, Reply)
Not really a close brush with Dr death
but i did sail to Zeebrugge on the Herald of Free Enterprise 4 days before several others only sailed a few hundred yards on it.
Also have a mate who works for Oracle that missed his morning wake up call and was already a good half an hour behind schedule for a meeting, so decided to fake the " I'm ill" routine. A matter of minutes later the first plane hit the twin towers . Different floor but not a good place to have been, i suspect.
(, Tue 9 Jul 2013, 23:01, 15 replies)
Repost: Another pyromaniac chemical adventure
When I was about 12, we went to visit one of my Dad's friends, who was a research chemist. He had loads of good surplus chemical stuff.

Bored with the purple smoke from magnesium shavings + iodine crystals, his son and I decided to try to make gun cotton. This didn't work and we just ended up with messy, glutinous, carbonized crap all covered in concentrated acid.

So, what to do with this stuff?

My friend came up with the obvious answer (I'm sure you have, too): make a standard sugar+nitrate mixture, add some magnesium shavings, stick the acid napalm on top, light it, put a tin can over the top (open end down) and stand on it. OK, says I. The parents are out shopping, let's do it. So he does.

Cue an hour of alternately trying to alleviate hot acid burns by dunking his face in a sink of cold water, and combing the burned clumps of hair out. Once the parents returned, this was inevitably followed by a trip to casualty, while my mum gives me the standard "How can you be so *stupid*" lecture at volume 11 for another full hour.

No permanent damage though, but it was bloody lucky he wore glasses.

Kids - think once. Think twice. Think don't deliberately stand on home-made fireworks made of concentrated sulphuric acid.
(, Tue 9 Jul 2013, 18:25, 5 replies)

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