Pathologically Repetitive Mistakes (Who I Am)

Written by Mike Greene Published: 03 July 2018

Sometimes I’m an idiot.  And the frequency seems to be increasing…

I’m no stranger to lower back problems. I’ve had sciatica that led to surgery, repeated sciatica again, thankfully clearing up through physical therapy.  And I continue to deal with lower back pain to this day. Much like some of you.

And yet…

About 2 years ago I was using the pull-up bar in the doorway to our utility closet.  This closet happens to have the water line that feeds the pressure tank directly from the well.  It’s the first point of entry into our home. And that’s important.

For whatever reason, while doing a few pull-ups, I decided to pull up hard and switch my hands. Again, what an idiot! Do you know what happens when you have a pull-up bar in the doorway and you release the pressure? Yep, that’s right, no pressure, and no stability.  I was sailing in the air immediately – in a fast downward and highly awkward motion. I hit the pressure gauge on the pressure tank – hard against my back ribs – and instantly, the flood erupted.  Not a drizzle or simple water leak. This was a full out, high pressure and constant explosion of water. I was soaked, and by the time I figured out to turn the well pump off at the fuse (another story there) and the tank was finally emptied, the utility closet had several inches of water in it. 

Remarkably, with my wife and son’s quick action, they managed to build a pretty good levy around the closet entrance, keeping much of the water at bay.   Despite having to run fans for a week, the carpet survived, as well as the closet and even my back. Though I’m pretty sure I broke or bruised a few ribs.

I could look for and develop a variety of lessons from this.  But as I reflected on the situation, I realize or just choose to believe, that this is who I am.  I can work to be more prepared, more cautious and maybe a little more proactive – knowing what to do right away when I break my fall with pipes!  And I do strive to do all that.  I really do – trying to minimize my own weakness.

But in reality, this is who I am, and I just lean into it. Somehow there is a strength in here – one that probably was the catalyst to help me step into entrepreneurship over that last ten years.

By the way, I managed to repeat the situation a few months later.  Somehow, I managed to release the pressure on the bar and down I went.  But this time I had a folded yoga mat that sort of broke my fall, and a board in place that protected the pressure gauge and piping.

You’ve heard the phrase, “Ready, aim, fire!”  For me, it’s almost always just “Fire!”