I’m a firefighter, and while we had a minor fire today, it wasn’t there that my life nearly ended. Our department has a fireboat. It’s a beautiful piece of equipment, probably worth two or three million dollars. Supposedly, there’s a class coming up soon, where I can be a certified fireboat sailor of sorts. The class would cost me thousands of dollars as a civilian. The department will train me at no cost. I also signed on to become a rescue diver, and I’m just waiting for a class to start. That’s another certification worth thousands that won’t cost me a dime. I can’t wait!
In the meantime, I accompany the guys in the house who are certified, and we occasionally perform maintenance checks. The boat has a few hatches here and there where the mechanical parts can be reached for various maintenance checks. Today, we had to babysit a boat mechanic as he checked various parts, so I was sitting in the captain’s chair with a coworker in the navigator’s seat, and as there was nothing for us to do, we were shootin’ the shit about Guitar Hero III when my other MANIAC coworker got jealous. My other coworkers and myself nicknamed him “The Maniac” because we’re convinced he has HDAD. His relationships with many people are strained because he doesn’t know how to just take a step back, breathe, and be reasonable. On top of that, he has what I refer to as “Little Brother’s Disease”. He’s the baby of his family, and even though he’s five years my senior, he acts like a baby. He acts as if he wishes I were his little brother, and gets extremely jealous if I speak to one coworker in particular. They’ve had two semi-physical confrontations in the past.
Now back to the near-death experience. I was talking to one coworker, when The Maniac grew jealous. The Maniac was asked by our captain to carry some stuff to the back of the boat. It was nothing he couldn’t have done by himself, but being that I was talking to someone else, he decides to delegate the minor job onto me. He hands me the stuff while I’m not even looking at him, which I found rather rude and told him so. But I grabbed it from him anyway to prevent having to argue over nothing with this baby for the umpteenth time, and took a step around the captain’s seat, forgetting that the hatch was still open.
My left leg fell in the hole and what broke my fall was my head cracking against a permanently set table. As comical as the fall was, I could have easily broken my neck. So now I have a big, ugly bruise on my hip, a knot on my head the size of another smaller head, and the instep of my left foot is sore.
Of course, The Maniac goes into big brother mode and blames me for my fall, and while I should have kept my bearings with my surroundings, I wouldn’t have fallen in if he wouldn’t have not gotten jealous like a baby because he didn’t have my undivided attention – which he needs AT ALL TIMES! As we were leaving the boat, I informed him he’s “on punishment” for two working days, not because of the lump on my head, but because I could’ve broken my neck, all because he’s a baby. And he only understands me when I talk to him as if he were a baby. It’s a totally pathetic situation, I know.
So yeah, I almost died today.