This post originally ran on September 15th, 2014. Seems like it is still good advice today. I hope you enjoy it.
It’s that time of the year again when certain outdoor chores have to be done in preparation for the coming change of seasons. The weather is finally turning a little cooler, so the projects put off because of the heat can now be done. This list has been inspired by the times I have not paid attention to the Top Ten Things Not to do While Doing Outdoor Work.
The Top Ten Things Not to Do While Working Outdoors
10 If you need to fix or waterproof your outdoor deck, do not start the work after noon. If you do, at best you will have to work past dinner. At worst, you will quit the project only to find yourself doing the work in the snow.
9 If you need to go up on a ladder for anything, do not ask your spouse to spot you at the bottom of the ladder. At best, you may drop a tool that will be regrettable. At worst, your spouse may find themselves breaking your fall, which will be unforgivable.
8 If you need to use a power tool, do not forget the safety glasses. If you do, at best, you may get some debris in your eye. At worst, you might just get an exciting ride to the emergency room for significant eye repair.
7 If you need to use a chainsaw, do not try to saw off anything over your head. If you do, at best, you may not be able to avoid a falling limb. At worst, you may find yourself trying to avoid a swinging chainsaw running at full speed.
6 If you need to paint anything, do not think a spray gun is a way to go if you have no experience. If you do, at best, you may find the job harder than you expected. At worst, you may have covered the trees, shrubs, and your car with the beautiful coral shade you are using.
5 If you decide to rent any kind of machinery to do your work, do not fail to read the directions. If you do forget or decide to ignore them, at best, you may cause the machine to break down. At worst, you may find yourself and your machine in the living room when you actually intended to work on the driveway.
4 If you need to use any kind of grease on your project, do not fail to take off your shoes before entering the house. If you do forget, at best, you might only have one small piece on your shoe. At worst, you will have walked all the way through the snow-white living room before you notice your tracks and hear the sound of a gun being cocked.
3 If you intend to fix any plumbing, do not forget to turn off the water. If you do forget, at best, you will get a face full and be drenched before you go and turn it off. At worst, you will wish you had built an ark before beginning the work and are now watching your belongings wash down the street.
2 If your project includes electrical work, do not forget to turn off the electricity to the item you are working on. If you do forget, at best, you will cause some sparks and then go turn it off. At worst, you will cause an arc of electricity that will melt the tool you are using and permanently clear your sinus while providing you with a full-body hair removal treatment.
1 If you decide to dig in the yard to plant those big trees, do not forget to call the utilities to find out where all the lines are buried. If you do forget, at best, you may accidentally cut your neighbor’s cable, and they are a work-at-home IRS agent. At worst, you may cut more important lines and assume you survive you will be fighting the outage charges for the rest of your life.