Monday, August 24, 2009

the perils of a canadian summer

My sister found an article in a Canadian Living magazine (tucked between a pemmican recipe and a feature on resoling skidoo boots) offering health and safety tips for the Canadian summer.

In addition to advice on coping with bee stings, food poisoning, and poison ivy, the editors included some helpful words on what to do if you CUT YOUR FOOT OFF WITH THE LAWN MOWER (emphasis mine, the editors gave it no more play than the bee stings or the rusty nail punctures).

Curious to know how common summer lawn mower-induced foot loss is, I consulted Stats Canada, and discovered their lighthearted "Summer by the Numbers" section. While they don't keep track of power lawn mower-related injuries, they do track deaths, and in 2004 (the most recent year for which numbers were available) these totaled 1. (Making lawn mowers as big a threat as lightning strikes).

Canada did, however, have 58,945 acres of sod in need of mowing in 2006, so it's not hard to imagine some portion of that acreage littered with severed feet.

I took the precaution of ensuring I never mowed the lawn and, as a result, have returned from vacation with both my feet.

Thank you, Canadian Living!


Tokyo Sexwale said...

Other Canada-specific summertime threats to life and limb, all of which Mary has been menaced with over the years:

1. Rush concert stampedes
2. Enjoying too much B.C. bud, which I don’t really understand, but which I assume has something to do with that hysterical comic strip about the caveman
3. Scratches and scrapes suffered while trimming one’s beaver
4. Trans-Canada bus trip beheadings
5. Beaverticulitis
6. Shotgun marriages to 16-year-old Portu-rican men who make their brides dress up like Jonbenet Ramsey; shotgun, even though both the bride and groom are innocent virgins (or as innocent as a 16-year-old Portu-rican man can be)
7. Being pick-pocketed by one of the hundreds of thousands of Czech Roma who’ve taken their criminal stylings to Canada in 2009 alone
8. A nearly complete absence of be-prison-muscled African-North Americans

maire said...

wow, you read that same issue!