May 20, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

I feel like people in our circles don’t spend enough time talking about the dangers of technology. We talk about certain dangers, sure, but there are a lot we’re just leaving out.

Take the story of Brad Gauthier—the man in Massachusetts who, this past January, swallowed his air pod in his sleep.

The man didn’t even realize this right away. He woke up in the morning, and the first thing he noticed was that one of his air pods was missing. It was probably a lot like when you wake up in the morning and your yarmulke is missing and you really have to get moving, and cannot concentrate on finding it because you have to go, and you’re pulling out the bed, and you’re pushing it back, and you’re throwing sheets and pillows everywhere, and finally, you yell, “Aah!” and you throw an extra pair of shorts on your head so you can get your day started.

This scenario was probably similar. He wakes up in the morning, and he’s throwing pillows everywhere, and he can’t concentrate on finding his air pod because he has something stuck in his throat, and he finally says, “Aah!” and he goes out to shovel snow.

That’s what he did. He came back an hour later, at which point his wife and teenage son were up, and he asked them for help finding his air pod.

“Where did you last see it?” his wife wanted to know.

“I CHM! Definitely wore it to CHM! bed last night,” he replied. “CHM!”

He knew that he’d worn them to bed, because he’d wanted to avoid waking his 6-month-old daughter. And his wife; in that order. And also because he definitely had the other one in his ear when he woke up.

“Maybe you swallowed it,” his son joked.

Teenagers.

But then after about ten minutes, Brad asked, “Should we maybe go to the hospital?”

It was a good thing he’d just shoveled the car out.

So they went to the hospital, and lo and behold, it showed up in the X-ray. It was like a scene out of Curious George. The doctors said, “Great news! We found the air pod! Also, did you lose a yarmulke?”

And then we have the story from England this past October, titled, “Essex Firefighters Rescue Three Men from Tumble Dryer.”

Wait. “Men”?

Whenever an article says “men,” I immediately picture men my age. Like 3 men in their 40s crawled into a dryer. This did not happen. It was three guys in their upper teens.

Also, once the first guy got in there, what were the other 2 thinking?

Anyway, this is one reason men have shorter lives than women. Or, I don’t know—maybe this is just a cautionary tale about why we shouldn’t do laundry during the Nine Days. You don’t know what will happen.

I mean clearly, this was not an accident. They didn’t just all fall in.

So anyway, I read the story, and it turns out it was an industrial-size dryer, and the first two guys got in just fine. But when the third guy tried climbing in, his ankles got trapped in the door, and he couldn’t get in OR out. There’s always that one guy, isn’t there? And then because he was stuck, the other two guys couldn’t get out either. It’s not like there was an emergency exit.

Do you think the firemen knew they were rescuing three guys, or did they think they were rescuing one and get totally surprised when 3 came out, like a clown car?

“Um… Is there a 4th?”

“There was, but we lost him.”

Anyway, the firefighters learned that if you stuff 3 guys into a dryer overnight, they do not come out smelling laundry fresh.

And then there’s the story from last July, titled, “Florida Man Driving with Candle Sets Car on Fire.”

See, this is why you’re supposed to use your headlights.

And this happened during the Nine Days.

Anyway, this story makes a great safety tip for Chabad around Chanukah. And people racing to and from Chanukah parties. And also to parents who yell at their kids for turning on the overhead lights in the car, as if once you do that you cannot see a single thing in the windshield but your own reflections. And also for people who do bedikas chometz in their cars on the way to the in-laws for Yom Tov while their wives drive.

Anyway, it turns out that he wasn’t holding the candle at all. It was one of those fragrant candles, because let’s face it—cars can stink. Especially in the summer. You throw out one apple core once, and wow. And what are you going to do, drive around with one of those tree things that hang from the rear-view mirror? No, what you want to do is you want to drive with a lit candle in your car.

But this guy’s candle tipped over onto a pile of papers, because people keep piles of papers all over their cars, because there’s maybe a little garbage bag but there’s no little recycling.

“It’s okay,” they tell guests. “Just throw it in the back.”

I love people who are bothered by how their car smells but they have huge piles of garbage everywhere.

“What is this story doing in a technology article?” you ask. I don’t know. I give fire to my neighbors every Yom Tov and they walk home with one hand in front of the candle, but none of them has ever burned down the sidewalk. A car is better for transporting most things, but not this. You don’t want to drive with something that will destroy your entire car if you slam on the brakes. Tell that to anybody who’s ever driven with a pot of soup on a tight Friday afternoon.


Mordechai Schmutter is a freelance writer and a humor columnist for Hamodia and other magazines. He has also published eight books and does stand-up comedy. You can contact him at [email protected]

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