The Curious Case of Calamity Jackson

Posted: November 28, 2012 in Random Daily Musings
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So, it has been decided that I am, in fact, a mutant. This, dear reader, is the only possible and logical explanation for my inherent ability to trip over absolutely nothing, break everything within a six mile radius of my grubby paws, perform the most average daily tasks entirely  backwards (and with the most astonishing outcomes) and thereby put the lives of my nearest and dearest in frightful, perilous danger.

The word ‘clutz,’ as defined by the urban dictionary, describes an individual ‘who is extremely careless, stupid and a hazard to be around.’ Never a truer word. However, I have come to the conclusion that this term is a little too glamorous for the likes of me; ‘clumsy oaf,’ it seems, would be far more appropriate.

It would appear that I am entirely incapable of walking from A to B (never mind in a straight line) without falling over my own feet, a chip in the pavement which only a microscope would detect or staggering into the direct path of a lone lamppost. One would presume that clutching for dear life to the arm of another human would steady my gait; apparently not, it just seems to push these poor, kindly Samaritans into the path of oncoming danger. The scars on my poor kneecaps and numerous other body parts are proof of my sheer ineptitude. You would have thought these war wounds would at least teach me to be a tad more careful; not a bit of it.

This preposterous incompetence does not stop here dear reader, oh no. It is I who you may have seen wandering around the cheese aisle of a supermarket still wearing their carpet slippers and muttering incoherently to no one in particular. I have an uncanny knack for wandering out of my abode in some frightful get-up, having forgotten who I am, where it is I am going and what would be suitable attire for my destination. I also seem to lose everything; things that would be seemingly unfeasible to lose in impossible circumstances to a normal human being. On one occasion I bought a cucumber (as one does when the sudden and peculiar craving for ‘salad’ hits.) I paid for this vegetable, I placed this vegetable in a carrier bag, I even managed to transport this vegetable safely through the front door of my home whereupon I suddenly, and without warning, lost this vegetable in its entirety. I searched high and low, in a variety of spots and corners, where such vegetables may hide, and yet this cucumber, my dear sweet cucumber had disappeared from my life entirely. I never found it. In fact, its whereabouts are still a mystery. How, dear reader, is this even possible?

I’m sure I am not alone in putting my keys in the bathroom cupboard and discovering the remote control in the fridge, but it would appear my other comrades in this war against inanimate objects all have children and are therefore vindicated by the sheer desperation which some parents find themselves in. I, however, have no such excuse. It is probably a wise move that I have not procreated as I would no doubt misplace my poor off-spring and discover them at a later date in the laundry basket.

At least once an hour I will drop and therefore smash a fragile item, burn a part of my person on something which common sense tells one is blistering hot, slam a limb or piece of clothing betwixt door and doorframe, accidentally force the heel of my shoe into a teeny-tiny drain hole (which no man, woman or beast has ever previously encountered) until I can do nothing but cry for help from passing strangers. It is positively tedious.

Fine dining is a strictly prohibited as, despite my excellent table manners and best efforts, the majority of my feast will end up down my front, smeared across my face, thrown up the walls and over the brave person who is sitting opposite me. Other diners on separate tables and waiters within spitting distance also won’t remain unscathed. Should I manage to make it home with at least some dignity intact, I will of course then lose the remainder of it when trying to a) find my keys (a task which normally results in the total contents of my handbag being thrown across my front steps and my entire person thereafter falling directly into it) and b) on finding my colossal key-ring, slip the correct key into the lock (a mission which continues to bamboozle my brain regardless of whether I am tiddley on gin or just tea.)

All forms of technology are rigorously verboten for the simple reason that they will constantly break if placed in my vicinity. I can predict with inconceivable accuracy, the response from those poor whizz kids on the end of telephone helplines (some of whom I have now made great friends with) when attempting to repair my computer, coffee machine, phone etc for the hundredth time that hour which is, and always will be, ‘Well, we’ve never seen this before!’ I could scream, I really could. I should, I have therefore decided, be employed by Apple as their Technology Tester (such a position must exist.) The world, as a whole, would never have techno problems again.   

Sadly, I have yet to encounter another human being who is as cursed as I. No other person (as far as I am aware) has ever managed to padlock themselves, their clothing, their gym bag and indeed their bike to a pipe in one fell swoop or attempt to plug their phone charger into a brazil nut one afternoon. These ridiculous complications and continual dramas only seem to occur to me. I also seem to attract the nutters, the lunatics, the weird, the peculiar and the bizarre. Should you observe a dribbling, twitching madman stumbling along hurling abuse at himself, you can be sure he’s on his way to talk to me. If there are vacant seats aplenty on the bus, you could bet your life savings that the only village loony in a ten mile radius will hone in directly on the adjacent seat to me, plonk himself down and prepare to blast me with stories about his dog named ‘Sir Lancelot of Sheem’ and how he likes to draw nudes in his spare time. True story.

However hard I try, I can not prevent this maladroitness. Should I endeavour to perform my morning rituals with the utmost quiet in order not to wake my sleeping housemates, this will of course be the morning that I clatter the loudest, dropping tea-making instruments which have suddenly acquired the booming reverberation of a full orchestra and swooping the heavy metal grate atop the hob into the sleeve of my dressing gown. I often wonder whether I should offer myself to the local community as free entertainment. One wouldn’t need to wait until the circus came to town, one could receive the equivalent amusement on simply witnessing my daily struggle for survival.

According to the Harvard Gazette, scientists have discovered a gene associated with severe clumsiness. Mutations of this gene cause ‘Joubert Syndrome’ and therefore brain malfunction. I have consequently offered myself as a test subject to Harvard University in the hope that this blundering genetic factor is hiding some tremendous, and as yet unidentified,  mutation within my stringy DNA which perhaps allows me to be an expert Mongolian throat singer or specialist Batman-figurine carver. One can but hope.

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