A Man and His Vacuum (5/12/12)

Thirteen years ago local physicians and medical examiners determined that I had died twice due to a car accident in which I was thrown out of a spiraling car and landed directly on my face. The resulting injuries were a shattered jaw, a closed traumatic brain injury with several cerebral contusions across multiple areas on both the surface and below the surface of my brain, displaced vertebrae, some minor bumps and scrapes, and death upon impact. In laymen terms I was yard sailing on a gravel road when my face brought me to such an abrupt stop that it caused my head to be smashed out of my ass and it killed me really bad. While being cared for in the hospital I had an allergic reaction to some medication that nobody knew I was allergic to and they asked me if I was allergic to it but I didn’t give a response because I was two weeks deep in a coma so they gave it to me anyway. That killed me again. This past January the Biography Channel’s near death experience disambiguation team documented my stories of the hereafter over the digital airwaves on an apparently rarely watched television show called I Survived: Beyond and Back. Right now I am trying to figure out where in the hell I put their phone number because just moments ago I had yet another near death experience. Let me explain…

I have owned a 10 Amp PowerForce Bissell upright vacuum cleaner with five surface height settings since the beginning of the millennium. It has traveled across the nation with me from Kearney, to Miami, to Denver, to Omaha, back to Denver, and then back to Kearney again. This 10 Amp PowerForce Bissell upright vacuum cleaner with five surface height settings has cleaned every floor that I have lived on for over a decade even though he mostly spent his time loitering in my closet or under my stairs waiting months at a time for me to give him a purpose for existing. Today I snatched the 10 Amp PowerForce Bissell upright vacuum cleaner with five surface height settings from his nest of useless boxes and blankets that he had made for himself underneath my stairs so I could put him to some good use. I vacuumed my entire apartment with the greatest of ease. I’ve always admired my Bissell’s ability to maintain his gusto for cleaning floors despite the months of dormancy he had spent in closets or under the stairs. He consumed dirt and shit off of my floor like a starving bear that had forgotten to eat before going into hibernation. After vacuuming my carpets and rugs I took him to the armpit, or the asshole of my apartment. The bathroom.

From this point on I will simply refer to the 10 Amp PowerForce Bissell upright vacuum cleaner with five surface height settings as Mr. Bissell. So Mr. Bissell has five surface height settings and the lowest setting is labeled as “Bare Floor”. This means that he is barely hovering above the floor to create more suction capacity much like an electric razor gently hovers over the skin to remove hairs only nanometers from their trunks. In other words Mr. Bissell can eat the smallest bits of shit off the flattest of floors. I am still having arguments with my lower back because of an injury last week so I didn’t want to deepen the grudge by cleaning the bathroom on my hands and knees and possibly blowing my lumbar all to shit again. For the first time ever I was going to employ the magic of Mr. Bissell to clean my bathroom floor. I lowered Mr. Bissell to “Bare Floor” setting and watched him do his dirty miracles on the linoleum surface of my fecal laboratory.

My God, watching Mr. Bissell vacuum was like watching a powerful silverback gorilla gently pick and eat insects off of his mate without harming a single hair on her head. Mr. Bissell was making his happy electric hum as he worked when all of the sudden he began to choke on something. I didn’t panic at first because Mr. Bissell has swallowed such things as quarters and candy-corn without making a cough, so I gave him a moment to get it down his gullet. After about twenty seconds the rattling noise suddenly broke out into a roar and I unplugged Mr. Bissell immediately. I gave him a minute to catch his breath and then I plugged him in again. Holy shit! Blue lightening emitted from Mr. Bissell’s undercarriage and the common poo smell of my shitbox instantaneously converted into a smell of ozone and burnt rubber. I unplugged Mr. Bissell as fast as I could. I sat on my toilet and stared at Mr. Bissell in silence. I wasn’t looking at him with a portrayal of disappointment but with one of sadness. I knew deep down that he was most likely dead but I just wanted to give him one last chance at life. I reached over to plug him in and as soon as the forks neared the socket, F-F-F-U-U-U-C-C-C-K-K-Ka Ka Ka Ka! I was barefoot and I assume that the blue lightening radiating from Mr. Bissell’s skid plate zapped my foot and shocked me. I howled like a banshee receiving a titty twister and fell to the ground. Luckily I unplugged Mr. Bissell as I fell or else his blue lightening may have struck my face. My scream was so loud and high pitch that I doubt the girls upstairs were able to hear it with our normal human hearing abilities but it caused several dogs in the neighborhood to breakout into barks and howls.

I laid on my floor in fear. If it weren’t for the very mild pain in my foot and hand then I would have thought that I had died. That wouldn’t have been too saddening because if there were any hand that I would be willing to hold as we jumped off the plain of earthly reality into the unknown abyss it would have been Mr. Bissell’s hand. After a minute or so I picked myself up off the floor but didn’t have to dust myself off because Mr. Bissell had managed to make my floor sparkle in his last moment of life. I picked up Mr. Bissell’s lifeless but always stiff body and placed him back under the stairs in his nest. Then I grabbed my Black and Decker handheld vacuum cleaner and finished the job in my bathroom. If an autopsy were to be performed on Mr. Bissell then I would imagine that my putting the wrong sized vacuum bag into his belly would have most likely played a factor in his demise, but the bags were on sale so that’s just a risk that Mr. Bissell had to face. It’s going to suck major balls finding a new vacuum cleaner to replace Mr. Bissell with. I vacuumed today so I won’t have to worry about buying a new one until September or so, but it will still suck when the time comes. Not so much finding a vacuum cleaner in this modern age of feminized men and machinery that will be able to even remotely compare to the suction force of Mr. Bissell, which was built before 9/11. But the price will suck. I spent $60 on my Mother’s Day gift and then $45 on groceries today. Anyway, that was my third near death experience. I managed to go beyond and back again but Mr. Bissell is still stuck in the beyond.

Good night Mr. Bissell. I know you’re up there in heaven chasing Miss Dangles around on that aquamarine carpet in the sky. I’ll be thinking of you as I buff out the burn marks on my bathroom floor tomorrow.

Mr. Bissell, my nigga.

-Mr. Bissell  2000 – 2012 (RIP)

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