January 6th, 2009 08:44 AM
The Electric Fence
We have the standard 6ft. fence in the backyard, and a few months
ago, I heard about burglaries increasing dramatically in the entire city.
To make sure this never happened to me, I got an electric fence and
ran a single wire along the top of the fence.
Actually, I got the biggest cattle charger Tractor Supply had, made
for 26 miles of fence. I then used an 8 ft. long ground rod, and drove
it 7.5 feet into the ground. The ground rod is the key, with the more
you have in the ground, the better the fence works.
One day I'm mowing the back yard with my cheapo Wal-Mart 6hp
big wheel push mower. The hot wire is broken and laying out in the yard. I knew for a fact that I unplugged the charger. I pushed the mower around the wire and reached down to grab it, to throw it out of the way.
It seems as though I hadn't remembered to unplug it after all.
Now I'm standing there, I've got the running lawnmower in my right hand and the 1.7 gigavolt fence wire in the other hand. Keep in mind the charger is about the size of a marine battery and has a picture of an upside down cow on fire on the cover.
Time stood still.
The first thing I notice is my trying to climb up the front side of my body. My ears curled downwards and I could feel the lawnmower ignition firing in the backside of my brain. Every time that Briggs & Stratton rolled over, I could feel the spark in my head. I was literally at one with the engine.
It seems as though the fence charger and the POS lawnmower were
fighting over who would control my electrical impulses.
Science says you cannot crap, pee, and at the same time.
I beg to differ. Not only did I do all three at once, but my bowels
emptied 3 different times in less than half of a second. It was a Matrix kind of bowel movement, where time is creeping along and you're all leaned back and BAM BAM BAM you just crap your pants 3 times. It seemed like there were minutes in between but in reality it was so close together it was like exhaust pulses from a big block Chevy turning 8 grand.
At this point I'm about 30 minutes (maybe 2 seconds) into
holding onto the fence wire. My hand is wrapped around the wire palm down so I can't let go. I grew up on a farm so I know all about electric fences.....but Dad always had those POS chargers made by
International or whoever that were like 9 volts and just kinda tickled.
This one I could not let go of. The 8 foot long ground rod is now
accepting signals from me through the permadamp Ark-La-Tex river
bottom soil. At this point I'm thinking I'm going to have to just man
up and take it, until the lawnmower runs out of gas.
'Damn!,' I think, as I remember I just filled the tank!
Now the lawnmower is starting to run rough. It has settled into a
loping run pattern as if it had some kind of big lawnmower race cam
in it. Covered in poop, pee, , and with my on my chest I think 'Oh God please die... pleeeeaze die'. But nooooo, it settles into the rough lumpy cam idle nicely and remains there, like a big bore roller cam EFI motor waiting for the go command from its owner's right foot.
So here I am in the middle of July, 104 degrees, 80% humidity,
standing in my own backyard, begging God to kill me. God did not
take me that day.....he left me there covered in my own fluids to writhe in the misery my own stupidity had created.
I honestly don't know how I got loose from the wire...
I woke up laying on the ground hours later. The lawnmower was
beside me, out of gas. It was later on in the day and I was
There were two large dead grass spots where I had been standing, and then another long skinny dead spot were the wire had laid while I
was on the ground still holding on to it. I assume I finally had a
seizure and in the resulting thrashing had somehow let go of the
Upon waking from my electrically induced sleep I realized a few things:
1- Three of my teeth seem to have melted.
2- I now have cramps in the bottoms of my feet and my right butt
cheek (not the left, just the right).
3- Poop, pee, and when all mixed together, do not smell
as bad as you might think.
4- My left eye will not open.
5- My right eye will not close.
6- The lawnmower runs like a sumbitch now. Seriously! I think our
little session cleared out some carbon fouling or something,
because it was better than new after that.
7- My are still smaller than average yet they are
almost a foot long.
8- I can turn on the TV in the game room by farting while thinking of
the number 4 (still don't understand this???).
That day changed my life. I now have a newfound respect for things.
I appreciate the little things more, and now I always triple check to make sure the fence is unplugged before I mow.
The good news, is that if a burglar does try to come over the fence,
I can clearly visualize what my security system will do to him, and
THAT gives me a warm and fuzzy feeling all over, which also reminds me to triple check before I mow.
"Without fear there can be no Courage!"
January 6th, 2009 09:23 AM
That is why the electric chair is "cruel and unusual" punishment.
January 6th, 2009 10:08 AM
Well...I had to get over laughing my fool head off first. But I've been there. I'd rather take 277vac and a couple burn marks than the 8000v+dc electric fence any day of the week. Been downed by various electric fences about five times in my whole life. You can usually let go between pulses depending on how far away you are from the charger and the frequency of the pulse...but you can feel every one of them. If it goes through your your mid section as from arm to arm, it will cripple and incapacitate you, and the muscle ache will likely last for a week or more depending. AC voltage at or below 300v is actually more forgiving in most circumstances in my experience. Only those who have been where time stood still, begged for mercy, and survived would know. And yes......in the aftermath we do appreciate life a bit more than we did before and rightfully so. Glad you survived. And by the way....thanks for my first laugh of the day....may be the only laugh of the day, but it should last a while! I managed to get through all of 2008 without getting shocked. In my line of work one tends to keep track of things like that.
January 6th, 2009 10:13 AM
Being “bit” by an electric fence does hurt (personal experience) but I laughed so hard at your experience my sides still hurt.
When you have to shoot, shoot. Don't talk.
"Don't forget, incoming fire has the right of way."
January 6th, 2009 10:16 AM
At least you don't have to get up if you lose the remote.
January 6th, 2009 10:20 AM
January 6th, 2009 10:37 AM
It's a bad thing to read this site while at work...good grief. . Half the office is asking what I was rofling at
"My God David, We're a Civilized society."
"Sure, As long as the machines are workin' and you can call 911. But you take those things away, you throw people in the dark, and you scare the crap out of them; no more rules...You'll see how primitive they can get."
-The Mist (2007)
January 6th, 2009 10:45 AM
LOL, sorry it happened but glad you have such a hilarious story to share! Thanks for the laugh!
"I didn't do it, nobody saw me do it, you can't prove anything!" Bart Simpson
January 6th, 2009 11:48 AM
I whizzed on an electric fence once on a dare from my brother. While doing so I thought my brother ran up and kicked me from behind. I was stumbling and whizzing all over the place. After composing myself I realized that my brother was about 75 yards away and laughing his fool head off at me. The shock felt like someone hitting me hard, not like being shocked.
It is surely true that you can lead a horse to water but you can't make them drink. Nor can you make them grateful for your efforts.
January 6th, 2009 12:36 PM
Having recently experienced the same exact thing, with the same Tractor Supply unit, I just spewed coffee all over my laptop, cried until my wife had me committed, and have been reduced to rolling on the floor.
January 6th, 2009 12:43 PM
Been there, but not as bad. My Dad and I were traversing a rough spot in a river once, dragging his aluminum canoe, and he lifted the wire with a stick but neglected to tell me when he was going to let go. He was holding the rope at the front and I had both hands on the canoe. When that wire hit that canoe I got a real good jolt.
Glad you are OK and now can easily describe to the Cops anyone who tries your yard and fails.
"Don't hit a man if you can possibly avoid it; but if you do hit him, put him to sleep." - Theodore Roosevelt
January 6th, 2009 12:59 PM
I had a friend that put a electric fence around his yard to keep his dogs in,one day he heard his dogs howling on and off and thought WTH so he opens his back door and looks out in the yard.A squirrel was running from the dogs and jumped on the electric fence and while hind legs were still gripping the wire his front paws grabbed the chain link and that is how his life ended,the problem was as he hung there in mid flight the dogs kept trying to bite him and in turn kept getting zapped by the charge,he said it was the darndest thing he ever saw the dogs were taking turns and after one got bit the next one would try and so on
"Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country,"
--Mayor Marion Barry, Washington , DC .
January 6th, 2009 01:03 PM
January 6th, 2009 01:20 PM
That gave me the first real good laugh of 2009!
Believe me, I needed it.
Thanks, but sorry for your misfortune.
I too, know what those fences fell like on the receiving end.
This is the law;
The purpose of fighting is to win.
There is no possible victory in defense.
The sword is more important than the shield and skill is more important than either.
The final weapon is the brain. All else is supplemental. - John Steinbeck
January 6th, 2009 05:06 PM
Fantastic story....do you write for a living?
Thanks for sharing!
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