As you might expect, I’m celebrating this milestone with a face-plant

image I know it’s Thursday, a day I don’t normally post. But WAIT! I can explain! Yes, I know I probably should’ve called first. But sometimes things happen that are out of our control. Like three pregnant Kardashians. Or when the dog rubs his butt on the carpet when we’re not home. In this case, however, what has happened is actually a happy thing. An exciting thing. And something that, for the most part, won’t leave a stain on the carpet or the next generation.

Back on June 7, this blog celebrated a milestone of picking up its 4,500th follower. After the party (My thanks to all of you for staying to help clean up, by the way), I set a goal of seeing if this blog could reach 5,000 by Aug. 16, when I turn 38 40 45

FINE Then: 48!

I felt it was a bit of a stretch, but stretching is something I’m trying to do a lot more of lately, especially since it’s getting easier to throw my back out or pull a groin muscle. Over the last several weeks, I’ve watched in amazement realizing there was a good chance I might actually make that goal. When I woke this morning and saw this blog had actually surpassed 5,000, I sprang up out of my chair and hollered “OWWWWWW!” because I had pulled a groin muscle.

But while hunched over and banging my fist on the table I was still appreciative — and more than slightly awed by the support I’ve received from each one of you. When I celebrated the milestone of my 1,000th follower a little over a year ago, I never would have imagined another 4,000 people would willingly subject themselves to this blog on a regular basis. Not without payment.

My father always told me nothing expresses appreciation with more clarity and sincerity than a handshake and two simple words:

Thank You.

Please accept my firm handshake or, if you’re comfortable with it, my heartfelt and appreciative hug. I promise to keep my hands above the waist. (Sorry, Hook)

Thank You.

As a measure of my appreciation, particularly to those who read Monday’s post and have been asking about the many references from readers about my pole-dancing face-plant, I am including documented evidence of my klutziness below. And by “below,” I mean below this paragraph, not… you know… below…


image The three elements of a “Perfect Storm” came together here on the Oregon coast today:

Extremely strong winds
Heavy rain
My weak acrobatic skills.

This is always a dangerous combination. Especially when my family suggests I do something funny, like pretend the wind is lifting me off the ground. Under normal circumstance — such as sitting on the couch, completely dry and nowhere near a pole — this would not have been a problem. But as we made our way through the school parking lot fighting the wind and rain, the third element of this Perfect Storm scenario developed.

“Honey, you should do that pole thing where you lift your legs up like it’s windy,” my wife suggested. “I’ll get a picture!”
“But it really IS windy,” I replied.”
“Exactly! It’ll look even funnier!”
Naturally, my response was what you’d expect from a 47-year-old man with limited health coverage.


After taking the above photo, we all had a good laugh. Then my loving wife suggested we take it up a notch. “Hey, let’s do a video of it!”

Keep in mind that my wife and son were both remaining warm and dry in the car during all this, and that I — along with the pole — were getting wetter by the minute. I, of course, took all of this into consideration before putting my foot down and answering with an unequivocal, “OKAY!”

The first take went pretty well…

With that take safely recorded, the smart thing to do would have been to get into the car and drive home. But then I asked myself, “Would Martin Scorsese quit with one take? Would Stanley Kubrick? Sure, NOW he would. But what about before he was dead?”

The second take didn’t go quite so well..

Thanks to the rain, things didn’t get much better…

Should the police ever decide to investigate what I’m sure were numerous reports of a man attempting to commit suicide by sliding down a pole face-first into the mud, I’ll be easy to find. That’s because, in addition to the lasting impression I made on those who witnessed this event, I’m pretty sure there’s also a good impression of my face at the bottom of that pole…

Again, Thank You all for joining me on a regular basis for life’s face-plants.

(Ned Hickson is a syndicated columnist with News Media Corporation. His first book, Humor at the Speed of Life, is available from Port Hole Publications, or Barnes & Noble.)


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Ned's Blog

I was a journalist, humor columnist, writer and editor at Siuslaw News for 23 years. The next chapter in my own writer’s journey is helping other writers prepare their manuscript for the road ahead. I'm married to the perfect woman, have four great kids, and a tenuous grip on my sanity...

92 thoughts on “As you might expect, I’m celebrating this milestone with a face-plant”

  1. OKay- I hate it so much when the dog does this that I’m snickering evilly knowing it happens at your house too: “…when the dog rubs his butt on the carpet when we’re not home.” Except my dog does it in front of guests… ON PURPOSE

          1. WAs considering diapering my remaining geriatric chicken since she was cooking in our 116 heat… but she succumbed quicker than I could engineer a chicken diaper! Seriously. Coyote got the cat last month. Now the chicken. Just the but scooting dog left…

                1. Ha! True. But you have to admit, a butt-scooting chicken would’ve been a great icebreaker for guests. Maybe even a new single for Brooks and Dunn, “Butt-Scoot Boogie”

  2. The best part of the video, your wife’s laugh, and then the comment “oh hunny, I didn’t get that”. The commentary made the video, though I have doubts it will go viral. Maybe a third take?

    Congratulations on you 5000th follower, I believe I have thirty. C’est la vie.

  3. Priceless, Ned! I don’t know what was better … watching you slide down the pole, or hearing your wife’s pure laughter. Congrats (on the followers, not the fall…) as well!

  4. I believe you have it the other way around…you have so many followers because you “more than slightly odd”.

    Congrats, my friend…couldn’t happen to a nicer guy…I know, I’ve tried.

  5. CONGRATULATIONS NED!!! That’s awesome and totally deserved!!! I’m a huge – I laugh out loud on every post – “such as sitting on the couch, completely dry and nowhere near a pole — this would not have been a problem.” And seriously that faceplant was very special. You’re the greatest!

        1. Believe it or not, there’s actually a specific procedure for 1) entering the gate that surrounds the pole, 2) how to wrap one leg around the pole and how to position your arms, and 3) the proper landing and “dismount.”

          And yes, some people have had to make more than one attempt. You know, after getting their cast off.

  6. I’m pretty sure your acrobatic skills earned you at least a few hundred followers right there.
    P.S. I’m disappointed to know that there won’t be a payment. I may have to watch the video to make me feel better.

  7. You have the grace of a swan bred with a teenage Chinese gymnast, then cross bred with a cement block. Lol. Thanks for the chuckle and kudos on all the followers. Damn, that’s a lot!

  8. And here I was patting myself on the back for reaching 800! Now I feel like you in the video. Okay, it doesn’t matter how many times I watch that video I still laugh hysterically.

    1. 800 is nothing to sneeze at, Suz! Think of it as walking down the street with 800 people following you. Then try to get a table at your favorite restaurant.

      Thanks for laughing 😉

  9. HAHAHAHAHA! That’s awesome! You should probably start planning now for how to celebrate the 10,000 mark (as I have no doubt you’ll get there) because this one is gonna be tough to beat.
    : )

          1. and since that is one of the top three most awesome things anyone can every say, we’ll go with that.
            You also nailed one of the other top 3 in your ‘about’ section when you said that you were married to the perfect woman.
            You’re one of the few people excluded from the last one on my top 3 list…it’s that my job is my occupation, not who I am, it does not define me. YOU are a humor columnist and get to tell extremely funny stories for a living….so you get a pass on that one.
            : )

            1. In all honesty, it’s because I’ve been blessed with marrying the perfect woman that I can live the other two awesome things 😉

              But thanks for the pass anyway; I was kind of sweating that one…

  10. As a long time lurker (reader), I am proud to be among the 5000. I really, really love your blog because you give me so much joy and laughter. As someone who is home bound, I rely on the webby world to keep me in touch with like minded people and you are definitely my kind of people. Thank and keep on keeping on. 🙂

    1. And I’m proud to be your kind of people, Tez 😉
      Thanks for lurking/reading, and for the kind words. I’ll do my best to give you a reason to laugh as often as I can while remaining clothed…

  11. Thank You for entertaining us. Congratulations on acquiring so many susceptible followers for the “Misadventures of Ned”. Hugs, to you and your wife. 😀

  12. Getting 4,000 followers in one year. That’s quite impressive, must admit. Congrats!
    By the way, how much did you pay them, for I’m sure I didn’t get any cash when I became a groupie.

  13. You’re very welcome. By the time you hit 49 next year I can brag to people about knowing the (then) world famous Ned Hickson when he was still a pole dancer.

      1. Well, these times it’s very fashionable for people to become famous over a sex tape, so your take on pole dancing kinda falls into that category (which is probably why all the health care in the world won’t cover it;))

  14. I tend not to “follow” people because… well… I’m not a follower. It just sounds creepy to me. But in the name of science and historical significance, I will follow you. Or youse, if my Uncle Guido is watching. That is a huge number of people, I’m hoping personal hygiene exams are administered before anyone is allowed into the fold.

    Thanks for being a reliable smile to what can sometimes be a mundane week.

    1. Chris, I have pretty strict guidelines about who is allowed into the fold. I even wrote them down so they wouldn’t be forgotten. And as soon as I find where I put them, I will SOOO enforce them.

      Until then, I’m truly glad to know I am reliably better than mundane.

      Thanks, my friend 😉

  15. Must fight urge… to… mock, Ned… His success is genuine and deserved. System overloading from the need to reference words… like… Putz… Schmuck.. Yutz….

  16. HOW did I almost miss this? I’m a terrible friend/reader! So glad I backed up to check it out. Your wife’s laugh brought my husband up out bed to see what was going on in my office. He said it sounded like I was having entirely too much fun without him. Love the video!

    Congrats on the 5000+ followers. Well-deserved! I’m already getting my speech ready for the grandkids…”I knew him back when…”
    Have a great weekend!

    1. Yeah, my wife’s laughter always makes it sound like we’re having entirely too much fun 😉

      And, Michelle, you are anything but a terrible reader/friend. You’ve been the inspiration for more than a few NWOWs and posts, not to mention that 3,500 of those follows came immediately after I posted the photo of you with my book on the lawnmower.

      Yes, gentlemen, she was holding a book… 😉

      1. LMAO!! Oh my goodness, you know how to make a girl’s day.
        Your comment sparked a completely wrong, but brilliant idea. Any chance you could send ME a picture of YOU on your mower? It would be the perfect accent to a post I’m working on right now. Pleeeeeeezzzzzz?!?

        1. HAHAHA! I can totally do that! I’ll get something to you later today or tomorrow if that works. If you need it sooner, just let me know. Do I ned to know the context? Or more importantly, shouldI be scared?! 😉

          1. Oh thank you!!! Today or tomorrow works just fine. My post probably won’t go up till mid-week.
            No need to be scared, I promise (fingers crossed).
            Actually, it’s part of a blog tour post that I’m doing on writing process. I was trying to find a way to work you into the post without having to “tag” you and make more work for you. A photo of you on the mower will be my segue into introducing your NWOW posts.
            *evil laughter
            Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!!

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