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A part from my young son's plastic potty had somehow gotten stuck in the toilet trap. I couldn't snake it out, nor could the plumber, who left saying, 'Buy a new toilet.' But I had a brilliant idea: I'd burn it out! I pulled the toilet and dragged it outside. There I poured charcoal lighter fluid down the trap and lit it up. Standing back, I basked in the glory of the geyser flames and my phenomenal ingenuity... until the bang. The commode literally cracked from the heat. I bought a new toilet.
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The shrubs along the front of our house were getting overgrown and needed a good pruning. After a couple of hours of aggressive shearing, the shrubs looked worse than ever, so I decided to pull them out and get new ones. After digging around the trunks to free the roots, I tied a heavy rope to the base of one of the shrubs and fastened the other end of the rope to the back of my 4x4 pickup. I slowly drove the pickup forward to tighten the rope and then accelerated quickly, hoping to jerk the bush free of the soil. Well, it worked. What I didn't expect was the rubber-band effect of the nylon rope. It catapulted the bush right through the back window of my truck. Sitting in the cab with glass strewn all over the interior, I regretfully remembered that my dad always used a heavy chain for this task!