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Man Wedged in Chimney Blames Mary Poppins
Reuters ^ | November 13, 2002

Posted on 11/13/2002 4:41:06 PM PST by Willie Green

For education and discussion only. Not for commercial use.

FORT WORTH, Texas (Reuters) - It may work for Santa Claus and the singing chimney sweep in "Mary Poppins," but one Texas man found out that going down the chimney was no way to enter a home after he became wedged in the smoke stack.

Mark Vaughn was trying to help his family get back into their home in Fort Worth after they locked themselves out.

When his mother-in-law told him to get a locksmith, Vaughn said he got the idea of going down the chimney. His inspiration was the character of the chimney sweep played by actor Dick Van Dyke in the movie "Mary Poppins," which he had recently seen.

"What prompted me? I was watching the Dick Van Dyke movie a few weeks ago, you know the chimney sweeper movie," Vaughn told reporters Tuesday.

Vaughn said he thought he was going to make it all the way down the chimney, but he got stuck near the bottom. After about 30 minutes in the chimney, Vaughn realized he could go no further and yelled out for help.

His family called for the fire department, and as he waited in the shaft, Vaughn said his arms and legs went numb.

Rescue workers carefully dismantled the chimney brick by brick and after about an hour, they opened a hole large enough to free Vaughn.

"In trying to get the person out, you have to do a lot of manipulation of the brick and mortar, which can transmit a lot of injury to the person inside," said James Johns, a fire battalion chief.

A grateful Vaughn, his face black with soot, shook hands with the firefighters who rescued him and said the episode left him shaken.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; US: Texas
KEYWORDS:

The stars at night - are big and bright
Deep in the heart of Texas.
The prairie sky - is wide and high
Deep in the heart of Texas.
The Sage in bloom - is like perfume
Deep in the heart of Texas.
Reminds me of - the one I love
Deep in the heart of Texas.
The cowboys cry - ki-yip-pie-yi
Deep in the heart of Texas.
The rabbits rush - around the brush
Deep in the heart of Texas.
The coyotes wail - along the trail
Deep in the heart of Texas.
The doggies bawl - and bawl and bawl
Deep in the heart of Texas.


1 posted on 11/13/2002 4:41:06 PM PST by Willie Green
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To: Willie Green
What a dumba**
2 posted on 11/13/2002 4:44:39 PM PST by KevinDavis
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To: Willie Green
Woulda made Darwin proud.
3 posted on 11/13/2002 4:46:57 PM PST by The Duke
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To: KevinDavis
Couldn't have said it better myself.
4 posted on 11/13/2002 4:47:44 PM PST by Linda
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To: mhking
HMB ping
5 posted on 11/13/2002 4:49:24 PM PST by stands2reason
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To: Willie Green
Step In Time

Step in time, step in time
Come on, mateys, step in time
Step in time
Step in time, step in time
Step in time, step in time
Never need a reason,
Never need a rhyme
Step in time, you step in time!

Kick your knees up!
Kick your knees up, step in time
Kick your knees up, step in time
Never need a reason,
Never need a rhyme
Kick your knees up, step in time

Round the chimney!
Round the chimney, step in time
Round the chimney, step in time
Never need a reason,
Never need a rhyme
Round the chimney, step in time

6 posted on 11/13/2002 4:53:11 PM PST by Consort
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To: KevinDavis
When this guy writes the check to the mason who rebuilds his chimney, the furthest thing from his mind will be how much money he was going to save by not calling a locksmith....
7 posted on 11/13/2002 4:57:12 PM PST by Joe 6-pack
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To: Willie Green

SUE DISNEY!

Hold muh chimney sweep...

8 posted on 11/13/2002 4:58:05 PM PST by Caipirabob
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To: Yakboy

9 posted on 11/13/2002 5:02:28 PM PST by Lunatic Fringe
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To: Willie Green
"In trying to get the person out, you have to do a lot of manipulation of the brick and mortar, which can transmit a lot of injury to the person inside," said James Johns, a fire battalion chief.

If it's done right.

10 posted on 11/13/2002 5:04:09 PM PST by Oztrich Boy
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To: Jimer

11 posted on 11/13/2002 5:07:34 PM PST by Lunatic Fringe
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To: Willie Green
Practically Stupid In Every Way.

-PJ

12 posted on 11/13/2002 5:14:10 PM PST by Political Junkie Too
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To: Willie Green
Time to write your Congressman, demand they pass the 2002 Chimney Safety Act. The chimney you save could be yours!
13 posted on 11/13/2002 5:19:53 PM PST by Lockbox
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To: Howlin; Ed_NYC; MonroeDNA; widgysoft; Springman; FreedomPoster; Timesink; AntiGuv; ...
"Hold muh beer 'n watch this!" PING....

If you want on or off this list, please let me know!

14 posted on 11/13/2002 5:48:32 PM PST by mhking
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To: Willie Green
How many jobs were lost because of this?
15 posted on 11/13/2002 5:53:26 PM PST by MonroeDNA
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To: Jimer
LOL! I was just gonna post that.

PANDEMONIUM breaks out when my little niece & nephew hear that song. Much stepping ensues. <|:)~
16 posted on 11/13/2002 5:55:03 PM PST by martin_fierro
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To: KevinDavis
You think that's stupid? I went to an insurance agents' convention. One of the most successful agents locked himself out of his apartment. So on a sleety night he decided to enter by way of the roof. He fell to his death.

I would call a locksmith every time.
17 posted on 11/13/2002 5:55:41 PM PST by Chemnitz
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To: Willie Green
This guy was a real winner. After he was freed from the chimney he held his hand up with his index and pinkie fingers extended, and proudly proclaimed "fireman rock!!!". This guy looked like he came straight from a Metallica concert...
18 posted on 11/13/2002 5:58:14 PM PST by mfreddy
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To: Willie Green
Chim chiminy, chim chiminy, chim chim cheree,
This bozo is stupid as stupid can be,
Chim chiminy chim chiminy chim chim cheroo,
His buttocks clenched tight as he's stuck in the flue,
The damper is closed and he's stuck in the fluuuuuuue...

I've heard if you start at the storm drain and hold your breath real good you can make it in through the toilet...

19 posted on 11/13/2002 6:00:30 PM PST by Billthedrill
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You would think he'd be blaming Sara Lee.
20 posted on 11/13/2002 6:06:27 PM PST by Paul Atreides
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To: Willie Green
Congress should make a mandatory viewing advisory law for all Disney Classics stating; "If you are a total dumba$$ you can not watch any of these flicks"

Can you imagine what he would do with "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" or "Peter Pan"?
21 posted on 11/13/2002 6:18:52 PM PST by Rightly Biased
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To: MonroeDNA
What did President Bush know and when did he know it?
22 posted on 11/13/2002 6:53:09 PM PST by altair
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To: Willie Green; NorCoGOP
When his mother-in-law told him to get a locksmith,

Need we say more. Clearly the actual and proximate cause of this incident. No man worth his salt willingly and/or blindly does what his mother-in-law tells him to do.

Pookie & ME

23 posted on 11/13/2002 8:02:43 PM PST by Pookie Me
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To: Willie Green
This one again, eh?
24 posted on 11/14/2002 3:46:10 AM PST by Dark Seraph
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To: Willie Green
A check of his voter registration card is not necessary in this case. A Dem.
25 posted on 11/14/2002 3:49:15 AM PST by The Raven
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To: Willie Green
Here is the story from the local paper: Man learns hard way: Leave chimney to Santa

Man learns hard way: Leave chimney to Santa

By Melody McDonald
Star-Telegram Staff Writer

Wed, Nov. 13, 2002

FORT WORTH - Mark Vaughn said so himself. Sliding down his mother-in-law's chimney Tuesday morning wasn't exactly a hot idea.

It was "Stuuuuuupid!" the soot-covered man cracked to reporters after firefighters worked for more than an hour to free him from the fireplace. "She was telling me not to do it. But it looked like I could get in, you know what I'm saying?"

Most people might agree that, unless you're Santa, you just can't slide down a chimney without getting stuck. But Vaughn -- a 35-year-old entertainer-DJ-singer-wannabe-actor -- marches to the beat of a different drummer.

So when his mother-in-law locked her keys in her house just before 11 a.m., he decided to tackle the problem feet first.

"I slid all the way down, but the angle wasn't right," Vaughn said. "I couldn't move. I was trying to work it out. But I worked myself into getting stuck."

Vaughn's mother-in-law, who had wanted to call a locksmith to begin with, dialed 911.

Moments later, seven Fire Department units, including the technical rescue team, came screaming up to the house in the 4800 block of Westridge Avenue.

Paramedics brought out a stretcher in preparation for Vaughn's rescue. A mob of TV reporters flocked to the scene, angling for space behind yellow tape as neighbors griped at them to stay off their yards.

The obviously embarrassed mother-in-law kept her distance, making it very clear to fire officials that she did not want to hear her name or see her face on the news.

Next-door neighbor David Poindexter, 83, dressed in red plaid golf pants and a bolo tie, hobbled out of his house on a cane to see what all the fuss was about.

"I was in my house, and my wife came to the door and said there were firetrucks outside," said Poindexter, who, every now and then, had to be gently steered out of the way by firefighters. "My lord, half of the Fire Department was out front. They just moved in a couple or three days ago.

"I came out and discovered there was a gentleman caught in the chimney."

Like so many others, Poindexter watched wide-eyed as fire officials cut, drilled and dug their way through the rock and brick fireplace. Finally, a white and blue tennis shoe emerged.

Not long after, firefighters gingerly helped Vaughn, sporting a beard and silver earrings in both ears and dressed in black, out of the fireplace and into the yard -- where his mother-in-law was waiting.

After a brief yelling match between Vaughn and his mother-in-law -- in which Vaughn could be heard yelling, "Just be cool about it!" -- all seemed well again, except, of course, for the gaping hole in the chimney.

Vaughn declined medical treatment and spent the next several minutes shaking firefighters' hands.

"Firemen rock!" Vaughn later told reporters, adding that he wasn't even upset that they had nicked his finger a bit with a drill. "They were here to save my life."

He described his newfound freedom as being like, "Winning the lottery, man!" But he acknowledged that he had learned a lesson or two from his adventure.

"Listen to your mother-in-law. Don't climb down chimneys. And I probably need to lose weight."

=============
As Forrest Gump would say: "Stupid is as stupid does."

26 posted on 11/14/2002 6:59:19 AM PST by VRWCmember
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To: VRWCmember
As Forrest Gump would say: "Stupid is as stupid does."

Yeah, but the more I read about it, this guy seems to have a good sense of humor about the dumb situation he got himself into. I like his style of dealing with it.

27 posted on 11/14/2002 7:20:37 AM PST by Willie Green
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To: Willie Green
Yeah, but the more I read about it, this guy seems to have a good sense of humor about the dumb situation he got himself into.

Yes, but like a typical idiot, he thinks people are laughing WITH him rather than laughing AT him.

28 posted on 11/14/2002 7:29:08 AM PST by VRWCmember
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To: VRWCmember
Maybe so. But your options are laugh or cry. If you laugh, people either laugh with at you or just think you're weird. If you cry, you rust everything.
29 posted on 11/14/2002 7:52:17 AM PST by Jaded
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To: VRWCmember
It's my observation that the biggest Clymers in life are those who are so pompous that they'd never admit to having been caught with their pants down. IMHO, this guy's self-deprecating effort to diffuse the embarrassment is actually quite graceful. Seems to be an emotionally well-balanced individual, despite the lapse in judgement. Not a typical Darwin Award candidate.
30 posted on 11/14/2002 7:56:03 AM PST by Willie Green
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