Sometime ago we asked our regular contributors through e-mail, What do you not fu*k with? We got many interesting response. Here are some of them. We have just copied and pasted their responses, not editing them in any way and most of the respondents have requested to stay anonymous, so no names will be published. Enjoy.
1-5 Things You Don’t Fu*K With
1. Electricity. I have the greatest respect for linesmen. They’re not just high school dropouts on the side of the road in a vest because they couldn’t get a better job. My dad is one. He is an electrical engineer who has worked on Power Systems. This assumption of linemen has always disturbed me. You can’t be a lazy or stupid person to hold your job. If you are you will die. You need to be able to read prints and work well in shi*ty conditions, under a lot of pressure, often times with bad designs because the Engineer who sent the prints in never met the team and has no clue how they work.
2. Mexican Cartels because they don’t give a fu*k. They won’t just kill you. They will kill your whole family in front of you before the torture begins and then they’ll slowly kill you. I worked with a guy who was born in Mexico. He told me a story that started with his mother receiving a call from one of her friends asking to borrow money because a cartel had kidnapped her son and threatened to kill him if she did not pay the ransom they were demanding. They thought she had a lot of money because she was driving a nice car but this was not the case. She was only able to come up with half the ransom money before the time limit ran out so she gave it to them hoping she could pay the other half later but they ended up sending her only half of her son back. Pretty fu*ked up stuff.
3. I’m going to say opiates. I am very pro drug, weed, Psilocybin, etc. I can see real benefits of using. But hydro/oxycodone… man that sh*t should not be fu*ked with. (By fu*ked with I mean recreationally). I know so many people who started taking Percocets once every few days. That soon turned into 2 a day. Then 4 or 5 a day. At this point you have to take them just to not get sick. The pills soon quickly become way too expensive, so they start using heroin. Then they either die, or get on suboxone which is also a very tough to get off of. If you dabble in pain pills, I urge you to stop while you can. This sh*t is really serious.
4. Garage Door Springs, that sh*t will lay you open. About 10 years ago we bought our first home, and it was a bit of a fixer-upper. During the first winter the garage door spring broke. I figured “hey, I’m kinda handy with tools, how hard can this be?” And started poking around on the Internet. Very hard, it turns out. If you don’t have the right tools and know what you’re doing, you stand a decent chance of being decapitated or flayed open. Or maybe just crushed by the door. Or all of the above. Just call a professional and spend the $100. My friend now is a professional who does this for a living. I have heard plenty of horror stories about people getting mangled by the springs and the cables because they are under tension even when the door is down.
5. IRS. Even the joker is afraid of the IRS. They (or their predecessor rather) took down Al Capone. They’ve broken the back of the Ku Klux Klan before. They can garnish your wages, take your house, have you arrested, etc. Pretty much the only thing they can’t do is keep emails that incriminate themselves. What’s funny, though, is that the IRS is not like the Mexican cartels. You can and should try to negotiate with the IRS. They are more concerned with compliance and (some form of) restitution than they are with punishment.
6-10 Things You Don’t Fu*K With
6. Chemist here. Dimethylmercury. There are all kinds of poisonous fuc*ed up things that can kill you with the minimum of fuss in the lab but Dimethylmercury takes it to a whole different level. Here is the tragic story of Karen Wetterhahn who died after contact exposure to the chemical. Wetterhahn would recall that she had spilled one or two drops of dimethylmercury from the tip of a pipette onto her latex gloved hand. Tests later revealed that dimethylmercury can in fact rapidly permeate different kinds of latex gloves and enter the skin within about 15 seconds. Three weeks after the first neurological symptoms appeared, Wetterhahn lapsed into what appeared to be a vegetative state punctuated by periods of extreme agitation. One of her former students said that her husband saw tears rolling down her face. When asked if she was in pain, the doctors said it didn’t appear that her brain could even register pain. Wetterhahn was removed from life support and died, less than a year after her initial exposure.
7. Another one. Hydrofluoric acid. HF will dissolve your bones, attack your heart, wreck your enzymes, and cause horrible pain in multiple ways. Here’s Derek Lowe, describing chemists’ fear of HF: “At a former employer of mine, there was an accident with one of these machines right before I joined the company. The shout ‘HF LEAK!’ went out into the halls, and I’m told that the whole area set a never-to-be-equaled evacuation record. This was one of those drop-things-right-where-you-stand type evacuations, a real sauve qui peut moment.” Oh yeah, and remember how they used it on Breaking Bad? No chemist, ever, would do that. Any area of your body covered in a moderate amount of HF will kill you. It does not matter if it is the area is on the top of your right foot, unless you can neutralize it, you will die. HF eats through glass, you have to keep it in TFPE (tetrafluoropolyethylene) aka Teflon. This polymer holds HF because the carbon back bone is already completely fluorinated, and therefore is not able to be further attacked by HF.
8. HF isn’t even the worst. One I would call worse than HF but probably still not THE worst is dioxygen difluoride (FOOF) (notice the theme of fluorine being really fuc*ing bad). FOOF is a gas at room temperature that is also rapidly decomposing into oxygen (yay!) and fluorine (sh*t). This is an extremely strong oxidant that will react violently with almost everything (except gold). If you realize you have been exposed, too bad you are already probably dead. Why do we even use it? To make another FUN compound of course! Plutonium hexafluoride which can be isotopicly purified to create plutonium based nuclear fission weapons.
9. Wait, there is more! Who could forget to add osmium tetraoxide (OsO4) to the list of sh*t not to fu*k with? OsO4 actually has a practical use, by turning alkenes into alcohol groups as a syn addition. OsO4, however, is extremely deadly. It is a solid that sublimes to a gas at room temperature and pressure. There are two symptoms of poisoning from osmium tetraoxide. First you go blind. Second you die. If you go blind, too bad, you are already dead. Chemistry is full of things not to fu*k with. If you want to do at home chemistry, don’t do it unless you know what you are doing. There are some (relatively) safe things to do at home, but even those can be dangerous if you do not respect them.
10. You also have just fluorine gas (lets go with the FU*K fluorine motif a little more). Fluorine gas is even worse than chlorine gas (which is the war gas of WWI). It will eat away your lung tissue in a single lung full and leave you unable to get oxygen to the blood stream. You will literally suffocate/drown in the middle of a green meadow (not green for long) if you manage to inhale just a couple breaths of fluorine gas.
11-15 Things You Don’t Fu*K With
11. The ocean. It will kick you to the curb or swallow you whole. That’s mostly if you’re lucky. If you’re unlucky, it will sap your sanity, dry you to the bone, only then will it swallow you whole. I was born near a small fishing town. My grandpa (codfish fisherman back in the day) always told me not to turn my back to the sea, can be a sneaky bastard.
12. Wasps. They are far worse than a bee sting. Yellow jackets are cun*s too! I had to do battle with a small nest that got started in my gate this summer. I was chatting with a co-worker when I got stung. Just carrying on a normal conversation.
13. The church of scientology I reckon. Batsh*t crazy folks who even made the IRS go ‘fu*k this sh*t.’ In the early 90s, Scientology was facing a tax bill of over $1 billion. Every single member then filed multiple frivolous lawsuits not only against the IRS but against individual employees who were dealing with the members tax returns. This resulted in thousands, upon thousands of law suits being levied at the IRS. The IRS commissioner at the time held meetings with them and was told in no uncertain terms that if you assign them ‘religion’ status every single lawsuit would disappear, which is exactly what happened.
14. Do. Not. Fu*k. With. Skunks. It’s one thing to smell it on the highway, it is quite another up close. My dog got blasted in the face and then proceeded to run into the house, jump on my bed, and try to smear it off in my sheets. The whole house reeked of skunk for days. We had to throw a lot of stuff in the trash.
15. Don’t arm-wrestle a baker. Don’t get in a knife fight with a prep cook.
16-20 Things You Don’t Fu*K With
16. Bears. They’re the most terrifying thing in nature and I can confirm that as a fan of camping. They’re fast for their size and also unbelievably strong. I would never mess with a bear. Fun fact: Back in ancient Rome, the Romans had access to a whole spectrum of animals, from lions to tigers to bears to wolves. After all they had a massive empire that stretched from temperate forests to Mediterranean climate to deserts and mountains. They would pit all kinds of animals against each other in their coliseums. The bears always won. Always. Even against tigers or lions.
17. Payday loans and other short term loans with extremely high interest rates. I had a finance professor who said he had an answer to the question “what is the price of ignorance?” About 400% (annual percentage rate) APR.
18. The train. Never try to beat the train. The train is bigger and more powerful. It takes longer to stop. When you see those red lights flashing, stop. A freight train can easily take over a mile to stop. It literally does not have the braking ability to play chicken with you.
19. The small bouncer at a night club. That guy definitely knows some sh*t. A friend of mine that bounced at a couple really heavily frequented punk-rockish music venues also confused me because he’s a skinny bespectacled white dude like myself. He shows up at my regular bar one day looking beat to absolute sh*t. Fractured orbital, torn ear, his face is just pulped. I buy him a drink and ask him what the fu*k happened. He apparently had just gotten out of jail. His story was he roughly threw some drunk dudebro for throwing a beer at the stage, goes out to his car to get smokes 15 minutes later, and whose back there but the aforementioned bro dude and 4 of his buddies. He says he just squared up with them and said ‘alright, y’all are gonna fu*k me up, but first one that touches me is going to be in the hospital for a long time.’ They chuckled and start kicking the sh*t out of him. He finally got one under him, grabs the guy by the ears, and starts smashing his head into the pavement. He realizes that they’ve stopped kicking him and turns to hear one of his assailants go ‘dude stop, you’re gonna kill him.’ His line was ‘you’re g*ddamn right I am.’ Gives his dude one last headbutt/pavement slam and stands up and calls the cops. He put the guy in a coma, whole thing was on a security cam so he got out quickfast on self-defense. He finishes this story while casually drinking his drink and I say something to the effect of ‘dude, Jeff, what the fu*k, you’re a skinny white guy like me.’ He says ‘yeah, but I grew up in a foster home in Queens. When I was 9 a Puerto Rican kid knocked out my front teeth with a golf club, I know how to fight.’
20. A ‘bachelor’ group of 3-4 year old male lions. Walking in lion country isn’t particularly dangerous if you know what you are doing and can read body language, particularly if there is an old male with nothing to prove and a resting pride. But come across a group of ‘teenagers’, those guys are unpredictable, curious, full of sh*t and pretty much fully grown in terms of maximum size- so they can cause serious damage. They will want to come cause trouble just for the sake of it. Give them a wide-wide-wide berth.
21-25 Things You Don’t Fu*K With
21. Fire Ants. Those buggers are smart as hell and the pain and itching is just hell. They should be used to torture terrorists. If you accidently step in a fire ant nest, they will climb up your leg stealthily, without you noticing, until you are knee deep in ants. Then they will sound the war call and all begin biting you at once. They leave blisters and welts, and it really takes a day or so for the pain to go away. They also seem to know the weather better than the weather man. They would regularly begin putting their eggs in my mailbox before a big rainstorm. I’d open the mailbox to get mail, see a mound of white eggs in the back and I’d jump away & check my legs. One day, those suckers who had never before decided to come indoors suddenly appeared in an upstairs bathroom, creating a pile of eggs in a corner. Looong line of worker ants carrying the eggs from somewhere outside journeying along some route into my house I never knew existed. I checked my legs, then realized the sh*t was about to hit the fan weather-wise if the mailbox was suddenly not good enough. I lived inland in the Carolinas at the time. About four hours away from the coast and two from the Appalachian Mountains. Hurricanes did not normally affect me, except as remnant storms. This hurricane flooded much of the state, and my yard was under water for about a week. Those little jerks knew it ahead of time.
22. A gaggle of geese. Fu*k that. On my drive to the train every day, there is a park. This park is run by a gang of three geese. I’ve seen countless people stop to try to feed these geese or take their picture or whatever, only to realize that these geese want nothing to do with them. It’s never not funny to watch people try to make friends with the cute little geese, only to be chased away in terror.
23. This plant in Australia called Gympie Gympie that causes excruciating pain when touched. Some guy wiped his a*s with the leaves of this plant and shot himself due to the intense pain. I’ve actually had the unfortunate luck to have a run in with both this little cu*t of a plant as well as one of our fine nation’s cu*tiest marine animals; the irukandji jellyfish. I got a very light brush from the gympie gympie on my wrist and yes; it was fu*king painful. If you managed to wipe your a*s with them and had access to a firearm I’m pretty sure you’d use it. That pain lasted for a couple of weeks and the area of skin that got exposed to the plant couldn’t have been much bigger than a centimeter square (I had long sleeves and gloves on). I never got any recurring pain after it subsided but there is still numbness on my wrist. The little Jellycu*t though… I didn’t need to think about killing myself because I was almost certain I was going to die anyway. Luckily that only lasted a few days and I honestly don’t remember too much of it other than the pain was almost matched by the fear that my heart was going to explode. No lasting damage from that one as far as I can tell but I’m sure it took a few years off my life just from the stress my body went through.
24. Chainsaws. I’m a logger I own a skidder that weighs 20,000 pounds and could crush bone like its glass. I’ve got a buzz saw that will slice you in half within a split second and a saw mill that will turn you into 2x4s. But overall the most respected piece of equipment I own is a little 60 cc chainsaw that weighs 12 pounds. I have more one arm friends than I care to admit. I’ve seen 6 people die, saw kicks back cuts from your shoulder to your rip cage most go into shock but some don’t and bleed out very fast.
25. Manchineel tree. It is considered one of the most poisonous tree in the world. It causes painful blisters if you stand under it during rain, blinds you if the smoke from its burned wood touches your eyes, can poison water with its leaves. The fruits are the most obvious threat, earning manchineel the name manzanita de la muerte, or “little apple of death,” from Spanish conquistadors. Resembling a small green crabapple about 1 to 2 inches wide, the sweet-smelling fruits can cause hours of agony and potentially death with a single bite.