This is the true story of my friend the programmer, who was locked in the bathroom by his cats, and then thrown out of the window when he tried to escape.
My friend David is a bright man, a programmer, in fact. He works for one of the subsidiary companies of the local RBOC, and is building the Information Hyperbahn. Think upon his foresight, his planning, and his powerful logical processes when your TV-top unit insists on showing "The Brady Bunch" when you ask for "The Maltese Falcon", and your stock market report says "Low cloud at the coast, gradually clearing inland by midday."
David hasn't been home much recently, as his job has been keeping him late; it's a three hour commute there and back, and he really feels like a beer after a long day, so he usually stops off for a quick one or two at the local on his way home. He has perhaps been neglecting his cats a bit.
When David got home from the pub the other night, he went to use his bathroom. His bathroom door handle has been broken for about six months now, but living alone, and being very busy, he hasn't got around to fixing it; he just doesn't close the door all the way.
While he was in the bathroom, his cats, Bert and Sebastian, rushed into the bathroom to be with him. Frolicking madly, Sebastian jumped against the door, pushing it shut with such force that the doorknob and spindle fell out into the hallway.
David couldn't open the door. He spent forty-five minutes trying to open the door using ordinary household equipment such as one might find in the bathroom. Meanwhile, Bert and Sebastian were happily cavorting about his feet, reveling in the presence of the beloved one.
Finally David came to the conclusion that the only way out was via the window. David lives on the second floor, but he was sure that it would be O.K. if he just got out and lowered himself by his hands, as he would then only have a four-foot drop: no big deal.
Of course, to get out of the window, he had to climb into the bath and take down the curtains, but after that it was fairly easy.
Bert and Sebastian were not too happy that the can-opener was escaping, and just as David had let himself down off the window-sill and was contemplating his next move, Sebastian jumped onto David's shoulder, an event for which David was totally unprepared.
He crawled upstairs and waited until seven in the morning to call me before he called an ambulance. He'd broken both his heels and cracked his fourth and fifth lumbar vertebrae: a week in hospital, and seven weeks in two casts and a wheelchair.
His company has put in an extra phone line for him, and he can do all his programming via modem. Now he's home all the time. Bert and Sebastian are, of course, delighted.