Things I Learned in Contractors Class: How Not to Die

Last month I almost fell off my chair in excitement when MysteryMan agreed to take the Residential Builders Pre-licensure courses with me, and believe me when I tell you I had us signed up and in that first class quicker than you could say “hold the insanity”, which is to say before MysteryMan had a chance to realize just what I was getting him in to.

Not that I have the inclination (or time) to be a professional Residential Builder… my Actual Real Job is demanding enough. I do have the desire to build a house that won’t collapse in a strong wind, or even worse, fails inspection, so I figure these classes can’t hurt. Okay, and also I love taking tests. I know, right? MysteryMan rolls his eyes too… but what can I say? I’m a dork. With tools.

How Not to Kill Yourself While Building a House

Our first class was probably one of the least fun, but most applicable, of the lot. Other than working Ricky to the point of a heart attack we haven’t had any major injuries. Although MysteryMan took a header off of the Station roof once. And then there was the incident with the ladder.

Okay. So maybe we need to spend a little additional time with our safety manuals. Not to worry, MIOSHA construction safety standards 101 straightened us out, and here you have it… our plan for an accident-free DIY residential construction.

Memorial House: A Plan for Death-free Building

All builders, subcontractors, friends, indentured servants, or people otherwise wielding bigass powertools shall:

  • Comply with the safe and proper use of equipment and tools. Which means wearing shoes. Mostly.


  • Use the proper safety equipment. Luggage straps wrapped around your belt loops do not constitute an appropriate harness for using the sawsall at plus-twelve feet.

Trimming down posts

  • Be aware of the potential harm from plants, insects, reptiles, or other animals. Like Harold the Peeping Opossum.


  • Only use tools that they are qualified to use.


  • Not work under the influence of an intoxicating beverage.


  • Maintain an organized worksite.


Any person(s) caught violating these rules will be prosecuted with additional drywall hanging duty.

It’s shocking,  but I totally got 100% on my MIOSHA safety standards test (so did MysteryMan), and hey look! They passed me.


One down, six to go. On this week’s syllabus: Business Management & Cost Estimating. If this dude tells me I can’t afford granite countertops, I’m totally walking out.

For actual real Accident Prevention Program templates, try here… they have several options to choose from.

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I'm not interested in a mediocre life. I'm here to kick ass or die.