EPIC FAIL: Blowing up a Christmas tree – Bruce Trek

EPIC FAIL: Blowing up a Christmas tree

This story was supposed to be much more awesome than it turned out. We set out to make an epic video of greatness. We came up a bit short.

I wanted to write about it anyway, if nothing else, maybe it will prevent others from making the same mistakes we made.

So here goes.

If you don't know what tannerite is, in short, it makes things go boom. It only explodes when struck with something traveling at super-sonic speed, like a bullet. Perfect for target practice, or in our case, blowing up a Christmas tree.

The plan was simple. My brother had a Christmas tree he needed to dispose of, so naturally, we decided blowing it up was the best possible solution. Driving out into the foggy, wintery wilderness to do this only seemed natural.

So we put some of the aforementioned tannerite together, got our gear, and headed out to the perfect spot to take care of business. Now here's where we complicated things. Without some epic video footage of this event, no one would know it happened. But not just any video footage, DRONE FOOTAGE. Because what says "epic" more than an explosion as seen from the sky? Nothing. Nothing says it more.

So we loaded up the drone, got in the truck, and picked up some witnesses. My Dad, Mom, and Sister decided to join us on our little adventure. Which was cool, because we knew this was going to be awesome, but having people watch us in our awesomeness, made it even more awesome.

Christmas tree

"Here's the plan," my brother said. "I'll fly the drone, because I know how to, and you will shoot the target. Think you can hit it?"

Well, you know the answer to that.

I set up a couple cameras up close to the tree and my brother started getting the drone ready.

"You ready yet?" I heard my brother call out to me. "Alright, alright, we're all set," I said as I ran back to our bunker and looked at the target.

I started getting in position, positioning my brother's 30 ought 6, confident that this would make for some epic content for you all to read. That's when I heard my Mom say, "make sure you give us a signal before you're going to fire." Good call, wouldn't want to frighten the witnesses, and I wasn't totally sure how long it would take me to line up the shot.

A rifle is pretty loud, so we were wearing ear protection. Only problem with that was it made it a bit difficult to hear each other. But, no big deal, we were all right there, ready to go.

"You ready?!" I hear my brother yell. 

I look through the scope, where I see the Christmas tree very up close. Lining up my eye with the target proves to be a bit challenging, but after a few moments I'm ready to go.

Knowing that everyone probably can't hear me with their ear protection on, I raise my hand to "give the signal." 

BAM. I fire the rifle and the tree launches a good 20 feet in the air with a massive explosion all around it. I start yelling, "Whoo! That was awesome! Did you guys see that?!"

I turn around, ready to be congratulated on my stellar marksmanship, but instead just see pure shock and disbelief.

No one saw it. The drone pilot had his back to the tree, and our witnesses were all watching my brother fly the drone, getting it into position. Camera wasn't rolling, no epic footage. EPIC FAIL. And sadly, we were out of Christmas trees and tannerite.

The lesson here is pretty simple, when faced with a moment you can only capture on camera once, over-communicating is probably better than under-communicating.

At least you can watch a cool explosion.


Nancy Jean Walker

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” —Thomas A. Edison
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/thomas_a_edison_132683

Take heart: this was but your FIRST failure, and I think you’ve already learned such valuable lessons regarding communication that this could be your only failure when it comes to the adventure of blowing up something.
(A certain witness pointed out to me that if you listen very carefully, you can hear someone shouting the name of the shooter with a voice of incredulity! :D That would be I.) ;)
The filming of an awesome explosion may have not turned out as you wished, but it sure was a lot of fun to go on this Trek with you Bruces!


Yes, at least we get to see a recording of the “cool explosion.”
Live and learn!


I love the end—“Evan!”
I think the story’s almost better the way it turned out! xD
Can’t wait to read more Bruce Trek stories!

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