Happy Fourth of July, everyone! Despite budgetary cutbacks nationwide, it's safe to assume that most of you reading this will be seeing fireworks tonight, yes?
Yeah, you probably will. Fireworks can trace their origins all the way back to 7th century China, but here in America, we've used them to commemorate out Independence Day since the very first one in 1777. Heck, we even used them before that for celebrations.
Americans just love fireworks. Some Americans love fireworks a bit too much. Fireworks can be incredibly dangerous if they're not used properly, and usually when people suffer fireworks-related injuries or deaths, it's pretty obvious that they weren't using them as directed.
For instance, four people died in 2011 in fireworks-related accidents, according to the CPSC. But each and every one of them were (presumably) responsible adults between the ages of 30 and 50 who suffered fatal burns and even decapitation from, and I quote, "an illegal firework device" or "a homemade firework device."
However, given the amount of fireworks used legally and illegally every year on the Fourth of July, you'd think there'd be more deaths. These things aren't really very good at killing us, so there are plenty of incidents of firework failure we can look to for laughter.
1. Russian Roulette
There's not much background to this video, except that it was taken in Russia at some point. In it, you see a group of old men idiotically sitting around a table waiting for a firework device to go off. It's like they don't expect what eventually happens will eventually happen, but it does. One man falls back-asswards out of his chair, the loser in this round of Russian roulette.
2. We Don't Need No Water, Let The Mutha Burn! [NSFW]
This is why we can't have nice things. A group of people gathered on a suburban street set off what appears to be some pretty defective fireworks when the device suddenly explodes and sets the whole street off in a colorful explosion. The best part, of course, is the guy filming the video's running commentary. Make sure you hang on until well after the explosion when he realizes his lawn is on fire.
3. High Noon
There are dozens of "Roman candle fight" videos out there, but this one is an unsung hero, if you ask me. I can't help but appreciate their commitment to theatricality here. Two young guys stage a classic Wild West showdown, each armed with a Roman candle. You know the rest.
4. Kids Can Be Cruel Little B-Tards [NSFW]
An oldie but a goodie. Kid on bike thinks he's in control of the situation, thinks he knows what's up. Thinks he has his friend's number, the friend who approaches him from behind and throws a firework under his bike. Our main player says something weird about "you were going to piss on me" which I hope is not a normal thing kids do, but then the fireworks go off and... well... you must watch.
5. Thunder Nuts [NSFW]
The title of this entry reflects the YouTube user (Thundernuts00) who brought this hilarious video to the Internet. All I have to say about this one is "get ready to cringe." This, more than any other video in this article, demonstrates that whole "fireworks are only dangerous when used improperly" thing. Don't try this at home, but feel free to laugh at this schmuck's misfortune as a live rocket burrows into his rear.
Happy Fourth of July! Here's a bonus fireworks fail compilation for you before you head to your cookout:
[Image via: Evgeniyqw / Shutterstock]