I thought I would post this just to point out how stupid I can be.
Maybe it will help someone else.
Saturday afternoon I decided to continue work on a work bench I've
been working on for a year - almost the whole time I've been
woodworking. I had my homemade crosscut sled on the table saw. It's
design doesn't allow for the original guard. I lifted it off to make
a single rip cut, thinking I wouldn't need the guard for one cut. I
ran the piece through using two hard maple push sticks. Just after it
went through I noticed the cutoff piece dancing by the blade and
decided to move it with the stick. I heard a "click" as the stick
touched the blade and then all hell broke loose. The blade caught the
stick and drove it back into my hand.
The net is, eight stitches in my hand, but no loss of function.
There a couple really stupid things I did here. First of course, is
that the guard wasn't on. This would have completely prevented the
accident. Secondly, if I had cut the way I had been taught, turning
the saw off before removing the piece, it wouldn't have happened.
Finally, my homemade push stick, although very stylish, should not
have come to a point at the back end. (Damn that was stupid!)
One more point - I should have made sure I could get the first aid kit
off of the wall easily. This was the first time it was opened and I
didn't even know what was in it. Although things worked out this time
maybe I need to think this stuff through some more.
I hope that helps other novices. Thanks.