The Straight Dope

Go Back   Straight Dope Message Board > Main > Mundane Pointless Stuff I Must Share (MPSIMS)

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 02-02-2000, 08:34 PM
bantmof bantmof is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Ok, I did not actually burn my house down, but I had a good go at it.

Make some tea. Put a big pot of water on the stove to boil, set the burner on "high", and then find something else to do for a few minutes while it heats up.

Then, since I'm apparently not playing with a full deck, leave the kitchen to do something else and forget all about the stove within the first 20 seconds. Go outside to change the oil in the cars and tighten up that pesky lose parking brake cable.

Come back in the house a while later to find: (A) the smoke alarm shrieking, (B) the house filled with black, noxious, foul smelling smoke, (C) the cat terrified out of her little furry mind, (D) enough smoke pouring out of the stove to make it hard to see the stove, (E) a red, glowing bit of metal that was once apparently my pot.

Shut off burner. Extinguish glowing remains of pot. Take battery out of smoke detector to shut it the hell up. Open windows to clear smoke. Reassure the cat.

At what age does Alzheimer's usually set in, anyway?

--
peas on earth
Reply With Quote
Advertisements  
  #2  
Old 02-02-2000, 08:45 PM
Guest
 
I think this incident handily demonstrates the need for a mandatory seven-day waiting period and a thorough background check prior to the purchase of major kitchen utensils.


Dr. Watson
"Earth: The lunatic asylum of the solar system." -- paraphrasing Samuel Parkes Cadman
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 02-02-2000, 08:45 PM
Studi Studi is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Those steps aren't very easy.

How the hell do you make tea?

Studi

------------------
Don't speak ill of your enemies; plot it.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 02-02-2000, 08:49 PM
Jodi Jodi is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
Quote:
At what age does Alzheimer's usually set in, anyway?
I don't know; how old are you?



------------------
Jodi

Fiat Justitia
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 02-02-2000, 08:51 PM
manhattan manhattan is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 9,132
Damn! Did I leave the iron on this morning?

Gotta go.

------------------
Livin' on Tums, vitamin E and Rogaine
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 02-02-2000, 08:52 PM
manhattan manhattan is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 9,132
Oh, and P.S. Glad everything turned out OK.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 02-02-2000, 08:55 PM
Demo Demo is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Don't forget to put the batterey back in the smoke detector! ;-)

------------------
"Every one is bound to bear patiently the results of his own example. "
-Phædrus
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 02-02-2000, 08:56 PM
psycat90 psycat90 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Iron? what's an iron?

------------------
Always be ready to speak your mind and a base man will avoid you.
-William Blake
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 02-02-2000, 09:02 PM
manhattan manhattan is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 9,132
Quote:
Originally posted by psycat90:
Iron? what's an iron?

"An iron" is simply one part of "a set of irons." I'll leave it to the reader to decide whether "irons" refers to golf or bondage.

------------------
Livin' on Tums, vitamin E and Rogaine
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 02-02-2000, 09:22 PM
bantmof bantmof is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Quote:
How the hell do you make tea?
Put tea bags in boiling water. But I think it isn't actually necessary to complete the tea in order to successfully burn the house down. You just have to start making it, so you can fake knowledge of the trickier parts involving the actual tea bags.

--
boiled peas on earth
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 02-02-2000, 10:12 PM
Shayna Shayna is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
I'll see your tea and raise you one tortilla.

Just so you know you're not alone, I'll give you my version of How to almost burn your house down in 2 easy steps...

1. Put a flour tortilla in the oven to warm it up a bit.
2. Get on the internet and forget all about the warming tortilla.

I had not only the thick, black, noxious smoke, but huge flames shooting through the oven door and up the cabinets. Thank goodness nothing but the tortilla caught fire. Cleaning the residue from the soot was a disgusting job. ICK! I now know why people die in fires from smoke inhalation. My lungs were burning within 5 seconds of that crap getting in them.

I also removed the battery from my smoke alarm. Note to self: check to see if I ever put it back.

My mother set the kitchen on fire so many times we bought her a kitchen fire extingisher for her birthday one year!

------------------
"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world." - Anne Frank
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 02-02-2000, 10:19 PM
Ruffian Ruffian is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
1. Light two scented candles to burn away unpleasant cleaning chemicals following housecleaning.

2. Completely forget about the candles and accompany boyfriend to his recording session, leaving them to burn for FIVE FREAKIN' HOURS unchecked in an empty apartment, save one cat and 11 fish.

Was there smoke or flames? Well, no, excepting the candle flame itself. But it was so incredibly dumb...ah, man that was the most stressful drive home (it was only when we got in the car to come home that I remembered). I was just hoping that the most likely ending was true--they burned themself out. Remarkably, they were still burning and still have plenty of candlewax left.

Apartment smelled nice, though.

------------------
formerly known as LauraRae

I'm a Raggety Ann in a Barbie Doll world.

Laura's Stuff and Things
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 02-02-2000, 10:32 PM
GraceTX GraceTX is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
My two steps for burning the house down:

1. Put a chicken pot pie in the oven.
2. Fall asleep on the couch.

I woke up hours later only to discover my pot pie completely black and the consistency of charcoal.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 02-02-2000, 10:36 PM
Babar714 Babar714 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Or you could just let some dumbass fall asleep in a downstairs basement with a candle lit. Worked for us.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 02-02-2000, 11:02 PM
Studi Studi is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Quote:
so you can fake knowledge of the trickier parts involving the actual tea bags.
Score!

Studi

------------------
When I grow up, I want to be the Minister of Silly Walks.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 02-02-2000, 11:42 PM
Guest
 
My husband is known around here as the Great-Destroyer-and-Murderer-Of-Teapots. In our married life I believe he has done in three, including one beautiful copper and porcelain model I inherited from my mother. Melted the stuffin' right out of 'em.

It's becoming a new tradition in our house to try to burn it down on Christmas Day. In 1998, the method used was to place holiday candles on the dinner table, which was covered by a pretty paper (hey, I got KIDS!) tablecloth. I'm not sure but I think somebody knocked over a candle, setting the paper on fire. Quick action by our very own Andrea/Witewytch saved the day.

In 1999, the method was the more common distracted-by-toy-airplanes-in-trees-leads-to-kitchen-grease-fire approach. Hubby had a skillet on the stove with oil heating in it; I was outside extricating an AirHog (don't ask) from a tree into which Youngest Son had flown it. The toy was dislodged and handed to Youngest Son, who promptly flew it into another tree, higher this time, and one belonging to a neighbor. Gamely I went for the ladder, and hubby came out to see what the racket was all about. He grabbed a fruit-picking pole and came over, climbed the ladder, and managed to obtain the toy.

All of a sudden loud noises start coming from the house, and Eldest Son is at the door shouting. Thank goodness for Eldest Son -- he was at the 'puter (which is in the room next to and open to the kitchen) when the smoke alarm starting going off. The oil was smoking mightily, but had not yet caught fire. Eldest Son was able to shut off the flame underneath the grease and cover it with a lid (damn good for a 14 year old, wouldn't you say?).

We're thinking of going away for the holiday next year . . . .

-Melin
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 02-03-2000, 12:27 AM
Enright3 Enright3 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 5,511
1) As a 16 y/o kid, go over to big brothers apt because he lives on his own.
2) Watch as brother and his friend pour grain alcohol (about half an inch) in coke bottle, and drop in a lit match to see if they can make a fire in the bottom of the coke bottle.
3) Ohh and ahh while flame burns, but only hovers in the neck of said coke bottle.
4) After this gets boring, watch brother's friend attempt to pour more grain alcohol into coke bottle in hopes that flame will follow the pouring liquid DOWN into the coke bottle, thus moving the fire down to the bottom of the coke bottle (see number 1)
5) watch in horror as flame moves UP into bottle of grain alcohol and scares brothers friend into throwing buring Everclear bottle across the room against the wall and the curtains, catching everything in it's path on fire.

Ahh yes, nothing like the 70's.

Enright3


------------------
"You tryin' to tell me Jesus Christ can't hit a curve ball?" - Eddie Harris(Major League)
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 02-03-2000, 12:38 AM
TripleAnt TripleAnt is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
A few years ago, my brother was all at the same time: Talking on the phone, watching wrestling and making popcorn the old way, using oil and such. It was pretty funny watching the cabinets go up in flames. I guess the new ones look better anyways.

------------------
"The idea of a walk-in closet sounds frightening. If I'm ever sittin' at home and a closet walks in, I'm gettin' outta there." ~George Carlin
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 02-03-2000, 02:31 AM
bantmof bantmof is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Quote:
We're thinking of going away for the holiday next year . . . .
I dunno... might be wise to be around just to put out whatever fire your neighbors, burglers, and/or household pets would have set in your absence.

--
peas on earth
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 02-03-2000, 04:38 AM
GuanoLad GuanoLad is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Where the wild roses grow
Posts: 19,654
Literally two steps:

1) Have an open fireplace with embers still burning

2) Go to sleep

End result, total destruction of entire house, except for comedic cliche singular bathtub, and singular chimney stack. (But we all got out alive, at least)

This was in 1976, when I were but a nipper.

------------------
-PIGEONMAN-
Returns!

The Legend Of PigeonMan - By Popular Demand! Enjoy, enjoy!
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 02-03-2000, 04:43 AM
tenspeedjohn tenspeedjohn is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
1. Put some new baby bottle nipples in a pot of boiling water and go to sleep.

2. Not only do they burn (once all the water is gone), they become tiny, black, floaty things that cover every surface the air currents can reach.

------------------
If chickens could pee, they would be wet on the bottom.
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 02-03-2000, 05:31 AM
Harmonious Discord Harmonious Discord is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Put greasy meat under broiler in oven. Watch smoke and flames coming out of the oven vent on top. Throw a ton of salt on grease fire to extenguise the flames. Spend the next two days cleaning up greasy soot in the kitchen. I will never use the broiler again except to brown the top of garlic bread or pizza.

------------------
I'm only your wildest fear, from the corners of your darkest thoughts.
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 02-03-2000, 07:18 AM
BoBettie BoBettie is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
Oh! Oh! Me! I got one!

Watch Martha Stewart making "Gingerbread Ornaments" for her Christmas tree. Hate the bitch for being so domestic. Make your OWN damned gingerbread men/ornaments.

[quick side note] these things are a ton of cinnamon and very little water mixed into a paste, then heated in a slow oven until all dried out. They smell good (not edible) and you hang 'em on the tree [/quick side note]

Put the gingerbread men in the oven. Note that YOUR oven doesn't adjust as low as Martha's, but figure "What the heck". Let men dry in oven for several hours.

Smell smoke. Look in oven to see FLAMING GINGERBREAD MEN. (one of the funniest things I've ever seen) Open the oven door, creating WORSE flaming gingerbread men. Grab a mitt and remove tray, throwing them all violently out the back door into the snow.

Spend next two hours airing out the house. (what an awful smell)

Listen in amazement when husband gets home and says "Mmmmm..smells good in here. Did you bake?"

Zette

------------------
Love is like popsicles...you get too much you get too high.

Not enough and you're gonna die...
Click here for some GOOD news for a change Zettecity
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 02-03-2000, 09:45 AM
KCB615 KCB615 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Southcoast Massachusetts
Posts: 780
Just making my requisite stop by this thread.

As Democritus so aptly put it,
Quote:
Don't forget to put the batterey back in the smoke detector! ;-)
I second that.

Thank you for your time, now back to your regularly scheduled thread.


------------------
Jeremy....

Nobody ever calls me after they've done something smart.
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 02-03-2000, 09:52 AM
Padeye Padeye is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: Phoenix, AZ, US
Posts: 7,672
Quote:
Originally posted by Crick&Watson:
I think this incident handily demonstrates the need for a mandatory seven-day waiting period and a thorough background check prior to the purchase of major kitchen utensils.
When stoves are outlawed, only outlaws will hav stoves.


------------------
My Jesus fish can beat up your Darwin fish but forgives it instead.
Reply With Quote
  #26  
Old 02-03-2000, 09:55 AM
phouka phouka is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
How about "How to Burn Your House Down for Dummies"?

1) Start roaring fire in fireplace.

2) Realize that the flue is not open.

When the thick black smoke starts pouring out and the flames start looking for more air, dash in and open the flu. If the adreneline surge makes you as quick as I was, you'll only singe your arm hairs.

Of course, repainting the wall is a bitch.
Reply With Quote
  #27  
Old 02-03-2000, 10:10 AM
missdavis102 missdavis102 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Me next!

My latest trick is a variation on the tea thing - fill pan with water, heat to low boil, turn slightly down, pour out 1 teacup full, refill. Make cup of tea, watch tv, drink. Repeat 3 cups worth, then go to bed without turning off stove. Sleep 8 hours.
It is really amazing the beating those corning-ware glass pans can take. What was left of the nonstick surface was sort of a neon blue glowing deal. I've done this particular thing twice.

My old trick was to place pan of miscellaneous vegetable on the stove to heat, turn on wrong burner, set pizza pan on unintentionally hot burner and wait 15 minutes. I'd never seen actual flames coming out of a stove before. It was really impressive.

The only other time I ever had a fire was in college, when I accidentally set my bed afire, but that's another story altogether.
Reply With Quote
  #28  
Old 02-03-2000, 10:14 AM
BoBettie BoBettie is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
May I also suggest that this thread serve as a reminder for everyone to go out and buy a fire extinguisher for your kitchen? I have one right under my sink, and now can make Martha Stewart projects and tea without fear of panicking in the event of a flare up.
Zette

------------------
Love is like popsicles...you get too much you get too high.

Not enough and you're gonna die...
Click here for some GOOD news for a change Zettecity
Reply With Quote
  #29  
Old 02-03-2000, 10:33 AM
BunnyGirl BunnyGirl is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
Zette's right - your insurance company will usually give you a small discount if you've got one too!

I didn't burn the house down but I've been known to put a pan of water on the stove (for humidity in my Sahara house) and then proceed to take a nap while the pan boils dry and starts to get this weird warp to it. I usually don't mention it to my husband....he's a little nervous about that kind of thing!
Reply With Quote
  #30  
Old 02-03-2000, 10:42 AM
Shirley Ujest Shirley Ujest is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
I haven't burned down the house yet, but I have something to go under the chapter of {i}
"Dumb Things I've Tried To Burn In The Fire Place." [/i]

Bringing back from Puerto Vallarta a wooden carved eagle that I purchased from a beach vendor for the grand total of $5 usd. ( I was still probably robbed, but I liked it and gave it to my husband as a tacky Xmas Gift) We nick named the bird, The Maltese Falcon.

A couple weeks later, the bird does a nose dive and his beak breaks off. Very unbecoming and I decide ( In a house by myself) that since the fireplace ( a heatilator) is roaring, to toss the bird in the flames. A few minutes later the entire house just stinks from whatever wood that bird was carved from and treated with. Probably an endangered tree and mind altering chemicals, knowing Mexico's safety standards.

I manage with tongs to get it out on to the hearth and use a wet towel to rush it out into the cold cruel February snows to smolder and smoke in the snow. I haven't lived the episode down since.

Next Week I shall try to shove a couch into the fire place to see what noxious fumes it produces.
Reply With Quote
  #31  
Old 02-03-2000, 11:17 AM
Ukulele Ike Ukulele Ike is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Posts: 10,633
Quote:
Originally posted by manhattan:
Damn! Did I leave the iron on this morning?
I'm still wondering just who manhattan left the iron ON.

------------------
Uke
Reply With Quote
  #32  
Old 02-03-2000, 11:22 AM
Mullinator Mullinator is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
My 2 steps for burning down a house.

1. Marry a member of TLC.
2. Piss off that member of TLC.

------------------
Have you voted for your favorite, huggable Mullinator today?
Reply With Quote
  #33  
Old 02-03-2000, 01:45 PM
tatertot tatertot is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Posts: 2,633
When I was a child, I once set a vacant lot on fire while trying to make a burnt sacrifice to God.
Reply With Quote
  #34  
Old 02-03-2000, 01:59 PM
dougie_monty dougie_monty is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Gardena, CA 90248-3235
Posts: 7,274
Various procedures:
1)Hang cotton garment over bulbs on floor lamp in parents' room.
2) Don't tell parents you did it.
3) Anticipate parents' grilling and likelihood YOU will be strapped with Dad's belt.

1) Pour hot grease into sink directly from stove (electric).
2) Don't look for flammable material already in stove.

1) Set up hibachi in living room, complete with glowing coals and steaks to cook.
2) Ignore protests of your aunt and cousin.

1) Select TV dinner from freezer.
2) Preheat oven and unwrap dinner according to instructions on label.
3) Go off somewhere and forget about TV dinner, preferably in late evening.
4) When cousin bawls you out because he was awakened after midnight by smoke detector, and your aunt gets on your case too, act innocent.
Reply With Quote
  #35  
Old 02-03-2000, 02:00 PM
dougie_monty dougie_monty is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Gardena, CA 90248-3235
Posts: 7,274
Excuse me--for 2) in Procedure 2, it should read "flammable material already in sink."
Reply With Quote
  #36  
Old 02-03-2000, 02:13 PM
Cartooniverse Cartooniverse is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Betwixt My Ears
Posts: 11,079
God, Tatertot, you have friends in Staten Island, NY. In 1995, I was shooting a movie there, and JUST as we wrapped, and I was pulling away, I saw flames on the tall grasses in the corner of a lot. By the time I stopped ( in the middle of traffic ), pulled on my Blue Tights with the required "S" ( for "Semite" rofl) on the bosom, and tore over there the the small fire extinguisher I keep in the van, it was really roaring. I got it out, but was VERY shaken.

Cartooniverse
Stop sacrificing to the gods !!!!

------------------
If you want to kiss the sky, you'd better learn how to kneel.
Reply With Quote
  #37  
Old 02-03-2000, 02:18 PM
Dirty Devil Dirty Devil is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Posts: 640
How to (almost) burn your garage down:

1) Open a beer (like I really had to tell that beer was invloved!)
2) Heat up soldering iron so you can melt random stuff around the garage (Democritus will know exactly what I'm talking about here)
3) Clumsily prop iron up on wooden work bench
4) Go into house to get another beer
5) See that you're missing that Winston Cup race on TV and sit and watch it for two hours
6) Remember that you left the garage door open and that you should probably go close it
7) Drink more beer and watch TV for another hour
8) Jump up off the couch in a wild panic when you realize that you left the goddamn soldering iron plugged in
9) Run to garage to discover that the soldering iron has burned a hole through the workbench and that the wood is dangerously close to actually catching on fire
10) Pour beer on it to put it out
11) Go to Home Depot and buy more wood to make another workbench (stopping by Safeway on the way home for more beer, of course).

Oh, did I happen to mention that beer was invloved in this?

-----------------------------------
Beer. It's not just for putting out fires anymore.
Reply With Quote
  #38  
Old 02-03-2000, 02:29 PM
SwimmingRiddles SwimmingRiddles is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
First of all, applause on one of the funniest threads I have read...ever. Tears here, people.

My three tales of Near Death By Fire.

1.) I was 5. It was the hey-day of My Little Ponies, and I was wild for them. I had just gotten one with an extra long mane and tail. It was beautiful. After grooming it, I decided it was dirty and smelled funny, so I needed to wash it's nylon hair. However, that made it wet. What fun is a wet My Little Pony? So I propped a lamp with a bare bulb against the Pony's head, and left the bedroom I shared with my infant sister. 20 mintes later my mom goes to check on said napping infant sister, and screams "THE BABY'S ROOM IS ON FIRE!" Turns out the lamp had fallen, and burned a light bulb shaped half-circle about 3 inches deep into the floor. No flames, but a LOT of smoke. And Hopie (sister) had slept through the whole thing.

2.) Flash forward to about 2 months ago. The light in my kitchen had gone out, and the ceilings are increadibly high. I tried standing on a chair, to no avail. My roommate's boyfriend is like 6' 6", so she nominated him for the job. So it was dark in the kitchen, I turned on the stove to make...guess what? Tea. Except in the dark, I turned on the wrong burner and a paper plate went up. But I didn't realise it until I was in the living room with my roomie, watching TV, and I see light in the kitchen. "That's strange," thought I. "The bulb is out in the kitchen...FIRE!" Sure enough, not only had the paper plate gone up, but so had the wicker plate form it was on. HUGE flames. The fire alarm had not gone off (turns out they haven't been checked since '97) but I threw a pot of dish water on it, and it put it out.

3.) At my friend's house, in the basement. Her mother calls "Girls, get upstairs, there's a pie!" We got all excited, and scampered upstairs. Turns out it was FIRE, not pie. It put itself out, but the fire dept. came, and this kid I went to high school with is now a fireman. Terribly embarrassing. And I never got my pie.

------------------
One must have chaos in oneself to give birth to a dancing star. -Nietzche
Reply With Quote
  #39  
Old 02-03-2000, 11:29 PM
Guest
 
Oooooh - my turn:

1) Give 3 year old son plenty of 36" square cotton blankets to sleep with.
2) Put a cute night light in his bedroom. At all costs, avoid asking son if he WANTS a night light.
3) Allow said son to figure out how to make the room nice and dark for himself.



------------------
Sue from El Paso
- Siamese attack puppet - Texas

Experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted.
Reply With Quote
  #40  
Old 02-03-2000, 11:38 PM
Guest
 
Ahh man. You wanna burn the house down? Tha roof, tha roof, tha roof is on fiyah! We don' need no wattah let tha muthafucka burn! It's just this easy. Only <font size=+3>1</font> easy step.
1) Invite my ex over.

Her name is Heather. She smokes... a lot. While at your house, she will catch something on fire. She almost barbequed us when we were housesitting for her parents.
If you live in Albuquerque, NM, you probably heard about an apartment complex that burned to the ground. Any guesses as to where she lived and how it started?

------------------
Fat Guy in a Little Coat,
SDMB Self-Righteous Clique

Quote:
"And on the eighth day, God Created beer
to prevent the Irish from taking over
the Earth."
Reply With Quote
  #41  
Old 02-04-2000, 12:31 AM
Guy Incognito Guy Incognito is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
Oooh, my turn!

A few years back, some friends and I got ahold of some of the "Get Even" books by George Hayduke. One of the things that interested me was the instructions for making a solid version of the old saltpeter/sugar smoke bombs. Basically, you used the same proportions, but you would solidify the mass by cooking it over low heat.

In Guy-speak, this translated into: "Set up a sterno stove in the fireplace and cook up the stuff in an aluminum jello mold for a more-festive smoke bomb. Add match heads and sulphur for garnish."

I had heard the term "flash point" before but had never seen it in action until that afternoon. The mixture went off with a bluish flame just as I was leaning over to stir it with a Pyrex wand. Singed my eyebrows and filled the basement with thick white smoke. I'm lucky I didn't catch myself and the rest of the house on fire.

Oh, the humanity!



------------------
"It's only common sense,
There are no accidents 'round here."
Reply With Quote
  #42  
Old 02-04-2000, 12:48 AM
Ruffian Ruffian is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Swimming Riddles reminded me of another one...as a small child, I loved this new mini-doll. She was some kind of fairy, or something, no more than 2" long...she came in a spoon "home." (I remember each doll in the collection came in some sort of household item "home"). Mine had lovely bright green hair.

I played with her in the bathrub, and like Riddles, wanted to dry her (nylon) hair. So, I put her right up against a light bulb in my sister's lamp.

Go downstairs, eat dinner, watch cartoons, get confronted by an irate sister as her room is filled with smoke and the foul smell of melted nylon.

My poor little green haired doll now had a blackened, melted blob on her head. No other damage done, except to my psyche...I was so horrified at what had happened I cried myself sick. At least Mom didn't get mad at me.

------------------
formerly known as LauraRae

I'm a Raggety Ann in a Barbie Doll world.

Laura's Stuff and Things
Reply With Quote
  #43  
Old 02-04-2000, 12:50 AM
pluto pluto is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Quote:
Originally posted by missdavis102:
The only other time I ever had a fire was in college, when I accidentally set my bed afire, but that's another story altogether.
Yes. I'm sure it is.



------------------
I'm a vegetarian once removed. I only eat meat from animals that are vegetarians.
Reply With Quote
  #44  
Old 02-04-2000, 02:45 AM
Rilchiam Rilchiam is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Once when I was 13 or so, I made a coffee cake. Unfortunately, my mom has never given up her belief in the kitchen fairies, which will take care of things like the roasting pan full of congealed fat (lower rack) and pizza box with hardened pizza (upper rack) which were in the oven when I started preheating it. I opened the oven to put the cake in and flames shot out at me. I tried to throw baking soda on it, but it was way beyond that. Luckily, my dad heard the commotion, and I learned how to work a fire extinguisher. Moral: Always LOOK in the oven before you preheat it. Second moral: The kitchen fairies have many houses to visit. Do them a favor and clean the roasting pan yourself.

------------------
Remember, I'm pulling for you; we're all in this together.
---Red Green
Reply With Quote
  #45  
Old 02-04-2000, 11:49 AM
pixel pixel is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
You guys have it all wrong.

HERE'S how you burn down a house: douse it with gasoline, drop a burning match in said gasoline, run like hell, and then...

Whoops, I gotta go. I see my parole officer walking up the driveway.
Reply With Quote
  #46  
Old 02-04-2000, 02:55 PM
John Corrado John Corrado is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Laurel, MD, USA
Posts: 3,684
How to set oneself on fire in three easy steps:

1.) Have long hair.
2.) Don't bother to wash your hair for two days in a row.
3.) Light a cigarette just as a forelock falls down across your face.

There was a sudden fwoom, and my entire field of vision was full of flames. Thankfully, before I could even finish the thought, "Oh my f---ing God my f---ing hair is on fire" it suddenly went out, leaving me none the worse for wear (although with an interesting stench for the next hour or so).

------------------
JMCJ

This is not a sig.
Reply With Quote
  #47  
Old 02-04-2000, 03:15 PM
beefymeg beefymeg is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Mine:

1. Be an impatient seven-year-old girl
2. Receive a "glow-in-the-dark hair" (or something really similar) Barbie.
3. Prop Barbie up against a light bulb to REALLY make her "glow."

That Barbie was known as "Gaping Hole-In-The-Head, Hairless" Barbie for the next six years or so.

------------------
Sucks to your assmar.
Reply With Quote
  #48  
Old 02-04-2000, 03:19 PM
SwimmingRiddles SwimmingRiddles is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Quote:
Originally posted by beefymeg:
1. Be an impatient seven-year-old girl
2. Receive a "glow-in-the-dark hair" (or something really similar) Barbie.
3. Prop Barbie up against a light bulb to REALLY make her "glow."
Wow. By my count that makes 3 of us who almost set the house on fire by leaning dolls against light bulbs to dry their hair. This does not count the numerous times I "curled" different dolls' hair with my sister's curling iron. We should form a club.

------------------
Habit rules the unreflecting herd. - Wordsworth
Reply With Quote
  #49  
Old 02-04-2000, 03:24 PM
Miss Gretchen Miss Gretchen is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
I'm the appointed fire marshall among my friends. When we have weekends at my friend's cabin, I am in charge of everything that gets ignited: the BBQ, the fireworks, and the massive bonfire that somehow has never killed us. The wood for said fire often is a few feet taller than me prior to ignition. (The wood igniting, not me.) The weirdest thing is, I am the safest person in the world around fire, but am totally accident prone in every other aspect of my life. This morning, for example, I cut my hand open (blood 'n everything) on A SPIRALL BOUND NOTEBOOK! Not a paper cut, but the plastic spirall. Huh?

Now, when it comes to fire, fireworks, etc., I have an umblemished safety record. (I'd knock on wood, but then the wood pile would fall over and kill me.)
Reply With Quote
  #50  
Old 02-04-2000, 03:25 PM
C3 C3 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 4,037
How about this:
Be an impatient 9 year old girl.
Decide that the Christmas presents are probably in the attic.
Decide that a candle is probably your best source of lighting in this instance.

Not me, my cousin. Burned the ENTIRE house down to the ground a week before Christmas.

This is not the only house she's burned down...we're starting to get a bit suspicious.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:19 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@chicagoreader.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Publishers - interested in subscribing to the Straight Dope?
Write to: sdsubscriptions@chicagoreader.com.

Copyright © 2013 Sun-Times Media, LLC.