Burning down the house (for the entertainment value)

In a thread in GQ, Scruff posted a mention of grape racing that started me thinking about various pursuits of the past that were largely ill-advised, but entertaining nonetheless.

One of my college favorites involved taking a bowl and filling it with dishwashing liquid (no water, just the straight stuff). Then we’d take a rubber hose and connect it to a gas outlet (hmm, I haven’t noticed those in newer homes). You’d stick the open end of the hose down in the dishwashing liquid and slowly open the gas valve. You’d get bubbles that would aggregate on the surface until, when the aggregation finally reached the size of a melon (well, a BIG cantaloupe or a wimpy watermelon), the Starship Dove would lift off.

And it would rise, slowly. At head heighth (who could wait any longer), a lit Zippo at its derriere produced a satisfying burst of flame.

(You didn’t want a fine covering of dish soap all over the room? Why didn’t you say so?)

So what did y’all do?

Why do you use dishwashing liquid? I usually put the Zippo right next to my ass. The effect is not only more exciting, but you get an instant “ass-waxing” in the process.

And it really scares the shit outta the hampster!! :wink:

My experience tells me a Zippo is cantraindicated for self-generated methane flares. That’s a job for a butane lighter.