Subject: Fire is hot. For sure.

Date: 14 Jun 1996 00:00:00 GMT

From: megeliz@radix.net (MegEliz)

Organization: Gene Wolfe Library and Family Restaurant, East Wing

Newsgroups: alt.slack, alt.foot.fat-free

 

No doubt, somebody out there is going to say that I'm a bad mother.

That's okay, I'm not YOUR mother (with the possible exception of

Friday, who may or may not be my baby, depending on time control

concepts I haven't figgered out yet). I had a creative leap in

mothering the other day, and here's how it went.

 

Sparky has become fascinated with lighters, matches and fire tools in

general. A weekly barbecue just does not provide enough flames to

study and cherish, it seems. She has been very conscientious about

tracking all the flame sources in the house and telling me when I

forget to put them out of reach. So I started to get a tad nervous.

 

After a little conferencing we decided to let her have some "fire

experiments." My theory being that if she gained a little knowledge

and respect for the stuff, we might avoid any fun surprises like

toasted teddy bears.

 

For our first and final experiment we took down a box of Ohio Blue

Tips (courtesy of an anonymous felonious donor) and I showed her how

to light a match. She was gleeful and thoroughly attentive. Still, she

missed a small detail. When it was her turn, Sparky lit the match on

the third try, but held it pointed down and immediately freaked out

and started shrieking that the fire was HOT! I blew it out quickly

enough that she didn't get any sort of burn: fast action was

essential, because the surprise blew her mind to the point that she

didn't react by just DROPPING it. Stunned by the unpleasantness of the

whole adventure, she just kept talking, (actually, these days she

never stops talking), "I don't EVER want to do that again. I'm not

going to use matches EVER. Not even when I'm a grown-up. I don't want

to even LOOK at the lighter." Etc.

 

Too bad all lessons aren't that easy.

 

Possibly Pontifette Meg

 

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