Secret Pop

Oct 19, 2005

Sometimes headaches aren't hangovers.

I put out a fire in my kitchen yesterday with a fire extinguisher. Such excitement. It started like this.

I wanted to scan some photos. And my scanner bed seemed a bit dusty and smudgy, so I went looking for my Windex, and in the process discovered that a bottle of Clorox in my utility closet was leaking. I had to clean that mess up and dispose of all of the bottles of cleansing products that had been corroded. And that got me on a clean-everything-up kick. So I was in the kitchen washing dishes, and I heard a loud bang and turned around to find that there were flames shooting out from under my stove. I cursed for a bit, and then realized there was no point in talking about it. I needed to put it out. I have a fire extinguisher that my landlord provided when I first moved in. But it's in a cardboard box, and when I went and opened that box, I realized I had to screw on the hose and release the valve lock, and all the while, my stove was on fire. With one little squirt from the fire extinguisher, the fire was out. But I had to put on a surgical mask to clean up the mess. The fumes and particulates in the air were acrid and sour.

I cleaned everything up and went to wash my hands. The bottle of antibacterial hand wash I squeezed cracked in half right in my hands and squirted all over the coffee maker and the counter. It's old. I had it when I moved here. The plastic is brittle. So that was another mess for me to clean up.

I had to do that script reading for Bryn, and when I came home, I could smell the funk of the fire and what smelled like gas, but I wasn't sure if that's what it was. I -- brilliantly -- went into the kitchen and lit things to see if there was a gas leak. I'm a genius.

This morning, when I woke up, the gas smell was very pronounced. So I called the gas company and had a technician come out. I guess the fire extinguisher had put out a couple of the pilots, and they were just leaking gas all night. He fixed everything up and put my mind at ease. And now at least I have an explanation for why I have such a lousy headache and sore, red eyes.

It's been cold and rainy these past few days. It reminds me of this time last year. It's hard to believe it's been a year. Hard to believe I've had Audrey this long. That I've begun jobs and ended them. That I've changed my hair so many times. That I've gotten a different car, another computer, another camera. I just feel like it all happens so fast, and I pay so little attention to any of it. And yet, look at me -- I pay more attention than anyone. What must it be like for other people? Do they even know it's 2005? And that it's almost over? What's the point anyway. I guess I could have been blown up last night. There was enough gas to be concerned. And then there would just be the shards of all these unfinished projects and all these unfleshed-out ideas. All these unscanned photographs.

Well, that's something I can correct.

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