April 10, 2008

A New Elephant

Whew! We just had a minor scare. Alec decided to brave the thunder and lightning after school today and walk to a nearby lake to look for snakes, or turtles or whatever else is out there that might be stinky or slimy. Boys. ( He came home thrilled because he'd found a crawdad claw. Boys.)
Anyway-while he was gone Barrett and I were here alone at the house. I was in the kitchen making some quiche for dinner and the oven was preheating. I heard a funny noise and turned to see a fire in the oven! I grabbed the baking soda and kept dumping more and more on the fire but to no avail. (Don't you love how you can use words in your posts, like "avail", that you wouldn't use in an actual conversation?)
I noticed that it was actually just the heating element that was on fire and it was starting to throw sparks. I called my husband on the phone and he told me to try the breaker switch. So, I went out to the garage and tried throwing all the breakers. I couldn't find the one that connects to the oven. Figures. I was a little nervous by now because the fire was working its way along the element and I had no idea what it would do when it go to the end; however, I knew I was being watched by Barrett and I didn't want him to see me panic. No matter. By the time I came back into the house he was running around sobbing. "Our house is going to burn down. I don't want our house to burn down!" I couldn't comfort him because I was trying to keep the house from burning down.
My husband had told me my other option was to unplug the oven. Do you know where the plug is?! Near the floor behind the oven. Whoever designed this house obviously hadn't had the foresight to see that oven elements might catch on fire and the oven just may need to be unplugged by a wimpy woman. Nope-they had to put the outlet waaaaayyy down near the floor so the whole, hot, sparky oven has to be moved in order to keep the house from burning down.
I finally jerked and walked the thing far enough away from the wall so that it could be unplugged and, voila. The sparks started stopping and the fire stopped starting.
Then it was time to comfort The Bear. We cuddled and talked for a bit. I explained that we wouldn't need to buy a whole new oven, just a new heating element, and then I asked him if he'd like a shower. (He'd followed me out to the breaker box, sobbing, in his bare feet and our garage floor is nothing if it's not dirty.)
While he was in the shower Alec came home. I told him he's never allowed to leave me again and then told him why. I also mentioned that his little brother had been quite upset and nearly hysterical about our oven fire.
Alec went over to the bathroom door and asked, "Barrett, are you OK now?"
"Yes, but there was a fire in the oven and now we'll have to get a new elephant!"


  1. I'm sorry this happened to you. But Barrett is so adorable! I just love when they misinterpret things. This rates right up there with James' tiny Jesus story. :-)

  2. A new elephant! That is one of the funniest things I've ever heard. Judy, you are such a great writer. I loved your subtle humor through this whole thing...especially when you said you couldn't comfort Barrett about the house burning down because you trying to keep the house from burning down.

  3. Our ice maker is broken. I wonder if an elephant could help with that.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.