When Romance is a Fire Hazard

One of the selling features of our condo was the fact that it had a fireplace, a REAL fireplace. There wasn’t a switch to turn on flames amidst charred-looking fake logs, no, this was an old fashioned fireplace. Thursday night, being the night before Howie’s birthday, a particularly chilly November evening, seemed like the opportune time to start a romantic fire to heat things up (no pun intended).

Cheryl: Howie don’t you want to help me make this fire?

Howie: Babe you know I don’t know how to do that. You’re the one who went camping as a kid.

Cheryl: Yah but don’t you think you should learn? I mean, when we have kids and they need to learn how to make fire who’s going to teach them?

Howie: I don’t think our kids will need to make fires that often. We have a stove.

Cheryl: I realize that but when we go camping and they need to learn how to build a fire that’s the dad thing to teach them!

Howie: I thought we didn’t have gender roles in our relationship. Hmmm?

(He had me there).

So I grabbed some cardboard, bits of wood and a few logs and built a pretty good fire within a few minutes (not to brag). Just as the room temperature was starting to feel comfortable we noticed it was getting harder to breath.

Cheryl: Why is it getting so smokey in here? I opened the fireplace’s flue!

Howie: What? Flue?

Cheryl: It’s the thingy that opens to let the smoke out!

Howie: Let me take a look

Cheryl: Don’t touch it! The whole thing is heating up. Here, use this towel on your hands!

Howie: Hmmm… The handle is in the ‘open’ spot, it should be going up.

Cheryl: It’s getting bad in here! Look at my eyes!

Howie: Geez! (Cough cough) look at all the smoke! It’s everywhere!

Cheryl: I’ll open the sliding doors, you open the windows!

(Monica starts to whimper)

Cheryl: Oh no! I think the smoke is getting really bad for Monica.

Monica: I can’t breathe!

Cheryl: Howie can you take her outside?! I’ll put out the fire and get the smoke out of here.

Howie: Are you going to be ok?

Cheryl: Yah I’ll be fine!

I opened the sliding door all the way (which totally defeated the goal of making the condo warmer) and started waving a giant towel to get as much of the smoke out. I have to tell you, it was bad. I was a tad bit scared for a minute. The condo looked completely opaque for a while but slowly, gradually, it started to thin out and breathing became less of a chore.

A few moments before Howie came back I had just finished putting the last splash of water on the fire and stood up. What a bad decision it was to put a giant mirror over the fireplace, I was not looking pretty. Mascara running down my face, bloodshot eyes, soot in my face and my hair looking like a squirrel’s nest. Next to my Catherine Humphrey costume, I don’t think I’ve ever looked less attractive.

This was so NOT how I pictured our romantic evening by a fire.

On the plus side, neither of us felt like cooking after that so we ordered Chinese.

Happy birthday Howie!


5 thoughts on “When Romance is a Fire Hazard

  1. Ahha I love that you’re mom comments on your blog post out of concern! Glad you are all safe, including poor Monica. Maybe the romance needs to be warmed up via Gas fireplace after all.

    xo L.

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