Monday: Happy Incendiary Device Day!

I can’t decide which is more crazy-stupid: the explosive incident in New York which removed a teenager’s foot, or the folks who immediately worried there’d been a terrorist attack.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the end of stupid-with-explosives this week. There will be many more trips to emergency rooms across the country today, inflating our health care costs simply because stupid.

A family member working in an ER one July 4th evening about fifteen years ago told me a story about a particular patient who arrived under his family’s care at the hospital. The patient was able to talk about his accident during triage; he explained while setting off fireworks in the backyard during his family’s picnic, the rocket he’d lit exploded and impaled him through the eye. Within a couple hours after admittance he was dead. Sadly, this kind of accident happens every year.

Leave this stuff to the experts. You need all your digits and body parts. Attend a community-organized program with paid professionals handling the fireworks. Enjoy the holiday relaxing with your friends and loved ones.

If you have to burn something, stick to grilling meats and vegetables over open flames. Still risky but much less likely to cost you life or limb.

Me? I’ll be making beef teriyaki kabobs and chicken shashlik skewers before the community fireworks program. Flame on!

Blogger since 2002, political activist since 2003, geek since birth. Opinions informed by mixed-race, multi-ethnic, cis-female condition, further shaped by kind friends of all persuasions. Sci-tech frenemy, wannabe artist, decent cook, determined author, successful troublemaker. Mother of invention and two excessively smart-assed young adult kids. Attended School of Hard Knocks; Rather Unfortunate Smallish Private Business School in Midwest; Affordable Mid-State Community College w/evening classes. Self-employed at Tiny Consulting Business; previously at Large-ish Chemical Company with HQ in Midwest in multiple marginalizing corporate drone roles, and at Rather Big IT Service Provider as a project manager, preceded by a motley assortment of gigs before the gig economy was a thing. Blogging experience includes a personal blog at the original blogs.salon.com, managing editor for a state-based news site, and a stint at Firedoglake before landing here at emptywheel as technology’s less-virginal-but-still-accursed Cassandra.
7 replies
  1. P J Evans says:

    In my neighborhood they start setting them off around 10pm, and run for a couple of hours. (Like we really need to be up until o-dark-hundred.) I’m always surprised that there aren’t more injuries, deaths, and fires.

  2. Peterr says:

    Got the homemade ice cream churning away, and bison/beef burgers waiting for the grill. Good local beer is chilled, and we’re about ready for the annual viewing of “1776”.
    .
    We’re also grateful that we had 5 inches of rain over the last three days, to saturate the ground before the incendiary devices start flying. Last year, after three+ weeks of no rain and temps in the 90s, the neighbors fired off a helluva lot of stuff, a decent chunk of which landed in our lawn. At 1am, I was about ready to turn on our sprinklers to cool the party off, but just at that point they ran out of ammo and it tapered off pretty quick after that.
    .
    I’m not generally a “get offa my lawn” kind of guy, but years ago I spent a couple of summer nights putting out brush fires in the woods after idiots start playing with fire like this. I have very little tolerance for idiots whose idea of fun puts my house and family in danger.

  3. scribe says:

    There’s a lot I do that some people might call “hazardous”, but one thing I don’t do is mess with fireworks. It’s dimwits like this, http://bangordailynews.com/2012/07/02/news/augusta/sabattus-man-suffers-fireworks-injury/ one of my favorite all-time firework mishap stories:

    Jason Douglass, 34, was setting off fireworks Saturday night on the front lawn of a relative’s house on Lancaster Road in Richmond, according to Grimes. He lit off a cake of fireworks, which has multiple tubes in the same package.

    After the cake had fired, Douglass was dousing it with water when he noticed that several of the tubes didn’t go off, said Grimes. He then attempted to dry out the unused portion with a torch when one of the tubes went off unexpectedly.

    “One went off before he expected it and it hit him in the head, right about the right eye,” said Grimes. “He had quite a large laceration to his forehead as well as a possible eye injury.”

    I recall there was one of those “thank you” letters to the editors from that nitwit’s family a few days later, praising the work of the doctors and hospital and telling the world that, happily, because of their fine work he’d be keeping the eye.

  4. scribe says:

    Consider: the headline on page one of yesterday’s New York Post, concerning the teenager and Central Park explosion was “Land Mine”.

    Talk about giving people bad ideas.

  5. lefty665 says:

    Seems like good Darwin awards material.
    .
    On the contrarian side, isn’t beef really just a slow motion version of self inflicted fireworks injury on a planet with 7+ billion people? And, have we become such a risk averse society that we eschew celebration of our revolutionary birth?
    .
    Happy Independence Day. We annually take the opportunity to reflect on our first documents and the people who risked all to bequeath us freedom. May we preserve it for our offspring. Thanks to all here.

  6. P J Evans says:

    Summary of incendiaries: Next-door parking lot, about every 15 minutes from 8pm to 10:30pm. Other, farther away, until midnight.
    Could have been worse – the idjits next door didn’t have any cherry bombs yesterday.

Comments are closed.