Moss, is humor writer from Tennessee. She writes a
weekly human interest column about daily life and the funny
things that happen to everyone.
She has written for the Daily News of Kingsport, Griffin Journal,
Oakridge Now, Atlanta Woman Magazine, Aberdeen Examiner, Angleton
Advocate, and Smyrna AM, a supplement of the Murfreesboro Daily News
Journal. She has been
published by Voyageur Press, McGraw Hill, and the good folks
at Guidepost Books. Her articles have appeared in
numerous anthologies and other publications, both in print and online.
She is a
former board member and past Editor of the Columnists.com, website of the National Society of Newspaper
oldest and largest professional organization
for columnists. She is the Web Editor of
Humorists.com and a founder of the Southern Humorists writers'
organization. She is writer, editor, and webmaster of HumorColumnist.com.
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Online Since 1999
Wake Up and Smell the
you know when it's going to be a bad day? For starters, it might be a bad day if
you wake up to the sound of the smoke alarm going off at 5 AM in the morning
like I did the other day.
With the alarm screaming, I hit the floor and ran down the hall to see what was
going on. I couldn't see anything because in the excitement I forgot all about
putting on my glasses.
Yes, it was the smoke alarm. I didn't need glasses to confirm that.
I ran to the kitchen to see if I could find a source for the smoke, falling over
the dog like a keystone cop.
In the kitchen, I found that honey had put the pot from the coffeemaker on the
stove to warm up cold coffee. He forgot that it had a plastic handle. The pot
was black and the handle gone, burned into a pile of ashes.
The situation was under control by then -- if that sort of situation can be
"I just can't deal with this at this hour of the morning," I thought,
still wondering why I couldn't see.
Honey was fanning the smoke alarm to get it to shut up.
"Open the doors and get rid of the smoke," I yelled, as he tried to
take the smoke alarm apart to remove the battery.
I still couldn't see.
The cover was stuck on the alarm and we couldn't get it off. I took over the
fanning of the smoke alarm, which came back on at full blast every time I quit
"Turn off the furnace, it's pulling the smoke back through the house!"
"How do you turn it off?"
"Put it on O-F-F," I screamed.
The cat was terrorized by all the noise and bolted out the open door to escape
from the maniac people. We wouldn't see her again until hours later.
After the smoke finally cleared, and the alarm quit alarming, I found my glasses
and restarted my heart. There was no point in trying to go back to sleep, of
It was not until much later that I found out what really happened. Apparently,
there were actually flames shooting from the pot. Honey threw water on it --
water on an electric stove.
I can't stand it.
Somehow he miraculously managed to survive without getting electrocuted or
burning down the entire house.
I couldn't believe he actually had the nerve to pour me a cup of that burnt up
coffee to drink. I decided I could wait until I got to work for my coffee.
On the way home from work that night, honey mentioned that he needed to go buy a
new coffeepot, knowing he was in trouble.
"May I ask why you threw water on an electric stove?" I asked, almost
able to control my aggravation by then.
"What should I have done? Roast marshmallows?"
"Use baking soda! Smother it with flour! Use the fire extinguisher. Smother
it out with a towel. Google it on the net. Call information. Write your
Congressman. Anything but throwing water on an electrical fire!"
"Well, I turned off the stove first," he replied. "Besides, I
didn't know where the baking soda was." That's male logic.
I can't stand it.
There is a lesson to be learned from all of this. Probably you can figure it out
for yourself so I won't belabor the point. Actually, I always figured it would
be one of my own cooking disasters that would turn the kitchen into ground zero
-- not a pot of coffee.
If there is one good thing about all of this, at least we know the smoke alarm
If you see a fire engine parked in front of my house tomorrow morning, do not
panic. It is just my honey making coffee.
Copyright 2007 Sheila Moss
Nashville, TN 37219
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