Last night, my parents had an unusually exciting Sunday evening. They were watching TV in separate rooms, my dad on the couch in the family room and my mom on floor in the living room (so that she can adjust the volume with her toe on the remoteless set that lives in there) when the lights in the house started to flicker. The electricity began making funny noises, like the power was being drained or diverted elsewhere. They ran outside and saw that the electrical box on the house next door was sparking. My mom dashed for the phone to call 911 and my dad stood there for a moment, not wanting to walk through the enormous puddle at the top of the driveway. Nothing like a lot of water to make you an electrocution risk.
After a moment, the sparks stopped and the electrical box caught on fire. He grabbed a towel that had been last used to wipe the dog’s muddy feet, and started hitting the fire, just like Pa Ingalls on Little House on the Prairie would have. He was able to put it out. Just after the fire was out, the fire truck came screaming down the street and the owners of the house came home from dinner.
Paul, the guy who owns the house, but currently lives down the street while he’s remodeling this one, said to my dad after the whole story had been told, “I guess we owe you a towel.”
My dad replied, “Don’t worry about it. I’ve been married long enough to know that you don’t use the good towels for something like this.”
I’m particularly pleased with his choice of towel, as it was from a set of seashell printed ones my mom bought when I was in high school. I’ve always hated them, and it’s nice to know that one of them was finally put to good use.