I remember the night all too well. It was an August evening and my parents left my younger brother Steve and I home alone as the rest of my family went to one of my younger sister, Aprils, softball games. They left the two of us together thinking that they could trust us since I was the older brother and that Im going to be a senior in high school. I guess that eventually proved to be quite the mistake.
As I recall it, Steve and I became bored after watching a few minutes of television. Our cable was disconnected the week earlier, and so the only channels we received werent too exciting for teenage boys. Out of desperation, Steve begged me to find something for us to do. I decided that since it was still pretty nice outside, we could go out and create a little fun of our own. And that is exactly what happened We grabbed the barbeque lighter and began circling our house and driveway looking for flammable objects. Since I was the one in charge, of course I was a little nervous, but I knew, or at least I hoped I knew, that Steve had an idea of what he was doing.
Paper, leaves, and an occasional cat got pretty monotonous, so I told Steve that we should just head back into the house. Now please take note that Steven thrives on attention, and albeit hes not the brightest crayon in the box, he loves to have people around to laugh and joke with as he attempts his insane adventures. So he suggested that we move onto bigger and better things, promising me that it would be well worth my time. I got a bit curious as to what he had planned, so I went along just for kicks. Besides, how bad could it really be?
Pleased that I was joining him, Steve grabbed a can of bug spray that was lying on our back deck. He also asked me to run into the garage and grab as many aerosol cans as I could find. All that I could gather was a can of Lysol, Raid and a half-empty can of wasp-repellent. I wasnt exactly feeling too good about this, but Steve assured me that because of scouts, he was a professional pyromaniac. I was as curious as ever by now, and so I was concentrating on his every move.
Holding the can out away from him, released the pungent mist of Raid. And as it came out, he burned it with the small flame of the lighter. Great balls of fire! I specifically remember saying: That was pretty dope. Little did I know, the good times had barely gotten rolling. This sparked my creativity, and I grabbed another can, sprayed a 2×4, and lit it next. Poof! The spray burned off in two seconds. From there, we went off spraying and burning everything in sight. It was the greatest thing ever. But like most everything else, it got old after a while and I realized that we should probably head into the house because it was beginning to be dark, and we didnt know what time Aprils game was supposed to end. But of course we couldnt just leave things at that, so we got psyched up for our grand finale.
Steve picked up a cardboard box and folded it shut. Then he got a pair of scissors and cut a small hole in the top. What the heck was he doing? One by one, I handed him each of the four aerosol cans. He soaked the inside of the box with everything those babies could pump out. Grinning, he said Hey Chris, wanna see a bomb? Before I could stop him, he stuck the nose of the lighter into the box, and clicked the igniterBOOM! Flames shot out about ten feet high past my brothers face! I gasped, and still remember seeing him for the first time after the flames receded. Singed, burnt, and scared, he asked me if he was dead. I couldnt help it, I burst into laughter. Oh my gosh! I told him to put his hands down, and when he did, he revealed the funniest thing that I have ever seen.
His eyelashes were melted off except for the little stubs that were in balls at the end of his eyes. His eyebrows were yellow, and shaped really weird. His hairline stood up on the edges and was also a yellow color. Scared to death, he ran into the house to see what he had done. Once he saw himself, he broke into tears. Probably because of a combination of the facts that he knew mom and dad were going to kill him once they got home, and that no matter what happened punishment-wise, he was still going to look awful for quite a long time. I tired to cheer him up by telling him that he didnt look that bad, but obviously I am a bad liar.
He grabbed some scissors, and stood in front of the bathroom mirror chopping away the stiff, yellow, melted clumps of crunchy hair. But there was no way he was going to get it all. I went into my room and started rolling around on the floor. This was hilarious! Steve found little humor in this, and as a matter of fact, he got really mad. He forced me to at least try to cut what hair he couldnt get by himself, and complained that whole time that it was my fault, cause I was the one in charge. We made a pact to not tell anyone about this (especially mom and dad), but inside I knew that it wouldnt take long for anyone to realize how horrible he truly looked. I mean, a weed-whacker would have done a much better job then butchering we gave to him.
Looking back now, the funny thing is that mom and dad never found anything out. Or at least they never said anything about it. I dont know how it was possible for Steve to not look them in the face for over two weeks, but somehow he managed. Now we can look back on this and its always good for a few laughs, but from that time on, weve sworn off being pyromaniacs because that was one of our few major mistakes.
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