Smoke, mirrors, and fire

I mentioned those in my last post, didn’t I?

Thene linked it all together for me, however, when she mentioned something a client had said:
“Some people try to get things right by bean counting, whereas others are all about calibrating risk, eg (in this instance) looking out for the things that were most likely to catch fire and making sure they didn’t catch fire, screw the beans. Made me think of me & M, not least in that he ALWAYS knew that X was going to catch fire. Literally always.”
I noted that M seems to note all the fires, but doesn’t try to fight any of them.
Thene: “Oh, yes, in many cases he notes the forthcoming fire & just fireproofs his own boundaries. esp with me, he can’t force people into making the fire not happen.”

My dorm had a required fire safety class yesterday. I was tired and I was skeptical, but in the end I found out some very valuable lessons that can be extrapolated.

The fire person:
“If the flames are licking the roof and spreading sideways – GTFO. Or death. Don’t even bother, just go. However, if the flames are less than ceiling height and going straight up, get your courage and faith together, be a hero, and put out that fire. Be confident and you will prevail.”


“The reason why fire extinguishers are designed to only have about 10 minutes of power is because if you can’t put out a fire within that time frame, the house is going up anyway, so to have it last longer would only kill your chances of survival because you’ll stand there trying to put out the fire instead of fleeing when the fire has already circled round to block off your exit.”


“If you’re in your room and you know there’s a fire somewhere, but you don’t know where for sure, stay inside your room. If you open the door, you are likely to introduce a backdraft, also known as providing a burst of energy to a previously oxygen depleted environment. In most cases, this will result in instant crispy death of the person opening the door. So stay inside your room, open a window, and signal for help. Don’t just stand there, thinking people will know you need help. Nope. When there’s fire, there’s too much going on and way too much smoke. If you want to be saved, you need to signal for help.”


“When fighting a fire, keep your distance or you might end up singed. Fire extinguishers can work up to 5 meters away, so there’s no need to get up close and personal.”


“Do not panic if you know there’s a fire alarm going on somewhere in the building but the alarms in your room aren’t signaling evacuation. The floors most immediately at danger will signal for evacuation first. Stay in your room to avoid overcrowding and possible death by stampede.”


“Do not wander around in case of fire. Smoke rises at the rate of one story every second. You cannot outrun it. If you are more than 30 meters from an easy exit, stay in your room lest you die of smoke inhalation rather than actual fire.”


All fire safety shit, right?
But nooo, we can extrapolate!

If someone’s drama/issue is straightforward and appears solvable (aka, not descending into ceiling-licking crazy), then by all means, be a hero, be confident, and put out that fire.

If you cannot solve someone’s drama within a certain time frame, GTFO because you cannot save them/it and you should preserve your own life.

If you’re not sure of what’s going on, stay barricaded within your boundaries and do not introduce more fuel to the mess.

If there’s drama and you need evacuation, signal for help if you want to live. No one will know you are there or that you want help if you don’t let them know. No one will know that you don’t want any part of it if you don’t speak up.

Keep your distance from drama. Don’t get pulled in. If you can put out the fire safely, do so, but otherwise, keep yourself from being burned!

If the drama isn’t spilling over onto you, please don’t go looking for it or add unnecessary panic to the mess. Stay calm, stay detached, and it will be fine.

Above all, don’t try to outrun the smoke. Barricade, barricade, barricade. Smoke kills more and faster than fire, in this case, meaning that drama explosion spill over ruins more shit than the original actual problem does.

Also, in a small contained space like a bus with lack of outside ventilation, lots of flammable shit, and people crammed together? You have like 30 seconds before everything goes up in fire fire fire. So really, gauge your environment, and if you’re in the equivalent of a bus (small incestuous screwed up group of people who feed off each other’s drama and think forgiveness is a myth), just GTFO. Unless you have super speed, which you don’t because you aren’t Superman or the Flash or whatever, you will be knocked out and crispy faster than you believe possible.

He also mentioned a couple of cases where people just wanted to burn some brush or dead leaves and ended up causing huge amounts of damage they were then responsible for. *nudge nudge*

Be safe, kiddies, and don’t play with matches. Or explosives. If you must, however, do it with permission and intelligently.

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