The sun had already set, and and the last ray of light was just vanishing over the horizon as I pulled into the driveway with Fordie Focus. I was pretty tired after doing 3 hours of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and I was looking forward to grabbing some quick protein and going to bed. As I got out of my car, I smelled smoke in the air, and was surprised to find that the front door was hanging wide open. The smell got stronger as I stepped over the threshold and greeted Laura.
“Hi Laura, what’s going on?” I asked as I dropped my gym bag on the floor.
“You missed all the excitement!” she replied, not smiling and visibly agitated. “The police and two fire trucks just left.”
I was already starting to guess who the culprits were. You see, we weren’t all equally well-behaved. There were four of us in the house at the time. The working folks were myself and Laura the Lifter (#40); there was a student, Nancy the Nudist (#38), and then there was Downbeat Debbie (#39). She was neither a student nor a worker. She just kinda drank all the time, and spontaneously brought home random new pets that I was allergic to. Impulse control was not her forté.
As Nancy and Debbie got to know each other, they started partying together, and the house got more and more… exciting. If you don’t already know about their naked adventures, you should really drop everything and read about them here.
“So what happened this time?” I asked Laura. This is the story she told me.
Nancy and Debbie had been drinking together when they got the bright idea they should do some baking. Even sober, Nancy always made quite a mess of the kitchen, but having staggered up the stairs this time, any onlooker would have seen that this was not going to end well.
The ingredients were laid out across the stove top and the counter while the oven was being pre-heated. The two girls staggered around, preparing their food, when one of them knocked over a bottle of oil. As the oil ran out, it poured down the back burner and into the oven, where it made contact with the element, and the whole range burst into flames. The girls screamed and stumbled out the door. As Laura came out of her room to see what the commotion was about, she saw flames licking the cupboards. Like any reasonable person, she got the hell outta Dodge.
As Laura finished up her story, our phones vibrated, and a message from the landlord told us the replacement parts for the stove were on back order and it would be a week or two before we could cook again. I was cheesed, but still pleased that our entire home had not gone up in flames.
After a little commiserating, Laura and I went our separate ways- she went to bed, and I grabbed a protein bar, and followed suit.
The next morning, as I was getting in my car, the next door neighbour walked over to me and said, “Is this your car?”
“Yep!”, I replied.
“The cops told me they were looking for the owner of the red car.”
“OK, thanks for letting me know.” I was on my way to work in the E.R., and I wasn’t about to make time to call the police department and say, “Hey, um, looking for me?” Nancy had a red car, and mine was clearly maroon, so I took off for work and hoped for the best.
Fast Forward, one month later.
I walked in the door after a weekend away and found Nancy in the kitchen. “I just spent the weekend in jail!” I started, hoping to get a response out of her. She raised her eyebrows. “Actually, I stayed at the jail hostel in Ottawa and had a really good time.” Nancy was unusually quiet for a moment, with a serious look on her face. But a crooked smile appeared once she decided to spill the beans.
“I spent a weekend in jail not too long ago!” She began. A few days after the incident in the kitchen, she had found herself behind bars. “It was awesome!” she said. “I just worked out all weekend, doing body weight exercises. Everyone just left me alone”.
I’m sure they did leave her alone! Nancy was ripped (thought not as ripped as Laura), and even the nastiest jailbird in a woman’s jail would probably rather avoid a fight with this one.
I never asked what the actual charges were. I didn’t need to know. All I needed was to believe that the house was not going to light up on fire again, and I was pretty sure Nancy had learned her lesson.
Downbeat Debbie didn’t seem like the learning type, so I didn’t feel I could trust her at all, but since Nancy was the leader of that pack, I hoped things would be a little calmer at Birchwood House from then on.