light bulbs and vents

My college roommate once told me that her parents were so poor in college that they could only afford one light bulb. They would move it from room to room, depending on where they needed light.

That was her story, and she stuck to it.

I had a few questions. Wouldn't the light bulb be too hot to move from fixture to fixture? Or, was there a five minute "cool down black out" when they changed locations? Did they always stay in the same room as each other so that they could be in the light?

Most importantly, what about the…uh… bathroom arrangements? Did they go to the bathroom together or did one of them go to the bathroom with the light out? Either way, weird. (I am aware that there is a third option of the user of the bathroom having the light and the other spouse being left out in the dark, but that is so much less inflammatory.)

I suggested that perhaps they could have purchased at least two light bulbs because that would have eliminated these problems.

My roommate was insistent. And who am I to judge another's thrift /made up story? (But, perhaps by insisting that the story is made up, I am being judgmental. )

Tyler and I were not quite that poor when we wedded. (Sometimes I like saying weird sounding things like we wedded. In fact, go ahead and attribute all of the odd phrasings, grammatical mistakes, and other nonsense that you encounter on my blog to my sense of whimsy.) We had light bulbs in every fixture. Of course, they came with the place, which is another problem with the story, but let's move on people.

We still wanted to save a buck where possible. Which led us to a nice little apartment on 900 East.

The rent was cheap. The landlady was the nicest we ever had. The place was clean. It had a cute little kitchen. It was fairly roomy. It even had its own washer and dryer.

There was just one thing.

In the living room there was a metal vent that was about five feet long and three feet wide. It was located in the middle of the floor.

"What? Don't you mean it was on the wall or the ceiling?"

I wish I did.

Not only was the vent on the floor, but it was crafted from heavy iron . It was made of a crisscrossing pattern that precluded one from falling into the depths of Hades. This was a definite plus.

However, the pattern also caused immense pain to walk on barefoot. It was like walking on a tight rope made out of a knife. This might sound like good clean fun, but there is a reason that tightropes are made out of… OK you got me, I have no idea what they are made out of, but I can tell you what they are not made out of, knives.

But, wait, there's more. Underneath the grate, there was a cave. In that cave, there was a hunk of rusted metal. It looked to be about the size of a small car. I shined a flashlight through the grate more than once to get a good look at the metallic heap, but could never really make it out.

I did figure out what it was in November, though. I would normally avoid the grate for the aforementioned reason. Once in a while, I didn't feel like taking the scenic route to the kitchen, so I would walk over it.

That morning I noticed something odd to go with the usual sensation of the kniferope. That being FIRE. You see, it turns out that the rusted car was actually a rusty heater. The person that had stuck the metal grate over a car sized heater had not realized that when you heat metal it gets, well, hot.

I am sure that one day my kids will have to deal with their own skeptical roommates.

 

BLUE LILY | Lifestyle Photographer | Salt Lake City, Utah