Honey, I Blew Up The Kitchen

For once, it's not my fault I haven't updated in a week. Aside from our on-and-off electricity, my Internet connection has been S  L  O  W and spotty; I could barely connect at all over the weekend. And yesterday we were without power unexpectedly due to the snowstorm that appeared out of nowhere to crush our illusions of springtime having arrived, since on Sunday some people were actually out in short sleeves!

And, for once, my failure to update was not because I had nothing to say: I blew up our kitchen on Saturday. That should make for an interesting story, don't you think?


For the purpose of full disclosure, I regretfully admit that this is actually the second time I've done this. The first was 5 or 6 years ago, in our old apartment, and was caused by unbelievable stupidity on my part. This time I can simply chalk it up to the early onset of senile dementia (or, if we're feeling charitable today, we can call it "distraction". Please do not refer to it as "ditziness", I've already heard that enough from my husband).
You see, our stove has this smoked glass cover that pulls down over the burners; I like to keep it closed because it makes the kitchen look neater (one of my odd little manias of domesticity). Although, since Dario likes to use the lid as an extension of the dish drainer, it doesn't usually look as neat as I would like.
So Saturday I decided to make some lunch, and I sautÚd some veggies in a saucepan to add to my microwaved rice. Meanwhile, I was still working on my presentation for the Hannover thing, so I kept running back and forth to the kitchen to check on things in between bouts of writing. Since the electricians were obviously not working over the weekend, I had to take advantage of a full two days with no downtime.
When the microwave buzzer went off, I rushed into the kitchen, grabbed the saucepan off the stove, dumped the veggies into the rice, stirred it all up and took the dish back to my desk so I could eat and work at the same time.
Oh, and did I mention that I closed the stove lid, out of sheer habit?

Not long afterwards (15 minutes?) I got up to put my dish in the sink (I told you I've been trying to be good!), and Dario was walking towards the kitchen from the bedroom. All of a sudden--BOOM!
I was still in the office, and couldn't see, but Dario had witnessed the whole scene. Nonetheless, it took him a few seconds to figure out what had happened. We stumbled into the kitchen in shock, trying to absorb the disaster scene. Glass was everywhere, in big chunks and dangerous, tiny slivers. It looked like a science class experiment gone horribly wrong.
You know how you sometimes focus on weird details? I kept staring at this brown metal bar lying on the floor, and I couldn't figure out what it was. It was the metal strip that holds (held) the lid to the hinge at the back. I picked it up; it weighed about 5 pounds. It had traveled about 4 feet.
That was some explosion!

I'm sure the explanation is obvious, but in case you're slow or haven't been paying attention, here it is: I had forgotten to turn the burner off, and the heat had eventually caused the lid to disintegrate dramatically.
Like I said, I was distracted.

This is much better than the previous incident, when I had once again left the burner on and closed the lid, but somehow noticed it before it blew up. I turned off the flame, but was worried that one of us might touch the hot cover and suffer a serious burn, or that Vicki might walk across it and injure her delicate paws.
My bright idea was to spray water on it from the bottle I use for ironing (when I actually iron, that is). The results were similar to Saturday's explosion, but somewhat less dramatic. Probably because the flame was shut off, and the lid blew up because of the sudden contraction from the cold water, rather from the expansion caused by a hot flame.

This time around, I got a stern lecture from Dario about being more careful. "What if we'd been standing right there?" he asked. "What if Vicki had been in the kitchen? She'd be full of glass!"
I know he's right, and I feel terrible about it, but I really can't imagine how I can promise it'll never happen again. I mean, I'm just a distracted kind of gal, you know?
And I still think I should get some credit for not repeating the water bottle trick!


In an attempt to salvage the shredded remains of my reputation, I might mention that yesterday's meeting with the client for the Hannover show went very well. They were extremely receptive to my suggestions and ideas, even the ones I had included without really believing they would go for them. Yay!
Now they have to mull on the whole proposal for a few days, and decide how much they want to budget for communications at this show. Then, we're off!
I just hope they don't wait too long to make a decision, since time is already short, and there's a lot to do. Of course, if they end up not following many of my suggestions, there may not be all that much to do.

It was interesting how this meeting went so much better than the last one. I wonder whether it's because I wasn't as nervous, or because this time I had some clear ideas to discuss, or because the client has come to feel more comfortable with us and is less diffident, or a combination of all three? The main factor, probably, is that this time we were discussing specifics, which are more focused and perhaps make it easier to have a solid grip on the concepts involved. The last meeting was a general "concept" meeting, but since this is a new client we hadn't yet established much in the way of rapport, and so what could have been a good brainstorming session was instead rather uncomfortable. Brainstorming is only really useful when you don't feel that you are being judged based on the ideas you present.

Luckily, my clients don't know anything about my kitchen.