Bitter Fire Drill!

When you went to college there, until 20 years later.

This weekend we were visiting my niece because she just had a baby. She went to the same college I went to 20 years ago, and I haven’t been back since 1995, the year I left. Everyone kept telling me how much it had changed, and I’ve always wanted to go back. Just like most everyone, college was my first taste of real freedom, and I made sure to make every bad decision before I finished.

When you find out that middle school to high school is 7 years.

My daughter asked me if college was better than high school. My wife and I both laughed so hard. I don’t know about most of you, but high school was a joke for me. I remember only a few things from it, and most of it was how bitter I was about so many things. It’s no accident that I loved Shawshank Redemption so much. And not because I was in jail. Actually, in high school, I was Andy Dufresne from Shawshank Redemption when he was in jail. Jailed for 4 years for a crime I didn’t commit.Β  College on the other hand, was when I finally escaped, washed all the poop off and looked up at the sky while the rain pored down on me. I basically was William Wallace right before he died, where he screamed, “Freeeeedddoooooooommmm!”, except I wasn’t getting my head chopped off, I was in college.

Going to college for the first time.

Anyway, my daughter asked me to rank schools from elementary to college. I started with the bottom. The absolute worst was junior high/middle school (so bad that no one could make up their mind what to call it), then high school, then elementary school and college 80 times better than the rest combined.

Also college.

One of the things people like about elementary school was the fire drills. Nothing better than a random drill that wakes you up from a boring math lesson that gets you out of school for a little bit. Then someone had to count you all, and you would do your best to mess up the count so it would take longer.

You know what fire drill sucks though? One in your own house. At 2:30 am. Last night at 2:30 am, just after I had fallen asleep, our fire alarm went off. In our new home of 3 months. Imagine the dread. My kids are upstairs and we haven’t even talked about what they would do if they were in a real one. Aggghhh, they are way high up and they would be trapped without a ladder. And our brand new home. We just barely got set up here. There are a few things that it would have solved though. New computer, new laptop. New phone (it would have tragically been trapped in the charger), and that 50 inch TV we had what have magically transformed into an 80 inch TV, and the Xbox S would have moved a few letters down the alphabet to and Xbox X.

Fortunately, it was just a drill. Unfortunately, we are stuck with our old electronics.

So, any fire scares for anyone out there?


Bitter Fire Drill at 2 am Ben

28 thoughts on “Bitter Fire Drill!

  1. Congrats on your new home and upgrades!!!! No fire scares just yet but the future is always bright in my home, lol you never know who’s gonna cause the next disaster around there. Also? High school was the worst. I don’t have those amazing memories other people seem to have and miss about those 4 years of incarceration. Also? I’ve seen Shawshank Redemption so many times it’s pathetic. The Green mile too. I’ve seen those 2 movies back to back to many times I’d be a pro at escaping prison or being on death row- either or lol. Have a bitter Monday!


  2. You had it easy.

    We had nuclear attack drills in elementary school, had to march silently into the hall, kneel with our faces against a concrete block wall with our hands behind our heads until the “all clear” announcement was given.

    It was an effective deterrent. The commie bombers passed us by every time and none of us got vaporized.


  3. Picture a crowded conference room where no one has a clue we’re supposed to evacuate the building because jets in afterburner are practicing touch and goes and drowning out the fire alarm. When the fire department breaks down the door and smoke billows in 25 people freeze like deer in headlights. Good times.


  4. That must have been one bitter night!!

    Last winter, I was at work one afternoon, when I got a call from the security guard, telling me there was a huge fire in the neighbourhood. I live just around the corner, so I went to look out of the window, and there was a humongous cloud of black smoke and flames rising just above where I live….

    I ran out of the office, barely putting my winter coat on… and ran home… I was conviced that my apartment was on fire. Fortunately (for me) the major fire was actually burning on the street next to mine… Just a “good” scare. But now I know exactly how you feel, the minute you realize you lost everything you own… Ugh.


  5. i’m glad you survived your “drill”! 22 years ago I was all Navy-trained for emergencies…and then 2 decades of lazy civilian-ness…. it took two fires – a wildfire nearby several years ago, and a little “smoker” in my son’s bedroom — at 2 AM – to realize that same bitterness… LOL


  6. At least it wasn’t like Dwight’s fire drill, where he barred the doors and turned all the doorknobs red hot. We had a smoke alarm that would go off any time it pleased whether or not there was smoke. That’s not too pleasant at 2:30 am. But the only new electronic this false alarmer generated was a new smoke alarm.


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