Communication is an important tool in most families. Though rarely perfected, peaceful coexistence depends upon one’s willingness to express and understand feelings, needs, or instructions. Imperfectly applied, communication might lead to undesired results such as the kitchen fire of July 12, 2009 which after some hastily issued orders concerning the bacon sizzling on the stove verbally thrown to one eldest Murphey as he sat distracted reading Foxtrot in the Sunday paper amid a cacophony of giggling, whirling ceiling fans, and roaring dinosaurs on HBO, my father left to fold clothes while said oldest child failing to hear the exchange left to play billiards with his little sister and thus abandoning the bacon to bubble and dissolve into greasy slime and thick smoke that even now coats much of the blankets and cushions on the first and second floors. Tragically the blame for this culinary holocaust fell on said eldest child, a responsibility he accepted begrudgingly as his protests fell on deaf ears – ironic as his own were the true culprits in this incident.
We did discover that the fire detectors require a battery change though. In the long run, my dereliction may have saved our lives. A thankable accident, if everyone can ignore the lingering stench of burnt ham soaked into the sofas and chairs long enough to consider it.