Good morning and welcome to Summit Up the world's only daily column that is officially giving up smoking, campfires, fireworks, fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, all other kinds of stoves, hot- air ballooning, candles, curling irons and that thing where you rub your chopsticks together to make sure there are no splinters because it's so flinging flanging dry out there we're scared our hair will catch on fire. And that whole scorched scalp look definitely would not work for us.
We, and the helmet-wearing dudes whose unfortunate job it is to make sure Summit County does not go up in smoke, encourage you to do some rain dances and carry around umbrellas over the next few days in the hopes of convincing Mother Nature to give us some rain. Or snow. Or sleet. Hell, we'll even take hail, we're not picky right now.
And to be slightly more accurate, the fire prevention peeps would actually prefer you do more practical things to prevent fires than carry around irrelevant umbrellas. They suggest:
Giving up smoking (the surgeon general is with them on this one.)
Not playing with matches.
Creating defensible space around your house.
Not leaving tanks of propane, gasoline or compressed hydrogen near your bonfires.
Not having bonfires.
Not being intoxicated anywhere near an open flame.
OK, we came up with that last one, but you can't deny it's good advice. The first person likely to be a victim of that mishap is you.
The point is, folks, that we live smack dab in the middle of 2 million acres of firewood that is dry as a bone. It's a really good time to be careful, unless we want to look like Yellowstone circa 1988.
OK, now that that Smokey Bear moment is out of the way, we officially release you to peruse the rest of the newspaper, finish your coffee and go about your day.