Yesterday was an eventful day at work. As I was leaving in the morning, I realized that I didn’t have anything to eat for lunch. I packed some food and pre-cut a potato, grabbed my potato bag, and headed out the door.
While at work I found some really old termination forms form like the 90’s. My job was to go through all of those forms and match them with cards from back then and make sure we had a card that matched the termination form. It took me all day. It made me very grateful for modern technology. It was a day of gratitude for me. Yay technology!
Around one o'clock I decided to cook my potato. My microwave at home usually cooks my potato’s for 4 minutes, but they usually aren’t cooked all the way through. To be safe, I put my potato in my potato bag and turned on the microwave for 6 minutes. I didn't go to a break room, I just cooked it in our office.
I walked back to my desk and worked for about 5 ½ minutes. I walked back up to the microwave, and I could smell burning. I wasn’t too excited about it. I opened the microwave and a steady stream of smoke was coming from inside. I panicked! The last time someone burned something in a microwave at work, the fire department was called and we all had to go outside. (Someone put a frozen roll in the microwave in the IT department, and it smelled pretty bad for a while.) I really didn’t want the fire department to be called because of me.
I didn’t know how hot the bag was, so I grabbed some paper towels and swiftly left the room hoping no one would notice. My first thought was to run outside, but there was no water out there. So I started heading toward the drinking fountain with my smoking potato bag in hand. When I got there I realized that I should go to the bathroom, but I was too far away, and I didn’t want the whole building to smell like smoke. There was an orientation for new employees and they kept walking in making mention of the smell. I put the bag under the drinking fountain and it sizzled, but wouldn’t stop smoking. So I did it again, knowing my lunch was getting drenched. Still, the smoking wouldn’t stop. I kept turning to the new employees coming in and smiling thinking, “Don’t mind me, I’m the crazy person that’s making the whole building smell like smoke, I’m having troubles working this drinking fountain because I’m in a panic, and I’m trying to be invisible, and trying to act totally normal and friendly all at the same time.”
I flip the inside over and there is a coal inside the bag that’s making it smoke. I finally put out the smoke, coal, and soon to be fire. I’m not really hungry at this point. I walk back into my office, and everyone is trying to figure out where the smell came from. They see me and the bag and I confess to what I’ve done. I’ve used a potato bag before, but something must have gotten stuck up in the top of it, or maybe there was some melted cheese or something in the microwave and I laid my bag on top of it.
I slink back to my desk and throw the bag on the floor. (After a few minutes I put it into a bag) Luckily the room smells kind of sweet and not like fire smoke. After about 5 minutes, two ladies come sniffing through the door. They say, “This is where that smell is coming from.” I shrink in my seat. My co-workers offer my potato bag up for inspection to show what happened. The ladies laugh and said that they thought someone was walking around the halls with incense, like in a Buddhist temple.
One lady tells us a story about her young son who ran into the bathroom while she was taking a shower many years ago to tell her that their microwave was on fire. She threw on a towel and ran out and sure enough there are flames coming out of the microwave. She opens it up and grabs the glass plate and throws it outside. What was on fire? Her new quad set of scriptures. She asked her son why he put her scriptures in the microwave and he said it’s because he’d never done it before. The other lady tells us that her kids flushed her shoes down the toilet. All of these great stories because I accidentally almost set my office on fire.
To try to cover up the smell I turned on my Scentsy. I had Tahitian Sunrise or something like that. A little while later one of my co-workers came into work and made mention of the smell. She said that it smelled like cooked marshmallows. She really liked the smell, and so did everyone else that came in after her. It was a one-time specially made smell.
I decided to eat my now slightly mushy potato. I put some butter on it and opened up my Sriracha sauce to put that on top. I guess the slight change in elevation from my house to work added some pressure to the bottle, and it popped open and got Sriracha sauce on the cupboard above me, my screen, the papers I was working on, the phone, my hand, and a few drops on sticky notes I had at my desk. It was kind of just a rough lunch period.
The whole situation reminded me of a talk that was just given in General Conference. Elder Dale G. Renlund gave a talk about repentance, and how he lit a firecracker right before church and there was smoke everywhere. Here is a link Repentance: A Joyful Choice.
The moral of the story is that potato bags are dangerous if not properly cared for and not watched in the microwave. I’m not sure what happened, or if I ever want to use the bag again, but it definitely made for an eventful afternoon.