Yes. Tonight, Emily and I jogged two miles. I know you were just dying to hear that information.
Or not.
But it's important. Because tonight, on our two-mile jog, we stopped at my grandma's house.
This is a ritual--we usually stop and catch the last few minutes of "Wheel Of Fortune" with her before heading on our way home.
But tonight, when we came through the door, the news was on.
The news!
"Why aren't you watching Wheel of Fortune?" I tried to ask, trying not to sound too devastated.
She looked at me blankly. "The coverage of the Southern California fires has been the only thing on all the stations since four o'clock this morning," she said.
Fires. What fires?
I quickly noticed that the TV screen was only two colors: orange and black.
Black because it's, uh, night.
Orange because there's fire.

Of course, I did the only logical thing to do in such a situation: I whipped out my cell phone and called Jay, breathless, to tell him about the fires ravaging the state.
He listened patiently, then said, "Yeah, I'm logged into the incident website and there are thirteen fires statewide. I'm on top of it."
Like I said before: oh.
I guess I was the only one in Southern California who didn't know about the fires.
Well, I take that back. Emily didn't know either.

My grandma mentioned that a homeless man, and his dog, had been killed by the fire. That led to a very involved conversation on how it would be possible for a homeless man to die in a fire (not to mention his dog. We'll get to that later.)
Think about it: it's not like the fire could overtake him in a house before he had a chance to escape.
He'd be in the middle of a street and would see the fire coming towards him.
Grandma had a suggestion: Maybe he was asleep under his blanket.
Well, Emily and I made quick work of that one; she suggested that he would smell it, and I suggested that he would think it was awfully hot for an October day.
Grandma countered: Maybe he was high on drugs and thought it was drug-induced psychedelic hallucination until it was too late.
That was plausible enough to give us a short pause.
That is, until we started thinking things through more carefully: what about the dog?
Wouldn't the dog run?
Emily said, "Maybe the homeless man was the arsonist, and he stayed around to watch the fire."
That still didn't answer the question of the dog.
"Maybe," she said, "the dog was on a LEASH."
"Or maybe," she said, "the dog had no legs."
Yes. You read that correctly.
My own blood sister had the audacity to suggest that the dog of a homeless man who died in a fire perhaps had no legs!

We all burst out laughing.
I know it's not supposed to be funny. But it was. What a visual.
We went home and related this story to our family;
Jay was a killjoy and made a comment like, "This family is morbid," and went back to his computer.
Dad said, in a perfectly normal voice, "Maybe it was a lapdog."

So. What do you think? What plausible explanations can you think of for why a homeless man on the street would perish (with his dog) in a fire?
And, no, you may not consult any legitimate media sources for the answer to this question.
Use your imagination.

And, while you're at it, please pray for the fires. Apparently, it is a very, very serious situation.
Not that I would know about that -- I just found out about the fires.
But still.
I have a somewhat informed brother. Which helps.


Jay said...

I'm thinkin' sodom and gamora situation... the dog looked back. The homeless guy promised to never leave the pooch. Now there's a salt-lick in the Angeles National Forest.

Gymfan15 said...

How about this; and yes, I thought it up all by myself, and in two seconds, too. ;)

The homeless man, despite his rough manners and gruff appearance, is actually a kind man with a gentle heart; left to his destitute condition by reverses in fortune. His beloved canine companion, also kind-hearted, went into a ramshackled building (such as are generally found in neighborhoods populated by homeless folk) to rescue a poor, helpless kitten from the approaching flames, when the brave dog is trapped by some falling timber of some sort and cries for help. The homeless man, unable to leave his beloved companion to it's morbid fate, goes into the building to rescue him. Unable to see the approaching flames, he tarries, until he too is also trapped by the collapsing structure, and there they both die a brave and heroic death.

How's that working out for ya?

Taylor said...

Most of the homeless people around where I live are extremely attached to their pets.... Maybe the guy's dog ran in a building for some reason, and the owner loved his dog so much that he tried to stop him...

Just a thought

Taylor said...

Sorry, I didn't mean to say stop him, I meant to say that he might have gone after him

Daniel said...

Pardon my cynicism, but I would say the homeless guy was passed out drunk, and the dog was trying to save him. Guess I have more faith in dog's loyalty to man . . .

LaReina said...

Ok. . .First off, I didn't know you had a blog. Wow, where will I find Nicole Hearn next?

So, my theory, maybe boring, but logical(that is my biased opinion) is that the homeless man was living some where in the foothills in his tent. Being that fires tend to go uphill, he was chased into a canyon or ravine of some sort. Maybe he couldn’t outrun the fire horizontally. He attempted to go up the hill and was overtaken by the flames. The dog being in the same position couldn’t outrun the fires either. This is sad though. Some man died all alone.

cliftonofhesperia said...

Or perhaps, as is the case, the heat simply got to him. Remember, a real fire you can feel the heat a mile away, and this wasn't any camp fire.

Odds are that the poor man couldn't get away in time when the fire caught up to him, wherever he was.