Summertime means fire time in the Capital Region. We will make campfires and backyard fires because sitting around the fire with friends and family is fun. I don’t completely understand why we have more outdoor fires during the Summer then the Winter in the Capital Region but I am not complaining because I like fire.

When I was a kid, I was the one who was not allowed to be unsupervised near a fire because I tried to throw anything I could find into the fire. Somethings never change, I still like to throw things into the fire and to I have found that I am not alone. Through my experience, I have learned what you should not throw into the fire.

Paper with colored images

Looks pretty when it burns but it smells funny. A friend told me that something in the ink is toxic and that it should not be burned but we burned a bunch anyway. Then I got a really bad headache.


Like 20 Amazon boxes at once, or the box a refrigerator comes in that you make stand upright in the fire pit. They always go up too fast and make you think that you’re done but by the time the boxes are done burning all you’re left with is that burned box smell.

Action Figures

Same as the paper. Looks pretty smells funny, probably toxic.

Aluminum Pie Trays

Because after your Grandmother will yell at you even though you didn’t know she reuses them.

Very Small Rocks or Pebbles

If you do it right they will pop and in some cases shoot out of the fire.


It goes up really, really fast. Faster then you would think. Just use lighter fluid instead.

A Bottle of Lighter Fluid

I am not talking about emptying a bottle of lighter fluid into a fire, I am talking about just throwing the bottle into the fire. You think that it would be a good idea but it’s not, sometimes it makes a big fireball but nothing really catches on fire and you end up having to use a second bottle of lighter fluid.

Video Game Console

Because people get all bent out of shape when you tell them that you did it for fun, even though the damn thing was broken.


It does not really put out the fire, it just makes everything smell like vomit.

Inflatable Balls

They make way to much noise when the air leaves them and then the party poopers that don’t want you burning everything come out and yell at you.


Unless you’re cooking it and it accidentally falls into the fire, sometimes it’s fun to throw a potato chip or some kind of snack food into the fire but you should not waste food.


You should not throw clothes into the fire for the same reason that you should not throw food into the fire, it would be a waste.

If you do throw clothes into the fire don’t try to take them out of the fire, like the time my friend through his Starbucks apron into the fire and then pulled it out with a stick and began waving it around declaring his liberation from corporations. The flaming apron wall off of the stick and almost hit my other friend who was just sitting there minding his own business, trying to turn his mouth blue with marshmallows and blueberry soda.

Motor Oil

It doesn’t help the fire get going any faster at first, I don’t know how this one turned out because I left the party, but I am sure that it’s not good for the environment or something.


It’s not very exciting and the puns about burning CDs get old after five minutes.

Old Doors

They go up in flames way too fast and the reality of how flammable the doors in your home really are takes away from how cool the big flames look. Sometimes the doorknob doesn't burn at all and it can get hotter then your fireplace and burn it’s way through it…. that was a fun night.


I recommend wearing steel-toed boots and just walking through the fire at a brisk pace…. actually don’t try this at all.

That is about it. The moral of this blog is don’t be an irresponsible Firebug. You can not burn everything and anything that you want because you may regret it or set a bad example for your kids. However, if you’re like me and my friends and you can’t resist, always know where the garden hoe is and don’t throw that in the fire too…. unless it’s old and you already have a new one. 

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