You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.


  • ePAPER

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.


Welcome to

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

New stove is a recipe for disaster

Operating under the delusion that better tools will somehow make us better cooks and probably lead to our own show on the Food Network, my wife and I bought a professional-looking new stove with gas burners last week.

As any serious cook will tell you, a stove with gas burners has a number of advantages over a stove with electric burners. The most important advantage is that people who come to your house for dinner will be impressed when they see that you have a stove with gas burners, even if you serve them microwaved hot dogs.

The morning after our new stove is installed, I decide to inaugurate it with a breakfast of pancakes and sausage. I don’t actually like pancakes but, in addition to its four circular burners, the stove top has a rectangular griddle and it seems a shame not to use that for something.

I put the sausage links in a pan, cover the pan with an over-sized splatter screen and turn on the burner. Flames curl up around the pan, just like on those cooking shows we watch.

While the sausage links are browning, I mix the pancake batter. As I’m mixing the pancake batter, the curling flames reach the splatter screen, which starts smoking. I grab the splatter screen and toss it into the sink. If that ever happens again, I’d probably use a pot holder.

With the hand that isn’t starting to blister, I begin to ladle pancake batter onto the griddle. The ladling is interrupted by my wife inquiring, “Why is the griddle making a ticking noise?

“I have no idea.”

“Maybe we should read the instruction booklet.”

Taking time to read a booklet while something connected to a gas line ticks is not my first instinct. My first instinct is to run.

Besides, there is no instruction booklet. When I bought my electric toothbrush it came with a 24-page booklet — in three languages. But no instructions at all came with a device capable of blowing up my entire neighborhood.

I turn off the burner under the griddle.

A few seconds later, a second flame begins to curl around the sausage pan. This one is coming from the plastic end of the metal tongs that I have set on top of the stove next to the pan. By this time, the browning sausage is blackening, but I can’t remove them with the tongs because the tongs are on fire. So now I have a ticking griddle, burning sausage, flaming tongs and a blistering palm.

That evening we have microwaved hot dogs for dinner.

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in

7 tips for poison prevention
7 tips for poison prevention

Whether you have a baby, toddler or school-age child, your home should be a haven where your little one can explore safely. After all, touching, holding, climbing, and exploring are the activities that develop your child’s body and mind. However, according to a Safe Kids Worldwide, every minute of every day, a poison control center answers a...
Premature ‘Baby Bun’ is thriving, marks milestone with parents
Premature ‘Baby Bun’ is thriving, marks milestone with parents

  It may be something that every child accomplishes, but it means even more to the parents of Kaleb Graves, also known as Baby Bun. Arkell and Dana Graves of Virginia posted video of Kaleb sitting up on his own for 1 minute and 48 seconds on Facebook. Kaleb was an internet sensation even before he was born when his father’s reaction to his...
D.L. Stewart: Sometimes you gotta’ root for Goliath
D.L. Stewart: Sometimes you gotta’ root for Goliath

As the story about United Airlines v. three young girls first unfolded, it had all the makings of a major public relations disaster. The company would have received more support if it had announced that all its flights from now on would be preceded by a three-hour wait on the tarmac. In case you missed the story — and the internet storm that...
4 steps to better joint health

Your joints are truly amazing. Imagine walking with your best friend, bending to smell a flower or tossing a ball to your kids without your flexible joints. To help keep these moveable marvels healthy and free of diseases that can harm them — like arthritis and osteoporosis — practice a little joint TLC: 1. Keep moving. “Exercise...
Elephant ranch lets visitors bathe, feed, ride elephants
Elephant ranch lets visitors bathe, feed, ride elephants

A private central Florida elephant preserve offers a unique, hands-on experience to visitors. The Elephant Ranch allows tourists to get up close and personal with the majestic animals. >> Read more trending news The Two Tails Ranch located near Gainesville lets people feed, bathe and even ride the eight elephants living at the ranch. The nonprofit...
More Stories