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Air Polluters

This one’s strictly for the minor league, neighborhood polluter, the small-timer whose smoky house chimney looks like the whole Indian nation is sending a smoke signal from his fireplace. Or try it on a small industrial plant where the roof and chimney stack have fairly easy access. Davey Jones dips into his nasty locker for an actual story.

We had this neighbor who used to burn garbage in his fireplace. I think his specialty was burning dead animals. The gunk that poured out of that man’s chimney would give soot a good name. It made Gary, Indiana look like God’s Country.

“The fallout, both particulate and odorous, was terrible all over the neighborhood. There were complaints to the authorities, petitions, neighborly persuasion visits. Nothing worked.

Then, one night when he was out, we got up on his roof and poured soft tar down his chimney stack. He was gone two days, came back,and fired up his fireplace. After about ten minutes, the fiery heat ignited the soft tar coating we’d given his chimney…WHOOMM and WHOOOSHHH, it looked like a combination of a Roman Candle and a direct hit on a fuel dump in a war movie.

“The fire company got there in time to prevent serious damage, and the fire marshall gave him hell because of the situation. Everyone blamed the man for burning crap in there all those months. He moved out of the neighborhood shortly after that.

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