Those Pesky Cake Fires. Birthdays Oughta Be Illegal.
Over 143,000 people are burned alive every year by their birthday cakes. Not really. But we've all been to parties where the flames from the cake were almost out of control due to the indeterminate age of the birthday boy or girl and the masses of candles required to celebrate the suspicious momentous occasion. We just extrapolated a little with this piece. Could happen---you never know
Satellite imagery shows smoke over three states
Firefighters struggle to save home
"Cake Fire" Claims Local Home
"It was like a furnace---like the furnace of Hell!" laments party survivor
Yourtown---- (NOTICE: Any names of towns, locations, people, institutions, etc., used in these sample fake newspaper stories, are purely fictional, chosen at random, and are not meant to portray or represent any real person, place or deed. Remember that no matter what name a writer chooses to use in any fictional story, there is a real person (or many persons) SOMEWHERE who have that exact name.)
Local man Casey Jones barely escaped serious injury Thursday afternoon when a fire gutted his home in the University District. Firefighters were amazed by the ferocity of the blaze. Said Jim Blake, spokesman for LRFD, "We've never seen a fire spread so quickly. The ignition point must have been like the heat from a super-nova. We just don't know what kind of accelerant could have caused this much damage in so short a time." On-lookers said Jones was having a get-together with family and friends, and neighbors noticed a "significant glow" through the curtains from inside the house. "It was like someone was making a movie in there," said one spectator. "Then, all of a sudden, all those people came boiling out of that house, and the next thing we knew, the whole place was in flames. It was like a bomb went off in slow motion!" Firefighters interviewed several of the party-goers, though most seemed reluctant to talk about the incident. One man, however, confided to the Times that the home-owner was celebrating his birthday when the problem began.
"Casey's cousin, Joann Huntsford, had just brought the cake out into the living room and was lighting the candles," admitted the man, who requested that his name be withheld. "There were more candles, and more candles, and pretty soon that cake was roaring like a gasoline fire. Everybody started moving back. The children were crying, 'No more Mommy! No more!' The heat was really getting fierce. Pretty soon, even the candles that weren't lit just started melting and falling over. The frosting on the cake was beginning to vaporize. Then it got hard to breath in there." Fireman Blake explained that, due to the size of the flames, the oxygen was likely being removed from the room. "It's lucky they got out when they did," he conceded. "That cake was like a giant flame-thrower." Mr. Jones suffered only minor burns when he tried to retrieve one of his birthday presents, but friends and family likely thwarted the grim reaper by admonishing the man to forget the cheesy gifts and save his own skin.
"I owe them my life," admitted Casey. "I do."
When asked just how many candles were on the cake, the crowd grew quiet and refused to reply.
See "Old as the Hills" Page D-5
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