At the risk of being called a mom-and-apple-pie hating socialist traitor, I’m gonna suggest we shelve fireworks as an Independence Day celebration ingredient. Like clandestine sex with your best friend’s spouse, fireworks provide a quick alluring “Boom!” of fun before the big-time regrets set in. Even the seasoned professionals can make mistakes, as last night’s small Trinity River grassfires at the Panther City Pavilion shindig proved. Luckily that incident was nothing like what happened at the Simi Valley fireworks Fourth display in California, where 34 spectators were injured after the rockets started going off horizontally.

Thanks to a childhood of fireworks safety drills, I associate the little crackers with missing digits and third-degree burns rather than an 18th century American victory over British oppressors. And then there’s that whole weird situation where you can legally buy fireworks but can only set them off in very limited locations and circumstances. It’s like saying, “Here’s a big slice of chocolate mousse cake, but you can’t taste it until you drive many miles outside the city limits, ‘kay? You’re on the honor system, so have fun!” Human nature doesn’t work that way.

I vote we nix dangerous fireworks and instead agree on some national ceremony that symbolically reenacts our independence. Maybe a well-paid volunteer dressed as a white-wigged Redcoat can stand onstage while spectators pelt him with boiled kidneys and crumpets (whatever those are). It’s a rough idea, but I’m still in the brainstorming phase. Still, I can guarantee you no one will lose a finger in that spectacle.


  1. i vote we nix everything. parades, celebrations; everything. it’s not over until someone gets hurt. how did i live this long with no seatbelts and metal dashboards?

  2. While we’re at it, I’m going to suggest we shelve automobiles as a method of transportation. Like being anally penetrated by a rhinoceros horn, automobiles provide a quick way to get from point a to point b, before your ass starts to burn (hey, gas prices alone, amirite?). Even professional drivers can make mistakes, as the countless deadly auto-accidents all across American highways every day have proven.

    I vote we nix dangerous automobiles and instead agree on a method of transportation that symbolically reenacts our cowardice as a nation. Maybe all the gay man in California can dress up in chickensuits and scream, “Buck-buck-B’COCK!” while they carry children to school on their backs. It’s a rough idea, but I guarantee nobody will lose a finger in that spectacle. Maybe their ass-virginity, but not a finger.

  3. I’m not gonna name names, but it sounds like *someone* lost his ass-virginity to a drunk relative in a chickensuit on the Fourth of July. Don’t deny all the California gay man [sic] wedded bliss just cuz daddy ruined man-love for you, NSIT. You can keep the fireworks as a consolation prize, though.

  4. I thought the Japanese fireworks were awesome, and it was cool that the mayor of our sister city in Japan was in attendance. Then some redneck took the mic, and said “Now let’s show ’em how we do fireworks in Texas!” as they were blaring some cornball, fascist “country” music. I half expected it to be one giant explosion that ended with a huge mushroom cloud. But instead it was two or three very uninspiring fireworks, and then a 30 minute delay to put out the grass fire. The turn-out was truly impressive, but the park was completely trashed. Nothing says Texas like trashing the environment, so I guess it was kind of appropriate.