#9: Make a Fire with Flint. Check.

Normally, I hate those inspirational (or snarky) quotes superimposed on a photograph that people obsessively post on Facebook. It’s so phony. But this morning when I woke up, I felt like it was a TCOB kind of day and I saw this one:

I thought to myself, “I am totally going to make today my bitch.”

First stop: 24 Hour Fitness to work out with my trainer. At the end of the workout (the END, mind you) she had me do 70 push-ups all at once with the only break being a rest-position for a few counts but no official stopping. I was on the treadmill afterwards and this big gorilla juice head came up to me and asked how many push-ups I had done. When I replied 70, he shook his head (gold chain waving around his neck) and said, “Oh man! I was feeling for you! That was crazy!”

Next stop: My friend Kerrie’s house. She agreed to let me test my fire making skills in her backyard fire pit. Courtney also came, and we made sure to stock up on s’mores ingredients, wine, cheese and crackers I had two different flint kits to try out (wasn’t sure which one would be better). While their instructions on the back made building a fire from flint seem relatively simple, it really wasn’t. First off, making it spark was a challenge, then making a spark BIG enough to actually leave the flint was another issue. When the sparks weren’t catching on any of the dried leaves and tinder we had set up, I asked Kerrie if she had any dryer lint (I’ve heard it’s highly flammable and people use it for camping).

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It didn’t take more than a few minutes for me to get the lint to start an IMMEDIATE fire (making me realize just how flammable the inside of my clothes dryer could become).

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The next several hours were spent by the roaring fire, eating marshmallows and chilling out. It was pretty awesome.

ImageNow, starting a fire is not necessarily related to my disaster preparedness (though it might seem) but more on a “how hard is that really?” kind of level. Reality shows like Survivor or Man VS Wild show people having to utilize those kinds of skills, and I have always wondered how much does it really take to make a fire without the luxury of matches? I would say the flint probably took us about 30 minutes (maybe a little less) but GOOD GOD I have no clue how anyone would manage without flint. It was annoying and tedious to sit there and keep striking the flint hoping a decent spark would mildly go in the direction I hoped…but that being said, if I was out in the wilderness and actually had my flint to make a fire, 30 minutes seems not bad for something that could keep you warm, dry, and alive.

I definitely think I need more practice, but between the push ups and the fire, I totally made today my bitch.

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