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Sunday, September 30, 2012


Last night I learned how difficult it is to set a fruit afire.

Some of you know if you put a match to an old Christmas tree it soon becomes an amazing blazing inferno.  A neighbor once called the cops when I torched one in my front yard.
I figured if I built a paper-mache mango over a small pine tree I could easily stage the world's first Burning Mango event  (announced in my previous blog entry).   As it turned out, it wasn't so easy.
The flaming fruit was scheduled to be the grand finale of a garden party to raise funds for President Obama and our friend, Jose Javier Rodriguez (who is running for state house representative).
The party went very well.  Speeches were given by candidate Jose and Phil Stoddard (the mayor of South Miami) and we sang Happy Birthday to Gray (the one on the right in the "Singing Soul Sisters" group).

After the speeches, people wrote down their wishes for the next four years on strips of paper.  They were then stuffed into the giant mango as it was passed around.
As a full moon was rising I placed the giant mango atop a bamboo stick.  The 90 attendees chanted "Four more years!", I put a torch to it, then,

Nothing happened.

Apparently the glue and house paint that I had used to make it resist fire quite well.     

As the chanting changed to, "Four more minutes!",  I stabbed the darn thing with a kitchen knife.  Squirted lighter fluid into the gaping wound helped a lot. 
There was now a fire inside and the orb began to glow.   Soon flames were climbing to the heavens taking our wishes with them.

A minute later only skeletal embers remained.

There were still many bottles of wine so the party continued.  By the end of the night we had collected over $4600.  It may sound like money to burn but we'll be using it to make wishes come true.
A BIG THANKS to Theo, John, Teresa, Thorn, Francesca, Paul, AJ, Bob H., Edith, Jose, Phil, Bob D., Lynn, Cecilia, and everyone else who attended or helped make last night's affair such a success.   
Note:  This party was a little different.  Besides being the first to burn a mango, it was very green.  Using glasses and small napkins, instead of paper cups and plates, the garbage we generated could have fit inside a large purse.  Lacking one, we put it in a garbage can.

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