Sometimes I choke myself for writing.

…piled with handfuls of dried chili and fresh-cut swatches of wild Nootka rose, heavy with ripening hips.

Because of this sentence, I had to burn rose hips and a ghost chili by candle flame and I almost DIED.  Why?  Because my word slaves wanted to  know what it smelled like and I couldn’t just make it up.  Actually, I could have (and usually do), but I had the materials on hand, so I went ahead with my ritual sacrifice (the sacrifice?  My throat and lungs).

Here be the rose hips and the chili:

Now note that this isn’t just any chili.  This is a ghost chili, also known at the Bhut Jolokia, also known as the hottest pepper in existence (except a new hybrid, apparently…so, the hottest, un-genetically mutilated pepper in existence?).  It also happened to be the only dried chili I had on hand.  So obviously, it had to burn.  (The rose hips I had were from the late fall, dried extras from the rose hip tart I’d made at Thanksgiving)

So, first, I burned a rose hip.  This went smoothly, and the hip glowed like a red, candle-lit lantern (as you can see).

And then, I burnt the ghost chili.

Yeah.  Burn.

So, lovely–fire, smoke, pyromania, yay!  But, a few words of advice:

DO NOT INHALE THE SMOKE OF THE BHUT JOLOKIA.  It’s a little like swallowing molten iron filings and thumb tacks and scorching ash all at once.

I blame my word slave’s curiosity.  But apparently curiosity is no long suicidal–it’s homicidal instead.

And so, now the bit about the burning hips and chilis reads like this:

Both were piled with handfuls of dried chili and fresh-cut swatches of wild Nootka rose, heavy with ripening hips.  He coughed as he sucked in smoke through his nose; it was like inhaling dried, charred tomatoes and hot, spiced ashes, fine as dust.  The scent was thick as smoking meat.



One thought on “Sometimes I choke myself for writing.

  1. I always told you to never, NEVER, mess around with the weapons grade chili gifted to you unless it was a matter of self defense. So what were you defending yourself from? Your word slaves are at your beck and call, are they not? Or is it a matter of the right side of the brain seizing control?

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