My Old Bike – Fired Up

Fired Up

Kids are fascinated with fire, boys especially.

Think about it; fire is colorful, animated, and responsive. And the fact that it is real, makes fire the perfect toy!

Moral of the Story

Don't play with fire! Or gasoline for that matter.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, age is a factor in the number of fires and many of them are between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. Click here for more information.

Talking Points

  1. "Potheads"
    Man have I taken some heat for this one. On the second page of the first chapter of the initial book in the series, Scrawny Ronnie uses the word "potheads" to describe his older brother's friends. I put this in the story as the very first talking point... ON PURPOSE!
    The fact of the matter is that drugs are a part of our kid's lives. From the time they are in elementary school, until they are off to college then on their own in the real world, our children are going to have to decide where drugs fit into their life.
    Back in the 1960's and 70's parents often used scare tactics. Today, with the legalization of marijuana in more and more states, that doesn't work so well. I don't have the answer as to what to say to a kid, but I can say that it is important for parents to have a open and ongoing dialog with their children about what is right and wrong, legal and illegal, safe and unsafe.
    To put it plainly, I had Scrawny Ronnie speak the word "potheads" to give you, the parent, an opportunity to start the conversation about drugs with your kids.
    In the book "Scrawny Ronnie," I will touch more on this topic. With the help of his parents and other adults, he does learn about right and wrong!
  2. Gasoline fumes burn, not the liquid!
    The flame ignited inside the milk jug because it was full of vapor. Had there been more oxygen in the milk jug it very well could have exploded in Frankie's hand. That is why you should always keep a gas can way away from a heat source such as an OPEN FLAME!


All definitions may be found at

  1. Inspection
    Careful examination or scrutiny.
  2. Magnificent
    Impressively beautiful, elaborate, or extravagant; striking.
  3. Smoldering
    Burn slowly with smoke but no flame.
  4. Instinctively
    Without conscious thought; by natural instinct.
  5. Respirator
    An apparatus worn over the mouth and nose or the entire face to prevent the inhalation of dust, smoke, or other noxious substances.
  6. Chastised
    Rebuke or reprimand severely.

Personal Note

My brother actually did set the woods behind our house on fire; the fire department had to be called in to put it out. An entirely different time I had the brilliant idea to put gasoline into a plastic milk jug then pour it over an open flame. But I think my oldest son was the craziest when he started a camp fire with a roman candle!

The time I spent down by the river with my friends taught me a lot. Respect for fire was certainly one important lesson. Perhaps if I had paid better attention to my grandfather I would not have had to learn the hard way 😉

Ready to read My New Bike?

Head over to Happy Endings Publications to purchase your signed copies of The Adventures of Frankie!

2 thoughts on “My Old Bike – Fired Up

  1. This Chapter is so realistic, but so much fun! The short story of this chapter is about kids playing with and eventually fighting with fire. As a teenager, I was drawn to the sense of action that the conflict brought to the story. There was also a sense of thrilling anticipation because everyone that has “played” with fire before has a pretty good idea of what is going to go down when you have gasoline in a milk jug near fire (FYI MORE FIRE!). This story reminded me of when I was younger and how my friends and I almost got into a lot of trouble with playing with fire behind our house in the back woods. I think it is so cool that this book can relate with my memory of my friends and me being stupid.

    This book is awesome.

  2. It is refreshing to see an author writing on topics that are important for parents to discuss with their teens.

    On the second page, in the first story of this book the author has the main character casually referencing drugs and sex. Many parents with young adolescent children will reject books that have anything in them that refers to sex or drugs. But this book helps by giving an opportunity to have a calm and safe talking environment for parents and their kids to discuss these topics. It is better for a child to learn about these things from a parent than to gain false or corrupt knowledge from their Junior High and High School friends.

    I applaud the author.

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