Just a heads-up that everyone should clean their gas heaters! I finally relented and turned my wall heater on yesterday. About three minutes later, I was staring at the computer screen as I am now, and suddenly the room was bright, like someone had turned on a floodlight. Turned around, and the heater had burst into flames and was shooting fire two feet high. It hadn't been cleaned (or used, probably, in L.A.) for ten years.

So I quickly turned it off, but no dice. Mini-inferno, and we're not talking "flames licked as high as two feet." We are talking "robust full-on fire completely and robustly filling two square feet of airspace above the heater, PLUS lickage."

I happen to have hundreds of pounds of baking soda on hand at all times (talk later), so I fucking dumped three pounds on the heater in a panic. That worked. Everything and its mother is coated in a fine dust, but isn't that better than being burned alive? Your mother says yes.

Be careful out there. Make sure your smoke alarms are all healthy and happy, k? K.