Modern Fire Codes Prevent Art From Catching Fire When Searching For Meaning

Kushagra Gupta

Did you know that, “the art gets what the art wants” was once a popular saying on campus? Until the Cleveland fire department campaigned against its usage, the phrase was engraved in the heart of every student, and it used to represent the ceaseless spontaneous combustion of art pieces that students faced when trying to find meaning in sculptures and statues.

It’s not uncommon to see a Case Western student staring at a piece of modern art, trying to find a meaning in it. Perhaps these students are having a bad day or just at a low point in their semester. Heck, maybe they’re just trying to catch a breather between classes on a long day.

Unwittingly, what these students may not know is that thanks to modern fire codes, they are actually protected from attempting to appreciate a piece of art and are instead forced to talk to a friend or mentor about their problems.

Many don’t know, but without modern fire codes today, many art pieces that we hold dear to us would actually impulsively ignite as we attempt to locate their inner meaning. In fact, in the olden days, it was common for soul-searching persons to be disappointed with their answers due to sculptures and even fountains catching on fire. (The latter would catch due to a mixture of the ‘stressful’ pool of lighter fluid that was kept within them and sparks from the ‘wearily’ placed lighters within the fountains.)

Furthermore, after many accidents, the codes also now require fountains to have a cylindrical shape so as not to prompt persons to comfort themselves, leave and then be stressed-again-but-also-on-fire.

None of these disasters, however, compare to the CWRU wooden statue fire of Java-Biophysics-psychology (3241). Reportedly, this fire stretched out so large that its fiery debris hit over half the campus. According to lore, the statue exploded due to the insides being made up of 7,000 pounds of nitroglycerin that ignited. The cause, however, is still unknown, as nobody could figure out if students going to the Java-Biophysics-psychology final caused it, or if they were on the way back from it.

In addition to this, old fire codes lacked statutes that required paintings and engravings to have strange or unique names.

Due to this, in the olden days, the “ugly statue” was actually named the “The flower of Case Western Reserve University.” The statue was renamed after multiple instances of unplanned combustion of the statue, which at many times resulted in ruminating students’ Denny’s meals getting cold, getting locked out of their building and remembering that homework was due at midnight.

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