Dragons are big fire breathing lizards with wings, that live in caves. In Alabama, these dragons are often called Blazers. In the Southwest, cold blooded reptiles like snakes and lizards, often seek shelter from the blazing, desert sun in the cool shade of a mine. Miners here in the desert, are familiar with the habits of these reptiles, and take the necessary precautions to exterminate the dangerous ones inhabiting their workplaces.
On Saturday, the UTEP Miners will enter the mine named The Don Haskins Center, which is infested with a bunch of confused Blazers who have mistaken the mine for their cave. I asked the Miners how they planned to deal with the situation. The foreman of the crew gave me a sly grin. He reminded me that he and his men had plenty of experience dealing with flammable gases and varmints in their line of work. He said there are a number of ways the Miners will attack the problem. He said the first thing they will do, their first line of defense, will be to smother the dragons, and thus their fire, eliminating their ability to breathe. As flames appear, Miners will bring additional manpower to suffocate the flame before it can become a blaze. About a half dozen huge, muscular, Miners voiced their assent and approval, stepping forward brandishing picks and shovels.
One member of the crew, considerably smaller than most of them, let out an evil laugh. Wild eyed, and with a maniacal grin, he held up two hands full of dynamite. Behind him were two or three more of the Miners holding dynamite. He spoke with a soft, quiet voice, that somehow seemed out of place coming from the lips of the Miner with the evil grin. Softly, he said, "You've heard that old saying about fighting fire with fire, right? You've blown out the flame on a candle, right? Well, we have our own way of doing that." He chuckled, then said, "We use dynamite to blow the candles out, down here." With a crazy laugh, he showed me his dynamite again.
The foreman spoke up. "That's enough talk. Sure, exterminating those scaly varmints is lots of fun. But, we have real work that needs to be done. We have to finish the room at the end of the shaft, and we are digging a new mine in Tulsa, next week. Grab your hard hats, lunch buckets, picks, shovels, and dynamite. Let's go to work!"