So I'm driving home on a familiar route, albeit not my normal one. Exit the highway and proceed south on the state highway. I'm in the right-hand lane as I cross what passes for the Arkansas River these days. There's a white pickup in front of me. As I finish crossing the bridge I see an old, gray, 80-something pickup with the hood up, and an SUV behind it with flashers on. I spy a glance of a short, stout woman with less than a full mouth of teeth holding a gas can and a man who I presumed was the driver of the SUV. Suddenly the white pickup in front of me lurches to the right and pulls onto the shoulder. I glance back at the old, gray pickup and see them.
Orange flames! *Collective gasp from the audience*
I pull over right in front of the white pickup and exit my Jeep with fire extinguisher in hand, right behind said pickup's driver who also has one. Smart man! As we arrive at the front of the old beater, I look around and see no flames, so I ask if the fire is out and if we need to call someone or pull the thing out of traffic. Crazy lady "reassures" us by saying "oh it does this all the time" as she leans over the engine which was, until very recently, enveloped in a rather vigorous conflagration and proceeds to pour gas in the general vicinity of the carburetor and then attempts to start it.
The engine sputters and spews exhaust and gasoline as my fellow "firefighter" and I back away not-so-slowly. She repeats this process, with the engine turning over a couple times only to die shortly thereafter. She finally manages to get the thing started, jumps out quickly, closes the hood and takes off without a word to any of us. No filter on the carburetor, just close the hood and go.
The other drivers and I exchanged bewildered glances, then my fellow "firefighter" and I wait for a clearing in traffic and cross back to our vehicles. I say "What drives someone to pour gasoline on a recently-on-fire engine and then drive the thing away like nothing happened?" He replied "I don't know. I'd have hosed it down with the extinguisher, called the fire department and walked away."
They walk among us, folks. Stay safe out there.