A tale of the hazards of ether:
Years ago I was a warehouseman for a medical charity which accepted
donations of medical supplies, and yes, we got the occasional old,
potentially explosive can of ether. I was unaware of the potential peril
until a volunteer, an old army nurse, shared her story.
Mary was an army nurse in Europe during WWII. She worked in a tent
hospital, I guess it would be a mobile surgical unit in today’s parlance.
The way they anaesthesized their patients was by placing a gauze pad over
the mouth and nose and pouring ether on it. On one occasion, the light
which they were using sparked, which was enough to ignite the ether vapors
in the air. Or rather, not just in the air. Even the ether vapor in the
patient’s lungs ignited, which for a split second illuminated the patient’s
chest cavity from the inside out, to such a degree that the onlookers could
clearly see the rib cage through the skin. The patient died instantly, his
I guess what I’m saying here is that you should very carefully consider
the risks vs. benefits of using ether. Is it really a patina “to die for?”