The chemistry lab was quite big. You would need at least a liter of petrol to smoke it up completely. But i manage to do it with a 25 paise coin and a few table spoons on nitric acid. I think its of common knowledge that nitric acid is used 4 cleaning as it is a corrosive but i was about to learn another interesting thing about it that fine day. It was our weekly chemistry lab and we were as usual jobless. I was walking around talking to everyone. Then some friends of mine(we call ourselves GRADHS) had this idea of putting a coin in nitric acid. They tried with dilute nitric acid and nothing happened. I was blissfully ignorant of this happening and was walking around. Then aravind called me asking for my expert opinion on the matter. In my usual self-possesed tone, i say
“guys what are you doing with dilute nitric acid. Lets do it with concentrated one”
Saying this i filled a bowl with nitric acid and put the 25 paise coin in it. It started quite well. There were a few crackles and bubbles coming out. Things started smelling fishy when white smoke started coming out of it. I failed to notice the fact that my friends were gradually moving away from the ‘crime scene’ as the intensity of the smoke started increasing. And by the time the smoke took a multi coloured texture i was the only one standing near it, hopelessly trying to keep it down by waving my hands while the whole class and thus obviously the teacher was looking at me.
I had my own custom made excuses for any situation that may arise. But because this was a new situation, never anticipated before and because i was caught red handed, i had perfectly nothing to say as i was led to the principal’s room other than my usual loong smile……