The Nation: Fireman's Holiday

In the firehouses of Norman Rockwell's bucolic America, firemen passed the hours between alarms playing checkers and showing off the polished brass and bright red trucks to wide-eyed young visitors. But for the volunteer firemen of Genoa, Texas, in suburban Houston, that was not enough. In the past three years, eight bored Genoa firemen have set about 40 fires in abandoned buildings and grass fields. As soon as the blazes were going, the arsonists would dash back to the firehouse and rush off to put out their own fires.

The Genoa firemen were quite...

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