Jason was out in the garage so I went out there and said "Will you come look at this and tell me if you think I should call the fire department?"
And he looked at it, looked at the giant metal post/wire thing coming down from an electric pole right in front of the step, and said YEAH.
So I called the fire department, and they must have been seriously bored, because I think we ended up with 5 firefighters and an arson investigator. Which is actually legit, because we've had a series of car arsons in the neighborhood, so they wanted to document this in case it was connected somehow.
And he said it probably just spontaneously combusted because it was so rotten. There were no accelerants, and nothing that looked arson-y.
So...yeah that was the big excitement.