Yeah, we had a hurricane… er, tropical storm (sorta) come by our doorsteps this weekend. We hunkered down Saturday for a beatdown… Irene showed us what she had… which in our case, wasn’t much.
Now, I understand that significant damage was sustained in the Caribbean and on the Eastern Seaboard. Ten people have lost their lives. While I feel badly for the people affected, in the National Capital Region, The Weather Channel and local news made a big ado about an event… that wasn’t. We live 100 miles inland. And we knew in advance that only Tropical Storm winds would reach us. Why did our news media make us feel that Armaggedon was upon us? And even worse, why did we buy into their ponzi scheme?
Let’s start from the beginning, shall we? We knew about Hurricane Irene days in advance, and the destruction it wrought in Puerto Rico and The Bahamas. We were right to be concerned. In a panic though, most people stormed our local grocery stores and bought out their stock in water, toilet paper, cold cuts and bread. Then we started to wait… The rain and wind started mid-morning. Sheets of water didn’t start falling until mid-afternoon. The wind didn’t start kicking up until the evening. Hell, even planes were flying in to National Airport as late as 5 PM… so air traffic control wasn’t that concerned about the weather. I should have bought a clue then.
It wasn’t until bedtime that the wind started to get truly violent. But at that point, I was down for the count, so when my building finally lost power, I didn’t even notice. I wouldn’t have even known about it if a clock wasn’t blinking at me the next morning.
As a result, some of us lost electricity. Others have moderate flooding/water damage. A small tree cracked down the middle, and miraculously missed a car as it crashed into the street. Otherwise, the only thing that I lost… was my mind out of sheer boredom. I didn’t talk to one person during the day except for my cat.
Now apparently, the tropical storm is throwing its worst at New England and Canada. Does the New York City government now feel like a cad for shutting down it’s entire subway/public transportation system in advance of this “threat?” A friend who lives in uptown Manhattan texted me this morning and said that NYC for once, is peaceful. Apart from rain, nothing much is happening there either.
I want to congratulate my friends who cooked five course meals, had Hurricane Parties and got drunk. You know how to ride out a moderate, relatively low-impact weather event. For the rest of you, I hope you enjoy drinking soup and eating sandwiches over the next few weeks. Serves you right. Oh, and if anyone has a spare roll of toilet paper, I can save a trip to CVS this afternoon… thanks in advance!