Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Surviving Sandy…

Dear Friends,

I am writing to let you all know that I have survived Hurricane Sandy. Despite reports in the region’s papers and other media, I have not perished in a flood such as we have not seen in Western Mass in half a millennium. Indeed, it was touch and go with the unseasonably warm evenings and a slight drizzle. But, the full Moon peeking through the hazy clouds offered reassurance that the Universe had not ceased to exist and I still survived to ponder and distress at the dreadful news floating through the wires and air waves that still worked with the electricity that continued to surge miraculously to power my computers, cell phones and television sets proclaiming the horribility and certain doom that had beset me.

I enjoyed a cold seltzer from the fridge that amazingly still had a light on inside it. Between commercials on the cable news, I repeatedly checked on the status of that light. I finished the chicken salad and sat in the bath tub with a door torn from its hinges for some hope of safety in the ongoing apocalypse. Then it stopped drizzling and my wife knocked on the busted door and asked me to go to the store for some ice cream. I brazed the nonexistent storm to find a young lady from Pakistan tending the counter at the 7/11. She surely is made of sterner stuff than I. Yes, those people know the difference between drizzle and a monsoon.

Of course, I understand that folks just to the south of my home got a bit of a whacking from Mother Nature. I’m sorry for your troubles. I must, however, point out that if you live in a place with Ocean or Beach in it’s name, or if you are on an island in the middle of the second largest body of water on the planet, you will get wet and inconvenienced when a hurricane blows in. Oh, and try not to put your trains in tunnels next to rivers adjoining the 17,543,940,979,332,434 gallons of water weighing 170,543,940,,979,332,434 pounds (give or take an ounce or two). Don’t expect your power to stay on when your power stations are down by those rivers and in bunkers below sea level. If at all possible, try not to drive down a darkened street flowing with a torrent of waist high water as fallen electric lines spark and arc across the hood of your car. If you are in a basement apartment and tidal waves are crashing against your windows, pray later and run away immediately. These are just a few suggestions that I can offer in service to public safety.

Thirty-five folks perished as Sandy loped with predictable and lazy determination to expend her surfeit of global warming energy upon the East Coast. Meanwhile in the time she took to do her work, about a thousand folks died in America from less foreseeable circumstances; car and industrial accidents.

In conclusion, I will implore my many concerned friends across the globe to relax. I am safely ensconced in my lair one-hundred-thirty-eight feet above sea level and a good piece from the river. What we just experienced with this hurricane was not the worst storm in my own short memory of fifty-seven years on the planet. It was not even close. It was more an amalgam of poor engineering, poor preparedness and plain old dumbosity. Oh, and thank you to our regional and national media for killing millions of dollars in business and ruining the education of our kids for two days while you sold hemorrhoid medications and comfy soft toilet tissues every seven minutes between blasting the networks with made up news.

Res Ipsa Loquitor,