July 28, 2010
We went to the mall on Sunday, mostly because it was officially Too Damn Hot For Life outside and had run out of other indoor time-killing options. Life lesson time, boys: If you get bored, just go somewhere and buy shit you don't need for awhile.
Anyway. The lights flickered once. Twice. We decided to leave, let the power go out and lead to mass looting at Build-a-Bear. We noticed it was raining really hard through the skylights, but by the time we got outside the sun was shining again.
The only evidence that a tornado had touched down nearby was...well, there were a lot of leaves all over the ground.
Oh. And shit like this:
That brownish...thing? That's the underside of a really big tree that just up and fell over. It peeled off a nice layer of the earth's crust and mantle on its way down, and yes I said MANTLE because BOO-YAH GEOLOGY 101. Preparing me for moments like this and not much else.
Not surprisingly, we lost power as a result of the storm. As did over 300,000 other homes in our area, which I swear is like, an actual high-density area where actual real people live and work and DVR their favorite TV shows and poop using fancy modern indoor plumbing, as opposed to McHillbillyville, USA or something. I get the sense that Pepco power lines are held together by little more than popsicle sticks and electrical tape and chewed-up gum from all the third-party contractors they hire EVERY TIME we get one of these huge county-wide outages, and each repair leaves everything a bit more rickety and outage-prone than it was in the first place.
Last time it took 84 hours for our power to be restored. This time we only lost power for about 53 hours. Fifty-three! That's nothing! And the temperatures during the day were only about 90, 91 degrees tops. I don't even see the point in blogging about any of it. What do you take me for, some kind of whiny brat urbanite with no coping skills, or something?
(DON'T ANSWER THAT.)
Unlike the winter outage, this one at least wasn't...scary, like we all going to contract pneumonia and then get into a terrible car accident when we try to drive to the hospital for medicine for our pneumonia because our fingers fell off from frostbite already scary. This outage was mostly boring and sweaty.
Noah: Mommy, can I watch a show?
Amy: No, sweetie, there's no power, remember?
Noah: Okay. I will watch a DVD instead.
Amy: Um, can't do that either, bud.
Noah: Okay. How about...the Star Wars game?
Amy: New rule of thumb, Noah. If something 1) lights up, 2) has buttons, or 3) is at all possibly remotely fun, it requires power, and you can't do it right now.
Noah: Okay. Can I play with your phone?
(And yet, just a few hours later, after the boys were in bed and Jason and I prepared to watch a DVD on his charged-at-work laptop, I totally went I KNOW! We can still catch the Mad Men premiere! You just have to rent it on iTunes or something! Why don't you do that? What? Oh. Right. Never mind. Yeah, we can just watch Idiocracy again, I guess.)
I kept trying to get work done at the coffeeshops and such, but so did everyone else from the 300,000+ powerless households. On Monday I drove to Jodi's house to bask in her recently-restored electricity, only to have it go out again after an hour and a half ("HAAAAA SO LONG SUCKER," I cackled as I left, gaining strength for future evil superdeeds from her misfortune).
On Tuesday I brought a big-ass wall outlet splitter with me and very politely asked a woman hogging an entire precious outlet with both her laptop and cell phone if she minded if we expanded the outlet's use for everybody, and...actually, it turned out she DID mind, a little bit, as she testily informed me that Panera had "a lot of other outlets" so she "didn't see the point" in using the splitter. When I mentioned that the plugs were actually all full and a bit more in demand than usual because of the power outages, she was like, "power outawhah?" but finally unplugged her shit for 10 measly seconds, then purposely replugged everything in so her chargers covered up more than one plug, just so no one else could use them. I did not like that lady, very much, and thought to myself that she deserved to get blogged about. So. There.
(Our power came back on last night, but I brought the splitter again today because there are still thousands of people still waiting for theirs. I was heralded as the Smartest, Nicest Person Ever. Which is MORE LIKE IT, INGRATES.)
Anyway. What the outage lacked in DRAMAZZZ, though, it certainly made up in DOLLAH BILLZ, because this is the current state of our once-packed freezer:
Okay, for dinner tonight, your menu choices are grated cheddar cheese, some fancy farmers' market flour that you have to keep in the freezer for some reason, a plastic ice pack and those weird flaxseed/spelt waffles that nobody likes.