Lights Out, Uh Huh…

18 09 2008

You may or may not be aware of the massive blackouts that have occurred from Texas all the way up to New York (hence, my J. Geils Band reference), but we felt Hurricane Ike’s wrath all the way up here in Hooterville. In fact, the entire town was basically shut down four an entire week. I know I really shouldn’t complain about not having electricity for four-ish days when there were people in Texas who lost their homes, but I really do find disruptions to my routine distressing. All of the forced downtime gave me some time to think as I got caught up on my housework and I have had several mini-revelations I’d like to share with you:

1. There are stages you go through during a long-time blackout, much like the stages of dying and/or grief:

  • Shock. “Oh my God, the lights are out! I wonder how long this will go on? Where are the candles?”
  • Elation. “Really? I don’t have to go to work today? I can get some one-on-one time with my kid AND get caught up on my housework? And I can’t do the laundry I’ve been putting off? Score!”
  • Boredom. “Sure, we can sing the clean-up song from Barney while wearing tiaras and blowing bubbles in the backyard! We’ve got all day, my little friend! I’ve already cleaned the house, alphabetized the toys in your room, AND made a scrapbook of your third cousin Itchy’s wedding!” (Meanwhile, you’re secretly plotting a looting spree with your girlfriends because there really is nothing else to do)
  • Denial. “The lights won’t be on til two weeks from Tuesday? Nuh-uh. They’ll be on tomorrow. I just know it! The crews are working really hard.”
  • Anger. “What?! (struggling to maintain composure) You told me this morning that the power would be back tonight. Now you’re telling me that it won’t be back for another week? Hold on a sec… (tone becomes increasingly shrill) If I told you once, I’ve told you a thousand times, don’t bother Mommy while she’s on the phone. Yes, I know you need to go to the potty! (pause) Figure it out! Just leave Mommy alone! She’s talking to the nice man from the %$#!@ electric company! (tone brightens a little) Now, what were you saying?”
  • Bargaining. “Maybe if I get my house clean and ready for the power to reappear, the lights will magically come on all by themselves. It could happen! Kind of like ‘Field of Dreams’…if I clean it, they will come.”
  • Acceptance. “Screw it. The power is never coming back and I’m going to die a horrible death at the hands of looters who will step over my lifeless body as they search for my iPod, which they’ll probably sell for crack, anyway. Bastards. Where’s the wine?”

2. During a lengthy blackout, your spouse and children can do nothing right. Just accept it and relocate to an undisclosed location and be done with it.

3. Too much time on your hands is a bad thing. Trust me on this.

4. In the shower, no one can hear you scream, especially if you stuff a washcloth in your mouth first.

You think I’m kidding, don’t you? I have never dropped the f-bomb as many times in my life as I did over the past few days. Seriously, it was ugly and I’m just now starting to come down from all of the excitement.

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5 responses

19 09 2008
Cuz Karen

great blog,! as always!

there is a slight upside ya didn’t get any snow or ice, right??!!
i think of power outages in Ohio, and i think of that ice storm a few years back! then the snow storm a few days later , or was it the other way around…
anyway it was awful! Doug had just had hernia surgery and we were living in that tiny trailer! talk about no room!

anywho, again great blog, and glad you’ve got your power back!

Luvs Ya!

19 09 2008
Jim

HA! Having worked for that particular utility for several years, we consider it a badge of honor to get bitched at for things that are well beyond our control!

Very funny, as always!

19 09 2008
G. Nichols

I never got to the elation phase. My job never closed, even though we had no business being open. I never got time off, and so I went to work to get away from my little pitch-black apartment, and went home to get away from my pitch-black, airless, hot as heck place of employment.

11 02 2009
V-Day Countdown « So Many Flavors, So Little Time!

[…] already under a tornado watch, so I’m really hoping that we don’t have to revisit this scenario anytime soon. And if I see the following, I’m not coming out of my basement anytime […]

20 05 2009
menmaignkaf

Great internet site=) i will definitely come back again soon=)

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