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September 21, 2008


I feel for you. After Hurricane Wilma, we were without power for ten days, and after about eight, I started cruising slowly through Fort Lauderdale looking for coffee shops with lights and wi-fi. Good luck with the withdrawal.

Ain't the iPhone grand, though?

Sorry about no power. If only it weren't for school, your job, etc., it would be worth taking a little vacation to anywhere where the lights are still on...

Glad you're OK, though.

I suspect the utilities here are going to get sued.

I just got my power back today, and we suffered -- moderate wind damage. But Centerpoint (our grid manager) had not kept up with maintance in years.

Until yesterday, I had not seen a tree-trimming crew in my area for years. They were at LEAST five years behind in tree trimming around lines, there were polls that needed to be replaced that had merely been braced and ignored, and years of neglect basically just bit them.

They're already lobbying to avoid being forced to build high-power line supports from steel and concrete, and from being forced to try to keep more up to date in trimming back growth from lines.

If it's anything like Florida, not only won't the utilities get sued, they'll get a rate hike to cover the upgrade, plus a little money from the state to cover the profits they lost because they can't charge for electricity while the damage is being repaired. Think I'm kidding? That's what FPL got away with after Wilma in 2005.


Glad to hear you are OK.

Take catching up on the news slowly, or you may feel like you've just come out of carbon-freeze like Han Solo in SWE6

Yes iPhone has been a saviour. I've been able to follow news at a mwmeorandum level. And I follow the polls. But I know very little beyond that. From what I gather were about to give wall street a trillion dollars for nothing. Seems like it's pitchfork time

about to give wall street a trillion dollars for nothing. Seems like it's pitchfork time

You've neatly captured the essence. The deprivation may make you even pithier!

Great to hear from you and hope your household's fine. I'm concerned about how little national focus there is on the aftermath.

The aftermath must be frustraing and miserable. I'm glad you and your family got through Ok.

In case anyone is intersted: Emily is up walking around, socailizing with us. She greeted me when I came home from work by rolling on her back for tummy tickles. Now she's sitting in the kitchen staring a hole in paul as he cooks dinner. She still looks like a bunch of sticks in a sack but her spirits are up.

Power poles in the Florida Keys are made out of concrete (real concrete, unlike the ones in Miami-Dade). And the trees get trimmed.

Those poles stand up to mild and even moderate hurricanes. The experience of frequent hurricanes has made the population demand decent power poles.

My sympathies Publius. You've gotten nine years of hurricanes in one large dose.

I've been told that 80% of customers in my zip code are expected to have power by Thursday. The way things are going, I expect that's false, and I'll be in that last 20% anyway.

I start chewing the furniture after 3 days, Publius. But I'm glad you and yours are all Okay.

Also glad to hear Emily's good, wonkie.

Hey, publius, me too! Thank goodness for internet at work and air conditioning there. How are your little ones holding up? We have been enjoying our time on the front porch and spending more time with the neighbors.

Wonkie: How's Blackie interacting with Emily? (I had to hit my wife up for money to put in my checkbook to pay bills, so I didn't have the heart to ask about getting one of those English Setters I mentioned the other day.)

Publius: Take care. Don't know if you are an NFL fan, but here's an update: The whole league has been turned upside down -- sounds like the Texans will be able to play their Oct. 5 home game.

I just moved to Florida from the hurricane-free zone of Seattle. Spent three days without internet following the relatively whimpy Fay. Thought I would go NUTS.

Take care and best wishes to you for the recovery, cleanup, and restoration efforts still to come.

Blackie barks at Emily if she gets too near his couch. Otherwise they don't really react much too each other.

Emily has the pathetic big-eyed starving child routine down cold. It is impossible to eat in this house without her silent, bony presence, staring fixedly,right there next to me,while one paw tentatively pokes me. She is umbelievably endearing.

Anyhoo enough of that.

I'm pretty much an Internet addict but what i really miss when the power goes out is hot water. ANd being unable to cook anything. And beingunable to read after dark. Nine days of that would be HARD.

wonkie, or anyone else, the very BEST thing to have in power outage is a headlamp, a small flashlight on an elastic band that fits on your forehead. Everywhere you look is then somewhat lit up and your hands are free. It makes the darkness bearable. And reading possible.

Hang in there, Publius. My sister is in Houston, and has been communicating via her Blackberry. I was in Houston for Alicia, so I know a little about what you're going through (I now live in what a previous commenter referred to as the "hurricane-free" Seattle area). If your Ipod is working, comfort yourself with Bowie tunes (I still remember you explaining the gay nature of the lyrics of "Moonage Daydream" via email to me, back in the Legal Fiction days).

wonkie: I love reading your dog updates. I don't have much t osay about them, but I love them.

Still no power in Memorial. I'm at the folks house on lake Livingston and having to drive all the way to Freeport for a client's project.

I did a six month cruise on the Eisenhower in the 80's, but now I officially hate Ike.

Speaking of climbing up the walls, forgive me for going off-topic, such as it is, but jfc, Bill Clinton has been talking for some half an hour on David Letterman so far, and has yet to say one word about Barack Obama, or why anyone should vote for him, or why anyone should prefer him to John McCain.

He's talked about how he "likes John McCain," and he's talked about how "John McCain or Barack Obama should relish" becoming President, and that's effing it!

He's got a couple of minutes left; maybe he'll get around to it, but by this point, I don't care. Effer.

Gary, once you accept that Bill Clinton is interested in one and only one thing - Bill Clinton - what he does is a little easier to take. Stop expecting - he can't/won't deliver.

Thanks, hilzoy. Very gracious. I'll try not to make an inch into a mile.

I got the impression during the primary that Bill wanted Hilary to win more than she did. He wanted another shot at the Presidency by proxy. That is also why I thoughtit would be impossible to have Hillary for VP: even if she could handle playing second fiddle there was no way in hell that Bill could handle being the spouse of the seocnd fiddle. No way.

Chris Rock had the same reaction I did: "Is it me, or did he not want to say the words 'Barack Obama'"? He went through everything he could do, and what Hillary could do.... Hillary ain't running!

I blog.

Incidentally, OT, Ralph Peters is">http://www.nypost.com/seven/09202008/postopinion/opedcolumnists/our_sister_sarah_palins_anti_elitist_cha_129908.htm">is an ass.

I love the doggie updates too.
Somehow a doggie is so much more...endearing than a piece of metal, even if the latter is supposed to eventually be able to think like us.
Wonkie, check out Jim Corbett's books about India.
All of them are priceless, and have excellent animal stories (Corbett was a hunter back in the days when the English empire was declining).
Good luck all of you in withdrawal. I go on five week vacations with no Internet access (in camping sites to keep cost down).
Have to do detox every once in a while to keep your soul.

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