Friday, August 15, 2003

Well, that was interesting.

Remember those safety movies they used to show in school, the ones that told us not to plug two octopus-plugs and four extension cords into a single electrical outlet? Well, those folks knew what they were talking about. I'm just sayin'....

But seriously, our own domicile never lost power, as of this writing. Weird. At about 5:15 yesterday, I turned on the TV for no particular reason, and saw footage of thousands of people hoofing-it out of NYC. Of course, my first thought was some kind of terrorist attack, but that was assuaged almost immediately by the headline of a massive blackout. And then the news flashed a map of the effected area, including all of New York State, Ontario, and the eastern half of the Great Lakes Region -- and I'm sitting in the middle of it, with uninterrupted power.

I'm incredibly impressed at the general calm reaction to it all, pretty much everywhere -- if going through something like 9-11-01 can ever be said to have a silver lining, that would probably be it. I find disheartening the parade of experts on TV pointing out that our electrical grid is an antiquated mess and has been for years; I just heard on the Today Show that a year ago Congress refused to allocate money for grid modernization, and I can't wait for the inevitable debates as to the role deregulation played versus the solution being more deregulation. I do hope that maybe something like this will maybe get people to think of nuclear power in terms other than those shaped by Chernobyl.

(Oh, and I lost my writing day entirely due to the outage. Even though we never lost power, I turned off the computer and unplugged its cords in the expectation that we would lose electricity at some point during the restoration process.)

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