sorabji.com: What does it look like where you are?: Darkness

By platypus on Wednesday, April 20, 2005 - 12:52 am:

    So, PG&E is having what they call a "scheduled outage" tonight, which sounds like a fancy term for a party, but actually isn't.

    Those of us who endured the rolling blackouts in 2001 may remember the joy of suddenly having all of their household appliances die, sometimes without warning, because PG&E would be all stealthy about where they would post the notification.

    They were actually pretty good about sending out notices for this "scheduled outage," in that EVERYONE IN A TWENTY MILE RADIUS EXCEPT ME got one. So one can imagine my surprise when I cruised into work this morning to find all chaos erupting as people desperately shuffled ice cream around into the three freezers that are on a backup generator.

    'cause this is going to be a kind of long "scheduled outage," apparently, according to the notices. Most of the rolling blackouts were a couple of hours--this is "projected to last eight to twenty four hours."



    I really shouldn't be so het up about it. I think they are putting in a new substation or something. And I can see how they wouldn't want to get electrocuted doing this. And of course the cops are annoyed because they have to step up patrols, for fear of rampaging hoodlums who of course will flock to the streets to take advantage of this blackout bounty. I predict that anarchy will break out in under five hours.

    So, my power is going out in 11 minutes. This city is the largest source of light pollution for miles. It's going to be kind of cool. I'm going to go out and amble around, maybe take some pictures with infrared film just to see how they come out. I've decided that I should be excited about this, and treat it as the party that it is.

    What would you do if you knew there was going to be no power in a large radius for at least twelve hours where you live?

By dave. on Wednesday, April 20, 2005 - 02:22 am:

    well, besides batteries, firewood and beer, i'd hang out and listen to the radio. i guess that depends on how widespread the outage is. 10 mile radius, 100 mile, 200 mile radius. i have a gas grill about full. that's several meals worth of cooking time. i've thought about getting 3 or 4 tanks of propane and just hoarding them. maybe that's not a bad idea.

By patrick on Wednesday, April 20, 2005 - 11:37 am:

    go for a drive or sleep.

By wisper on Wednesday, April 20, 2005 - 01:31 pm:

    Been there, done that, in 2003 when the blackout hit this side of the continent. But we had no warning. And it was in the late afternoon throught the night.
    I mostly ate all the ice cream in freezer, talked on the phone (they still worked), played cards.
    When it got dark i sat on the lawn and watched the housemates and our friends who came over get drunk on the lawn. Lots of people were just walking around the streets drinking, raising their bottles and going "WOOOOO!" whenever a cop drove past.
    All night long.
    Going for a drive was out since there was no traffic lights. It was so very dark.

    Before the sun went down it was all wholesome outside. Everyone seemed to be out, talking to their neighbours or riding bikes. All you could smell was barbeque as people got rid of the meat in their fridges. Everybody had food to share with everyone else before it went bad, they'd offer strangers food as they walked past: "Hey buddy you want some hot dogs?? come on over! or steaks?? Please?!". A few car stereos were cranked up to hear news updates.
    Kids were playing in the streets.
    It was just plain CREEPY, like how i imagine it was in the 1950's.

By Antigone on Thursday, April 21, 2005 - 11:56 am:

    Yeah, it was just like it was in the 50's.

    ...when the power wenr out...

By Antigone on Thursday, April 21, 2005 - 11:56 am:



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