Imminent natural devastation, do you have enough vodka?

Infared satellite photo of Hurricane Irene at the time of this writing, and my proximity to it.

Settle down, folks.  It’s just a little breezy.

I’m getting a little tired of the hype over this thing.  We’ve been through dozens of hurricanes and come out on the other side just a little bit wet.  Sure, sometimes they are are pretty severe and they do a lot of damage, but the fact of the matter is, they aren’t going anywhere.  There will always be hurricanes, and if we were really all that worried about the long term effect they have on our lives, Kansas and Nebraska would be seriously fucking over-populated.

Before everyone gets all “but Eric, have you forgotten about Katrina?! Or Fran, or Ike or . . . or or or . . .”, no, I have not.  I’m really not talking about the storms themselves and the damage they can cause.  I’m talking about the hype they get on the news.  For the last 4 days I’ve been hearing about Irene and the storm to end all storms and that everyone from here to Nevada should evacuate.  I’m serious, news media, settle down!  At the very least, let’s at least have panic attacks in chronological order.

I’m watching the news and the Weather Channel and I keep seeing the same thing over and over again.  “Mass transit shutting down in New York”, “Massive evacuations in New York and Rhode Island”, “State of emergency declared for New York City”.

You know, I’m glad New York is getting ready, but I have some friends down in Wilmington, NC, a town I used to live in myself, that at this very moment are watching The Weather Channel going, “Good for New York, but HELLO??!!”  Ok, so maybe they aren’t watching it because their power is already out, so they are probably drunk now.  I’m glad my friends keep a good attitude about these things, because we’ve been through it before.and we’re kind of over it.

A good comparison in our attitude about it was perfectly demonstrated earlier in the week, when we had a 5.9 magnitude earthquake in Northern Virginia.  CNN and every news station in sight lit up like the world was coming to an end, federal buildings were evacuated, cell phone services got locked up and we were warned of aftershocks and Washington DC sliding off the continent (a bonus, really) and how the Washington Monument was actually tilting (oh yeah, Fox News actually reported that shit with a straight face).

. . . and the entire state of California collectively yelled, “Shut the fuck up, you whiny bitches!”

We’re kind of the same way with hurricanes over here.  If you want to run to the store and get some milk and bread just before the storm hits, feel free, you can get all you want.  If you want beer, you may want to get there early.  Like last Thursday, early.  Allow me to demonstrate the attitudes by sharing some Facebook posts off of my own personal wall, ALL of these people are friends of mine that live in and around Raleigh, NC and are just a couple of hours from being in the middle of the storm:

. . .and Melanie was a meteorologist . . .

They’re all pretty worried about dying, but not from the hurricane . . . from the alcohol poisoning.

Again, don’t get me wrong, it’s not that we don’t care about New York, but we do have some memories of hurricanes past and there are some things we’ve come to recognize because of the history and reasons we’re pretty much not taking the New York panic very seriously right now.

  • Hurricanes are unpredictable, which kind of make the “predicted path” maps sort of a joke.
  • Hurricanes LOVE Wilmington, NC and Charleston, SC.  They are drawn to those cities like a tornado to a mobile home.
  • Hurricanes that make landfall in those two places have historically done one of two things, a) take a hard left upon impact with land and head inland or b) bounce and head back out to sea and peter out.
  • The ones that do manage to follow the coast tend to disintegrate into a tropical depression long before it reaches New York.

I am not a meteorologist and like I just said, these things can’t be predicted, I’m just letting you know the history.  So you weather geeks that want to write in and tell me off, please join the guy I’m watching on the Weather Channel right at this moment who is literally having a seizure about the fact that there are now tornado warnings in effect and *GASP*, THEY ARE A RESULT OF THE HURRICANE!

No shit, Sherlock.

This storm is all we’ve heard about all day, and at this point, I’m kind of glad it’s here so I can just stare in wonder at it out the window.  For those of you that have never been in one, it is quite a sight to behold.  It is the biggest, most powerful thing you will ever see.  I actually stayed in town for a hurricane that once struck in Wilmington.  It gets darker than you could ever imagine it being in the middle of the day.  You can see the windows in your house bend with the force of the suction and you can watch all your shit fly away at 100 miles an hour.  You can feel the roof of your house actually lift up from the walls.  Then the eye will pass over and everything will get eerily quiet and you can actually walk out into the yard into the sunshine and there isn’t so much as a breeze, but be warned that all is not as peaceful as it seems.

Because all your shit is coming back at 100 miles an hour in a minute.  You may want to go back in the house.

Before I go, let me pass this on to all my friends down in Raleigh, some advice I got today . . .

North Carolina Hurricane Survival Kit

  • Toilet paper
  • Water
  • Vodka
  • Marlboro Lights
  • and some Vodka
  • and don’t forget Vodka

Good luck my drunken friends!  Give me a call tomorrow and let me know you’re alright!

EDIT: Just wanted to add this in for Greg at Telling Dad, just to let him know that yes, we do still care!



Facebook post of the day:

What can I say, I was the funniest guy I know today.

30 thoughts on “Imminent natural devastation, do you have enough vodka?

  1. It’s down to a category 1. Oops, their bad. I’m excited about the cooler temperature it’s going to bring us tomorrow!

  2. In Kansas they have tornados and the media act the same darn way!

    Of course, never in all my years here have I been so amused by someones description of the whole mess. Thanks for the best laugh of the day and yes, “Come on Irene ” is now totally stuck in my head!!

  3. That is probably the funniest thing I’ve read all day! I live in Upstate SC and people have even been talking about it here like we have something to worry about. I’m looking at them like, “you know we live too far inland for this to be a real concern, right?”

    Found you via Tazer’s Blogroll, and glad I did!

    1. I appreciate the compliment and thank you for stopping by! Please keep checking in and keep passing me around! I live too far inland as well, but I come from Raleigh and that is where all my peeps are. We’re getting residuals so far. For us it’s going to be just like the earthquake, we’re just going to feel the edge of it.

  4. hey, now — i might not get paid, but i’m still a meteorologist. i give my mom forecasts all the time. 😉

    the weather channel .. i swear, one guy on there hasn’t changed clothes in >24hrs. you nailed it, though — i’ve been bitching about the same crap all day. scare the hell out of everybody today, so that they’ll ignore you tomorrow. probably why they’ve decided not to bother with NC — we’re ignoring them already.


    1. It really is amazing, all this panic . . . and I look at Facebook to see if there is any word from my brother who is in Clayton and less than 20 miles from I-95 and practically staring at the eye of the storm and find that he is in the kitchen brewing beer and Facebooking about it.

      Sounds really dangerous down there.

      1. It was horrible! I barely slept after that nightmare! But like in all natural disasters, we pulled together as a family and persevered. H found the sieve and we just threw everything in to steep then strained the whole batch. I mean I can’t believe I was all out of grain bags, I always have extras! The horror… the horror…

  5. If you were to swap out hurricane for snow storm and reverse the rolls of the states, that’s how we feel when you people bitch and cry over snow. :p

    1. I don’t get to be filed under “you people”, I’ve got too much Michigan time under my belt, but yes, North Carolina folds up and goes to bed under just the threat of snow, so I get that.

      Oh, and . . . . *roles

      Just sayin’.

      1. (snicker)

        actually, i’m not sure too many of us get to be filed under “you people”, since about a third of us in NC these days are from NY/NJ. nevermind we get more ice than snow .. nobody can drive in that shit. 😛

        anyway, that’s exactly what i compared this to earlier on fb — irene is/was just a big, melted nor’easter. i guess we deal better with water, and the northeast deals better with snow. just pretend you can push it aside and pile it all on top of your cars, and you’ll do great. 😉

    1. As a non-drinker myself, I had no witty reply to this, so I turned to my lovely Kitten for the answer who said:

      “I have to agree with that wise woman. I’ve no witty reply, just total, head nodding, fist bumping agreement. Amen, Sister!”

  6. My kids have been outside playing in it all day. They have been throwing football with friends in the hood and we have been tossing water balloons at them all day. The wind has been blowing like crazy and they are laughing and having a blast! That is how much I was worried about it. I have been in TX in some horrific hurricaines and yes Fran sucked too! Hey I am still here!! Every damn channel is talking about the bitch Irene so I packed some boxes today to remove some clutter for the realtor and they are still talking about her. The bitch has left so they can stop now! DAMN!!

    1. Thanks, Teri! Another shining example of one of my Raleigh-ish friends laughing in the face of disaster folks!

      My friends are awesome because they scare hurricanes away. Take THAT Mother Nature!

  7. I was so scared man. I hung out in the man cave all day and played Dues Ex. I barely made it out alive. :-p

    1. And my voice from the Adirondacks of New York speaks out! Glad to here you came out in good shape, my brother! But seeing as how you run a lumber yard, don’t you kind of “get a woody” when trees fall down on their own? I mean, that’s kinda like Mother Nature doing the work for you!

  8. There’s no hiding from devastation like this. Kansas? I grew up there. There’s no place like home? Ring a bell? Tap the feet? Pick the house up and drop it on a witch? You can’t run from the weather. Just hunker down and drink. Nicely done on the summary of the calamity!

    1. Thank you! It was getting a little absurd. I understand the dangers and that yeah, not everyone is going to ride out unscathed but I think these reporters need a little reality check, because you know, the storm isn’t nearly as bad when you’re not standing on the fucking beach clinging to a pole!

      That said, best wishes go out to all my friends, family, readers, etc that did not fair as well after the storm. I know people in upstate New York (no, that does not mean the larger part of New York City) and have a friend up in Burlington, VT. Their reports tell me that it’s going to take quite a bit of wringing out, but for the most part, everyone is ok. My buddy in VT was at work the next day. (Apparently he took the long way.)

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