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...a sweatshop of moxie

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Here We Go Again

Soon-to-be Hurricane Rita is headed right towards us in South Florida, bloody thing. The rains and winds JUST started, so I decided to post this, with a view to update it should we have power at midnight, sigh...more later.

MIDNIGHT UPDATE: There's good news and bad news! Good news is that T.S. Rita has made a slight southward dip, which perhaps will spare Key West proper from flooding, and which means those of us in Miami-Dade County might have power overnight. Hurrah! Another night of perspiring naked on top of sweaty sheets is not my idea of fun...wait, did I just say that?

Bad news is that both NFL games tonight, which I watched in order to take my mind off of things, were the pits. I should've been reading the 47 public library books or 2 films (see sidebar) from Blockbusters', that I have out. What a waste.

Now you watch: locals here will start complaining that "media hype" made people nervous and scared needlessly -- just because we won't get a direct hit by Rita.

This despite the fact that EVERYONE in three counties was complaining that local news outlets dropped the ball regarding the path of Katrina, just because she was forecasted to hit somewhere in North Broward, instead making an evil downward turn, almost as if she had eyes (that storm was the Glenn Close of hurricanes and New Orleans was the bunny -- nasty little stalker), and leaving large chunks of Dade and Monroe Counties without power for almost a week.

Why are people like this? Why must they always find someone to blame?

I didn't put up my shutters because of you people!
You said it was going to miss Miami!
Why didn't you go on the air and warn us more!

Well, actually, they did. It's just that people hear what they want to, and besides -- you can't tell Americans what to do.

They just won't be told, or ordered to do things like in other countries.

I have an Italian acquaintance who said had he been Bush, he would've ordered the National Guard to evacuate people from Katrina's path, no ifs ands or buts.

That's just not the way things work in America.

And never mind that that's a total misreading of Federal v. State v. Local prerogatives -- non-Americans just don't undertand the legal niceties here.

Americans don't have that tradition of strong-arming the populace. At most you can warn, suggest, implore, but you can't storm in like Mussolini's blackshirts, and kick people out by State fiat.

Yes, even for their own good.

If you even dare try that, you'll get called names which sound remarkably like variations of Fascist.

But when things go wrong, then instead of saying, "Oops, I didn't pay attention to the warnings", they start looking around for other scapegoats.

Worse, they intimate it's just to get you to buy stuff (hint, Capitalism depends on frequent "con jobs", like Christmas, hint hint).


Just once, I'd like to hear someone say, "You know what -- I screwed up. I take full responsibility for my actions", rather than starting the blame game, and calling lawyers to launch lawsuits.

Right, well I've had my little rant du jour.

I'm exhausted from putting up hurricane shutters, buying tunafish and Vienna sausages I'll never eat, and obsessing about Bands, Tracks and Cones.

Best of luck to all in ole Rita's path. She may not be hitting us, but she's hitting someone tonight.

7 AM UPDATE: What! I briefly woke up, turned on telly, and she's still hanging about -- what a slow-moving tropical storm, despite long-time Channel 6 anchor, Bob Mayer, saying she's moving at a brisk 15 mph pace. But she's still in the EXACT same location as when I went to sleep, madness! When I heard Gov Jeb Bush (who BTW, is the mirror opposite of Gov Kathleen Blanco -- proactive, and extremely efficient, as well as planting himself in Miami alongside us, instead of staying in the State capital, Tallahassee) had ordered the Turnpike tolls still suspended, as in all hurricane warnings, I really really wanted to take advantage for a moment, and go to Disney World. Poop. More later.

3:15 PM UPDATE: Lovely. I turn on the TV and see she's officially Hurricane Rita now. I also see that despite frequent injunctions by police not to, there are surfers in Haulover Beach (otherwise known as a nudist beach, judged the #2 best in the world, after Montalivet, in France) who are taking advantage of the choppy high waves to catch some tubes. This with East Broward and Homestead under Tornado Warnings! For those who don't know, hurricanes spawn tornados. Isn't that nice? ...I'm bored stiff at home, as there is little which gives you such cabin fever as a hurricane. More later.

11:30 PM UPDATE: She's already up to a cat 2, and might go up to a cat 4 or 5, gulp. It's been a sporadically rainy, but always grey day here, albeit many businesses in South Beach are open as usual. I didn't try to venture out though -- being rather in a funk about stuff. I was even going to attempt an interesting blog piece on Conspiracy Theories, but I think that'll have to wait for now. Blogger.com is acting up, and gave me a 150-150 error message. Best not compose a long post, just to have it "eaten" by the vagaries of blogspot. This is the last Hurricane Rita update. At least, for us in Florida. God help the people up in Galveston and environs...


  • I look forward to your AfterMidnight post Victoria as FPL better keep our power going as we should not feel any hurricane winds here in Miami!

    Pero, por si acaso, prende una velita.....

    By Blogger Jose Aguirre, at Mon Sep 19, 08:45:00 pm GMT-4  

  • Why have all the recent storms had female names? I thought it alternated male/female. Katrina, Ophelia, Rita...

    By Blogger lindsey, at Mon Sep 19, 11:04:00 pm GMT-4  

  • Lindsey, they still alternate the names, but Lee, Nate and Phillippe never impacted us this year the way the females have!

    Victoria, enjoyed your midnight update, particularly the part about perspiring naked...

    By Blogger Jose Aguirre, at Tue Sep 20, 12:14:00 am GMT-4  

  • Why have all the recent storms had female names? I thought it alternated male/female. Katrina, Ophelia, Rita...

    When I read your post, Lindsey, I was like, "Oh yeah, good point; how about the lads' names?".

    But then I forgot that the male names were INDEED there, as Jose pointed out just now -- but, e.g., Philippe who is "around" as we speak, and other male-named storms haven't impacted us this season.

    Bizarrely, after Hurricane Andrew, lots of kids born during the storm got named Andrew in its honour!

    That sounds so wrong. It's like naming your kid Kim Jong-Il after he dumps you in some Pyongyang prison...

    I didn't hear any kids born during Katrina being named that though. Huh.


    By Blogger vbspurs, at Tue Sep 20, 12:23:00 am GMT-4  

  • oria, enjoyed your midnight update, particularly the part about perspiring naked...

    A smart writer knows what their readers want, capiche? ;)

    Buenas noches, Jose! No te olvides de apagar la velita de San Lazaro. Ya mi de Santa Barbara del Navarro esta out!

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Tue Sep 20, 12:30:00 am GMT-4  

  • Victoria, one game got better! The Redskins came back with two long touchdowns at the end of the game and won 14 to 13!!!!

    By Blogger Jose Aguirre, at Tue Sep 20, 12:44:00 am GMT-4  

  • Fortunately in Miami we mostly got rain and some wind, never lost my electricity. Texas may not be this lucky with Rita. Let's hope it does not get much stronger.

    By Blogger Jose Aguirre, at Wed Sep 21, 01:34:00 am GMT-4  

  • Fortunately in Miami we mostly got rain and some wind, never lost my electricity.

    And I'm happy you and I didn't, Jose.

    As I told my mother, I can take any privation, as long as I have my power...sucks to sleep at night at 8 PM because you're so bored and it's so dark in your home.

    I'm glad you are okay, Jose. :)

    Texas may not be this lucky with Rita. Let's hope it does not get much stronger.

    I tell you, it makes me sick just thinking of what those people will have to go through.

    She's already a HIGH cat 4. *gulp*

    One can only pray for them to be spared the worst...


    By Blogger vbspurs, at Wed Sep 21, 12:30:00 pm GMT-4  

  • They apparently only have 4 names left (out of 21) this year: Stan, Tammy, Vince and Wilma. The 5th hurricane would have to start with the greek alphabet (alpha).

    By Blogger Renato, at Wed Sep 21, 12:32:00 pm GMT-4  

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