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Thursday, February 3, 2011

Texas Goes Snowpocolypse Crazy!!

This is absolutely INSANE!!!  It's supposedly been lingering around freezing for about 3 days now, and it does feel a tad colder than usual, but Nog's water bowl is not even frozen, so clearly it is not freezing outside.  Tonight, there is a "chance" that we could get 1-2 inches of snow or sleet, or even more likely,if anything, freezing rain.  Yet, here in Houston,  we Houstonian's are doing the thing we love to do best: "hunkering down"! We get plenty of practice hunkering in the summertime, when hurricanes threaten or tornadoes form, and now we get to practice winter hunkering, a skill unknown to most Houstonians!!

It's been apeshit crazy!  Because the power generating plants were built without insulated pipes (because insulating pipes is SOOOO expensive!), water pipes burst and shut plants down, sending the grid into panic mode.  Instead of letting the grid careen out of control like a ship with no wheels, the brain trust at ERCOT instigated rolling blackouts to reduce stress on the grid.  America's Largest Department Store was asked to shut down escalators, air handlers, and accent lighting to reduce consumption.  When word came out that electricity was being acquired from Mexico to prop up the grid, rumors that it wasn't "clean power" with reliable voltage caused people to panic even further.  Of course, modern children can't be expected to sit in a classroom with no climate control, so schools were closed, causing parents to leave work early, blah, blah, blah.  

Now, the Mayor has pretty much asked the city to shut itself down tomorrow.  "Stay off the roads", we're told. "There might be ice!"  "Non essential personnel should stay put."  "Drip your faucets so your pipes won't burst".  So ridiculous!  IF ( and that's a big "if") we get snow or ice, the chances of any of it sticking are slim to none.  95% of the homes around here are built on slab foundations, so the pipes can't freeze or burst.  Yet, these idiots will run their water all night long,  draining pressure from the public water system to the extent that it can't be pressurized. That part's almost a given, so like a good citizen, Miss G has filled her bathtubs with water so she can flush the commodes tomorrow.  She's got the furnace on, so she's not worried about pipes freezing, but she got to thinking that if we do get freezing rain, falling branches will break the power lines, so she went to Lowes to get some propane canisters for her little gas heater. Miss G figures if she has propane on hand, she'll wake up tomorrow and all will be normal. However,  if she doesn't have any propane, Snowmaggedon 2011 will render Chez G an icebox for days on end. So, out she goes to hedge her bets.

OMG!  Lowes looks like it's been looted by rioting Egyptians!  There's a big sign on the door written in magic marker that says "Sorry- no more electric heaters!" There's not a battery or flashlight to be found in the place!  And there are pallets of bottled water up and down the aisles- Miss Ginger presumes to aid those who may have forgotten to fill their bathtubs!

As of now,  Miss G expects to get up and go to work tomorrow. However, there are some pretty treacherous bridges and overpasses between her and tomorrow's site, so if Snowmaggedon comes, she's staying home with the kitties!  The mayor told her to!


David Dust said...

Good Lord, it sounds like people have lost their damn minds!

I bet your Governor has a plan to alleviate the upcoming storm through tax cuts or seceding from the Union. That outta work!

Hang in there honey. You can always come up here and stay at the DustBunny=Astoria Hotel.


Anonymous said...

You crack me up-I agree it's like a blizzard is about to hit us. It amazes me how people panic. It's like hurricane season at Sam's-I have seen a whole cart of beer and chips, a few batteries and a little water. I bet the liquor stores were just as busy as Lowe's.

Wonder Man said...

That's some madness for you

Kailyn said...

The insurance broker we use at my job is based in Houston. Today I received an email from them saying that they would be leaving early today and not returning until Monday. Usually I only get these kinds of emails from them during hurricane season so I knew that things were perhaps a bit off in the weather.

Thanks for explaining it all. I thought they had completely lost their minds.

mrs. miss alaineus said...

oh man. i just shake my head as we had our own version of it up here and some of the markets jacked up milk and gas prices to take advantage of the panic caused by 18 inch snow predictions (which were off by about 10-8 inches in most places). be safe. be warm. make a kitteh blanket and settle in!


Bob said...

Sounds a lot like the good old Miami days, when everything shuts down and stoires are out of everything.
Only, in Miami it happened AFTER the event, because in Miami no one prepares for anything.

Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

It is amazing how Houston can handle hurricanes, but a threat of snow really scares peeps :o)


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