Just last week I was watching an old episode of Connections with James Burke. He was talking about the technology trap that we humans have set for ourselves. The Northeast Blackout of 1965 is a good example of what happens when we, who have become dependent upon technology, suddenly experience a snag. Wikipedia article, 'Over 30 million people and 80,000 square miles were left without electricity for up to 12 hours.'
On Tuesday evening, we saw by the radar map on weatherbug.com, that we were under a tornado warning and that at least a severe thunderstorm was headed our way. We took the dogs to the basement, then waited out the storm there. A couple unwanted box elder trees, along with lots of little branches and leaves were strewn about the yard, there was a torrential downpour, and then about 7:30 the power suddenly went out.
No flushing toilets. (We have our own well and the water pump runs on electricity of course).
The storm eventually passed (the electricity was still out) and we went back upstairs, lit the oil lamps, opened the windows so the hot breeze could come in, and waited until it was time to go to bed. It was so deathly silent that I couldn't get to sleep. At 1:30 I moved to a different bedroom. I petted the cats. I waited for morning.
At 2:30 a light flashed across the wall of the upstairs bedroom where I was lying. I heard the low, soft growl of a diesel engine. Someone was turning around in our driveway. I figured the linemen were out working on our transformer.
For the next hour, Glen Campbell was in my brain whining, 'I am a Lineman for the County.' I tried to figure out why he was a lineman for the county and not for the electric company. I guessed that 'electric company' had too many syllables.
At 3:30 AM, there was suddenly light and air conditioning! We got up, closed the windows. and waited for the house to cool off. It was wonderful!
That power outage was only 8 hours, and most of them were during the night.
As appealing as it is to wear long, black dresses and stockings (and bonnets) on a sweltering summer day, I've decided not to become Amish after all. Then again, the technology they have to worry about is a faulty hitch on their buggy.
The power outage was a good time to reflect upon this 'technology trap' that James Burke was talking about. It's true. We are so dependent upon technology and never expect to have to do without it.
I don't know how long the people of Joplin, MO were without power, but imagine if the power went out next week and we didn't know when it would return. Do we know how to survive? What are some things we need to learn to do? What are some things we need to keep on hand for emergencies? I was glad I'd just filled a two-liter bottle with water, for the first thing that happens when we have a power outage is that I get thirsty.
If we're so smart, why have we set this trap for ourselves?
Technology is wonderful, but can we survive without it?
What do you think?
P.S. I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that our youngest son can't survive without Facebook or texting, let alone electricity! Just sayin.' He might say that his mother can't survive without blogging. Then again, I suspect he's not even aware of the fact that I have a blog.
P.S. Please tell Glen Campbell to get out of my brain. ♫