A window into the life of a professional geek, wife and mother (and nonni), stitcher/designer, bibliophile, old-school gamer, and whatever other roles she finds herself in.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

No lights no phone no motorcars....

With hurricane season here, and loss of service always a possibility during any storm, a Tuesday Twosome from a while ago asks how I'd react..

Doing without...
1. If the cable/dish is out of service, what is your reaction and why?
Losing television capability doesn't bother me much. I don't watch very much television, and shows will usually re-air. And we do have tapes and DVDs that we could watch (I still want to do a LotR extended edition marathon one of these days...)

Losing the cable modem, on the other hand, is a greater annoyance. We've gotten used to having high-speed Internet, and since I update my parish's website weekly, having 'net access is certainly important. I do have a copy on my computer at home, though, so I can always copy the updates to my thumbdrive and upload them from elsewhere if I lose access from home. If the whole area has lost service, there are certainly bigger problems than my church website being a week out of date.

2. If the electricity is out of service, what is your reaction and why?
It would depend on the time of both day and year. Losing power in Florida in the summer is absolutely miserable - no power means no air conditioning, and I am a colossal heat wuss. Lack of power also makes it difficult to pursue my hobbies of reading or stitching when there's not light outside to use. In what passes for winter here when there's less heat and bugs, it's less of an issue.

As everyone in Florida can probably attest after last year, extended power outages bring their own problems such as food spoilage and lack of clean clothing (and water, for people who have electric-driven wells), not to mention traffic and other logistics issues on the civic front.

3. If the phone service is out of service, what is your reaction and why?
Losing phone service at home is a minor annoyance. I'm not a big telephone talker.

4. If your cell phone is out of service, what is your reaction and why?
Losing cell is also just a minor annoyance. I have a cell that I keep with me most of the time, primarily so I can be reached by family or school/daycare if need be, or to reach someone in case of emergency.

5. How dependent on a scale from 1 to 5 (5 being extremely dependent) are you on the four items/services that were just mentioned and do you think it is a good or bad thing?
In general, I'd have to say:
Cable (TV): 1
Cable (Internet): 3
Electricity: 5
Phone: 1
Cell: 2
(Of course, particular situations may change the odds somewhat. If I'm stranded on a deserted highway, lack of cell phone would be a serious problem.)

Having lost all four services simultaneously during Hurricane Jeanne, I certainly missed electricity the most, by far. I didn't miss the others hardly at all, other than that losing all three meant that we were unable to contact out-of-state family to let them know we were okay. But we made do, and other than the heat it wasn't unbearable.

As for good or bad... I think that not being very dependent on TV and phone is certainly a good thing. I'm certainly very dependent on electricity (and perhaps a bit too much so on A/C), but with my profession, electricity is indispensible. I honestly don't know what field I'd be in if not computers.

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