Saturday, September 9, 2017

Florida's turn

"Watch the Weather Channel if you have the time this weekend. History, although tragic, is about to be made. All we can do now is hope and pray for the people in the path of this monster."

Thank you Cuba. You did your job. Thanks to your large, somewhat mountainous landmass, Irma lost a bit of her swagger when she swung by your neighborhood. A 35 mph drop in winds is a big deal. That is the good news - now the bad. There is a big stretch of "bathtub temperature water" before Irma hits the Keys. Irma could use this final leg of her journey to pull herself together, and once again regain some of her lost wind speed.

One of the cable meteorologists said this storm might change Florida. More-so than Donna, Camille, Andrew or Ivan. As usual, Irma did not listen to instructions set forth by the NWS. The western side of Florida was supposed to have been a smidgen safer than the east coast. Now that Irma has gone a bit further west, the Tampa, St. Petersburg area has the target on their backs. 

There is no doubt that Florida will look much different come daybreak on Monday and Tuesday. The damage costs could be staggering. As careful as the Governor of Florida has been (as well as the Mayors of the large Florida cities which will be affected) with safety instructions, there will be casualties. Hopefully not too many. Only a miracle could prevent any deaths.

Why do I think there will be casualties? Because there are always the exceptions to every rule. The 1% who won't, don't, or don't want to pay attention. I remember reading in the Pensacola paper after Camille hit, a group of friends ignored the evacuation orders, got liquor and cards, and decided to have a "hurricane party". I can only imagine their horror in those final minutes when that monster roared on shore with eye wall winds of 200+ mph. That ill advised "hurricane party" proved to be their last. 

One final thought before the storm makes landfall. What a difference a few years make. When Katrina hit New Orleans, it was a perfect example on how dysfunctional government (at all levels) can be. Because of that dysfunction, many died who did not have to. Texas and Florida on the other hand, have been almost "text book". This is the way government (at all levels) is SUPPOSED to work.

Once this is over, there will be a huge and continuing need for supplies to help the people of Houston and Florida. We are a generous people, and I know the country will step up. My only caveat to folks is to watch out for scams. Make sure your know the charity asking for money. Use, or something similar. 

Watch the Weather Channel if you have the time this weekend. History, although tragic, is about to be made. All we can do now is hope and pray for the people in the path of this monster.


  1. The 11 trillion gallons of water that fell on Houston and environs caused 70 known deaths. There are hundreds of thousands of victims. The water stripped the city’s poor of the little they possessed and cost Harris County between $30 and $100 billion in property damage. But it also claimed a collateral victim—the first president of the United States ever to have been elected on a platform of overt climate-change denial; a position that the disaster has now discredited in the eyes of any reasonable American.
    Naturally, one would hope for a public apology, expressions of regret, and frank and humble self-criticism. But for that to happen, for this bull-headed champion of ignorance to repent of his stubbornness and self-interested bad faith, we would have to see, God forbid, a flood on the Potomac high enough to inundate the White House; or a repeat of the Frankenstorm that struck New York five years ago, this time sending flood waters into the lobby of Trump Tower. And, alas, this reckoning could come sooner than later with Mar-a-Lago and Trump’s Florida properties potentially in the line of Hurricane Irma’s wrath—devastating winds and catastrophic flooding may be imminent, this time in Trump’s playground!

    The anxious, but ever-present, David Gjerdingen

    1. Have a cocktail Dave. You sound stressed.

  2. Thanks, I will, while I watch this non-event enfold.
    Florida is certainly the poorest country that ever two people quarreled for, it was the most dreary and pandemonium-like region I ever visited, nothing but barren wastes. It is swampy, low, excessively hot, sickly and repulsive in all its features.” The former president Zachary Taylor, who commanded U.S. troops there for two years, groused that he wouldn’t trade a square foot of Michigan or Ohio for a square mile of Florida. The consensus among the soldiers was that the U.S. should just leave the area to the Indians and the mosquitoes; as one general put it, “I could not wish them all a worse place.” Or as one lieutenant complained: “Millions of money has been expended to gain this most barren, swampy, and good-for-nothing peninsula.”
    Always was, still is.

  3. All this coverage about a big thunderstorm when they should be covering politics!