Night is dark

Really dark. You just can’t believe how vastly deeply inkly dark it is. I mean you may think it’s awfully dark in your basement when you turn out the lights and put blankets over the window, but that’s just twinkles compared to how dark it is when the power goes out. For your whole neighborhood.

It was a very eerie feeling – I mean, I was already tired from staying up to late finishing a half-dozen things from the day. But suddenly there’s this clunking sound, and something’s not right, and then silence. There was that half-second where my brain was telling me everything’s fine – I mean, I’m sitting here reading a webpage, and I can still read it on my laptop. And the light going out was probably cause it’s on a timer…

Oh, wait, the fishtank is off too, and it’s suddenly reeeealy dark. Look out the window – yup, everyone on my street, and the next street over, in both directions – no lights. Then I had to stumble around to find my cell phone to call the power company. (Yes, I am one of those people who calls in the power outages.) Luckily, I really like flashlights, so once I turned a couple on, it was kinda fun.

Of course, it’s not really that dark outside. Anyone who lives even vaguely close to the metro area in a developed country knows you can never find actual blackness outdoors anymore. The glow from Boston was still plenty to see my way around outside. I wonder: how much more light pollution do we have today versus 20 or 30 years ago? Besides just population density, are we overall doing better or worse at excess lights in the sky these days? I can’t tell if the fondness of seeing the stars long ago is just happy memories from childhood, or if there’s a real difference in how many are visible in the night sky now.

Murphy came through, as he often does; the power turned on just as I was completing the automated “report your location out” call. Sigh. I didn’t even get the good doobie feeling for getting to report it.

More than 80’s calories

Two amusing items caught my eye today (well, more than two, but we’ll see how many I can still type straight!)

If you were born before a certain age, then you’ll remember this cartoony yet serious video. Actually, if you’re old enough to read this blog, you probably remember the video; it’s really a function of age across a narrow range that determines if you think of it fondly or with annoyance. Someone’s done a wonderful job of literalistically rewriting the lyrics. Very nice. HT 2 LizR.

Speaking of 80 calories, there are more than 5 times that many calories in a Starbuck’s pumpkin scone – at least in some metro areas. A dear friend who writes a blog about food – well, really “about the cool and interesting people I meet. It’s not really a food blog at all, in fact.” Well he has an interesting little quiz going on about relative calories. Thank goodness I guessed correctly, even before doing my research on teh internetz. Vote your stomach – or your wallet, I suppose – and catch up on the New York food industry scene.

Hey! I just had a brilliant idea! We can snap the stock market out of this whole bad debt crisis and simultaneously solve world hunger! Just buy a few cases of Starbucks baked goods – raising their stock price, and cheering up countless securities traders the world over – and ship them to the hungry. That’ll give a boost to transportation stocks too, and we know it’ll only take a couple of scones per person to make a huge dent in anyone’s calorie deficiency!