The crabgrass telegraph

1995-09-15-pajama-party.gifNo, I don’t know how Arlo and Janis know tonight is Susan’s spend-the-night party. The crabgrass telegraph, I suppose.1995-09-16-pajama-party.gif

I didn’t make it back yesterday for an update, so I’m including the next two strips in the “Pajama Party” sequence.

I said we’d talk about Hurricane Ike, but I don’t know what to add, really. Millions of people have been affected to varying degrees:  death, flooding, wind damage and power outages, from the barrier islands of Texas into the midwest. Having experienced Katrina’s destruction firsthand, I know what these people are going through.

I don’t want to minimize anyone’s misfortune, and I don’t want to get into a pointless discussion of whose storm was biggest, but, based on things I’ve seen, I was left with an over-arching thought: for thousands, it could have been so much worse. Those weather-service bulletins about “certain death” issued the day before the storm hit the Galveston area were not overwrought. They just happened not to be entirely accurate for most, although they weren’t entirely wrong, either, as they’re finding right now on Bolivar Peninsula.

I know it’s amusing and a little irritating when the tv weather people start hopping around as a storm approaches, high on adrenaline and fascinated by worst-case scenarios. Well, they’re weather people! This is what they live for. Most days, they talk about “showers.” However, Hurricane Ike, like Gustav only ten days before, could have been truly horrific. A few miles to the south and 30 more knots of wind and the 20,000-or-so people who remained on Galveston Island certainly would be dead. Take my word for it. Waves riding on top of a 25-foot storm surge would have swept the island clean. This actually was expected. I went to bed Saturday night heartsick, anticipating it. I’m so glad it didn’t happen.

Help is needed. You easily can give $5 to the Red Cross by text messaging from many cell phones. Here are the details.