Last week was a strange one in Connecticut. A freak snowstorm last weekend knocked out power to nearly all of the state, putting 2 million people in the dark (and cold).
“Tempers are snapping as fast as the snow-laden branches that brought down power wires across the Northeast last weekend, with close to 300,000 Connecticut customers still in the dark and the state’s biggest utility warning them not to threaten or harass repair crews.
Angry residents left without heat as temperatures drop to near freezing overnight have been lashing out at Connecticut Light & Power: accosting repair crews, making profane criticisms online and suing. In Simsbury, a hard-hit suburban town of about 25,000 residents, National Guard troops deployed to clear debris have been providing security outside a utility office building.”
I know of several fist fights that broke out at gas stations, since with no power, stations that had gas to dispense + electricity to actually pump it into your tank were scarce. “Cut in line and I will cut you”, I guess.
I only got my power back late Thursday, so I spent 5 days with no power. But at no time was I ever tempted to threaten anyone, hit anyone, or do anything besides whinge pitifully. And frankly, I think headlines like this are bullshit: “Third World” power outages plague US homes, businesses.
Yes, it does really suck to not have heat, or lights, or running water. But well over 2 billion people live every day without those little amenities. Take a look at this map about which populations have access to sanitation–which means toilets and, indirectly, clean, safe water to drink. It’s rather a small part of the world, isn’t it?
My New England neighbors go a week without flushing toilets, and they completely loose their shit (ahem) and start talking about a “Third World Country?” I do not think that word means what you think it means.
Afternoon Inquisition Question:
What do you think? Are we spoiled? Is it a fair comparison? Does it matter? What would you do if you didn’t have power (or internets) for a week?