Pete's Blog

Blackout

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Most of Seattle and Kitsap County (on the east and west sides of Puget Sound, respectively) lost their lights during a ferocious wind storm on Thursday night. My power came back not quite 48 hours later. A lot of folks are still waiting. There are plenty of big trees down and plenty of power lines under those trees. And a mid-December weekend is not the best time to shut down every retail store for miles. Still, not to be a pepster about it, there were some good things about the blackout. Several of my favorite hostesses resolutely went ahead with Christmas parties and, yes, women do look even better by candlelight. The stars were brilliant Friday night without garish electric competition. And the quiet was lovely. You don't realize how much ambient electronic noise there is in the world until all those little hums are forced off. And it was great, if uncharitable fun to watch teenagers try to get by without their many indispensible electronic minders. At first they were panicked at the thought of being unconnected (Stockholm Syndrome?) but after 24 hours the smart ones fell back on their own devices and turned into the kind of sweet, attentive kids their parents keep insisting they are, really. It was good to see the parents proved right.

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