Tag Archives: Energy

Weekend Coffee Share – Utilities Edition

We have this awesome lantern with separate parts that can separate or function independently. It saw some use this week...

We have this awesome lantern with separate parts that can separate or function independently. It saw some use this week…

If we were having coffee, I’d surely tell you about the ridiculousness we’ve been dealing with this week. It started last Saturday night. We were getting home from having dinner with family, walked in the door, and heard a boom.

We immediately realized it was an electrical boom because a) the lights wouldn’t turn on (Holly’s discovery), and b) the cats were both in visual range and hadn’t done it (David’s discovery). Because we’d heard it so much, we weren’t sure still if it was just us, until soon after we saw people headed out of their homes to check it out.

So first we noticed wires loose from our house. Something had pulled them and now they were dangling – not just from our house, but actually these and others dangling in the street blocking the intersection (we live at a corner). So the neighborhood started coming out to stop and direct traffic.

The fire department, city, and electric company all made their way here. Somewhere in there was when, in the dark, it was pointed out to me that a tree was down – just down the street from us, right out the window where I’d missed it… It had pulled a lot of the lines out or down. Help on the scene, they turned off the area’s power, and got to work. Starting first with the pole fire that broke out down at the end of the street…

We still had no idea which wires or cables it was that were loose. But somewhere in clearing things up, they cut them. So we had two wires attached to our house, dangling down into a ditch. We had social media updates that they were going to be a few hours just getting power back. We bailed and went to stay with family, so that we weren’t worrying about all of this with the Geek Baby.

Back the next morning, we find the cables are still cut and not replaced. Not hopeful, we nonetheless found we had power, and cable Internet, and everything seemed fine. Our guess was the cut lines were the phone lines, no problem with them not in use… but they needed dealt with.

Come Monday, there were different work crews out working on things, we figured that it was on the list to fix the wires they’d cut. Nonetheless, we called the electric company to confirm that someone would be doing that. I left a voicemail and never heard back…

Apparently sometime in the week while we were out, someone showed up and dealt with it. We talked to neighbors and heard that some folks who didn’t seem to be with any specific utility (so, the city?) showed up and ran new cables, and just tossed them all up for the trees to hold them up. Because that’ll work.

I found all that out Friday morning – when the trash truck, driving on by, yanks the wires loose. Now they have been pulled completely down so that they are only attached via the box on the side of the house. Hanging into the street. We stop a bus from driving through them, and a bored- looking teenager on a bike who was going to run straight into them, and call for help.

The electric company is dispatched to the scene, and it not being electrical, their best plan is to just detach everything that attaches to our house from the pole – and just leave it in the yard. So where a moment before we had Internet still, we then had nothing. All my blogging plans and plans of getting ahead were thrown out the window.

They said call the cable company to come run new lines, and a call to them said they would be back 8-12 this morning. Not liking this answer, our neighbors (it’s a duplex) went to the cable company in person and got them out yesterday afternoon. The wires are stapled appropriately all the way up the side of the house again, and hopefully will survive the week. The guy with the electric company said there were other low lines on our street he didn’t like the look of – hopefully someone deals with those before this all happens again?

One thing I want to add with all of this? No one ever talked to us about what was going on, and with the Geek Baby it was at times hard or dangerous to go ask them. I finally got to talk to someone – the electric company guy yesterday – but otherwise, no word. It’s our house that’s affected, but not our fault or really our cables down, so it’s an awkward position. No one ever came to explain the process that was going to happen, timeline, ask permission, anything. Things just kind of happened. And the call I did make got no answer.

So I’m annoyed, and in all of this most of the utilities in town were involved so I’m kind of annoyed at all of them. But because of that, not sure what to do… though Holly did find a complaint form online with the city. Maybe I’ll cut and paste this text in there…

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that it’s been a long few weeks.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that we have family visiting arriving today, and that I hope that turns things around. That also means we’re going to try doing something a little different next week – hope you like it!

So… how’s your week been? Here I am monopolizing the conversation… Find all the coffee chatter through the linkup on Part-Time Monster!

Science Fiction Today – Everything

EToday we’re going to do something a little different. Some of the reason is because a lot of hot topics start with the letter “E.” The rest of the reason is that we’ve covered a lot of these topics already!

Rather than rehash a topic, I’ll link to the previous posts we have on the topics we had in mind for “E.” So if you’re racing through A to Z posts, today’s like a breather, and you could save this post for later… but otherwise, here are some great posts from the archives!

Clearly we had the letter “E” already covered. You can read these and all our Science Fiction Today posts by clicking this link. And day by day throughout the challenge, that link will grow all the more awesome!


This post is part of the April A to Z Challenge, and also part of our occasional series on Science Fiction Today. You can read an explanation of both here. We are striving to keep these posts short, and know that we have not covered every example or angle – plenty of room for discussion!

Catching Up on Life with the Comparative Geeks

We’ve been busy lately! I’m pleased that we’ve still been writing good posts throughout, but I feel like my mental momentum has stalled out tonight. So if I can’t come up with something else to write I can at least tell you why!

Our state has a rebate program for home energy improvements – so we’ve been having a whole bunch of work done on our house. Most of the work to be done by the experts is done! Which unfortunately leaves the stuff that I’m probably going to have to do myself. Our hope is to have this house work done before the baby comes!

Speaking of, we’re also trying to carve out a baby’s room in our house. We had an office and a guest bedroom, both of which saw plenty of use. Well, the guest bedroom is gone and in its place is now the office… and the office is becoming the baby’s room. Bit by bit.

We’ve recently tackled the largely untouched boxes from our past – things from our childhood, school, college. Collectibles, memorabilia, war gaming, Magic cards, photographs. Geeky things. Books. And OMG the electronics. Cables for miles. So many outdated technologies that seemed like they were worth saving only a few years ago.

So even now I sit with boxes around me, needing some sorting and decisions before they find a new home… well… somewhere around here.

Anybody want some Magic cards?

Science Fiction Today – The Future of Power

We only just finished watching the first season of Revolution the other day, just in time for the new season to start. It raises some great questions about our modern world, and our dependence on electricity and power for just about everything.

This show fits really well with our whole subject of Science Fiction Today, the idea of taking our modern world, and taking it just a little bit into the future. They did it by adding in one element, or rather subtracting one – all the power. They went a little over-the-top, killing all power, even from independent generators or batteries, but then they actually did a pretty good job of explaining why. I’m happy to have watched the show to find out the explanation, and I recommend the show to you – check it out!

Since I am recommending Revolution, I am going to avoid spoilers, and talk more generally about our future in Power – will we have it, will we not? What does our future look like in either case?

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