Monday, June 22, 2009

We're Buying a Generator

I'm not a scientist. I don't even play one on TV. I did, however, have a chemistry set when I was a kid. That should count for something, right?

Okay, maybe not. So all I have to go by is my observations. We're on schedule to have the driest June ever recorded in Houston. The record was set in 2005, but we're going to break it by several days. In fact, the weather-guessers are saying that we might not have any rain at all in the month of June this year.

When we moved to Alvin in 1983, I was amazed that I didn't have to water the lawn. In Brownwood, I watered two or three times a week, but in Alvin it seemed to rain all the time. Eventually my old sprinklers disappeared or were tossed out. I didn't need them. Five or six years ago, I noticed that it wasn't raining much. I went out and bought some sprinklers. Now, even the sprinklers aren't going to help much. When it's over 95 degrees for day after day (and over 98 for a lot of those), it's too late for sprinkling.

And then there are the hurricanes. We moved here the week that Alicia arrived on shore. After that, it was over 20 years before we had to worry about another hurricane. For the last few years, we've worried about them a lot, and another one's come on shore here. We've been lucky compared to people on other parts of the Gulf Coast.

And what about all the weird weather in the rest of the country? Tornadoes, torrential rains, hailstorms, you name it. Maybe there's no such thing as climate change. Maybe whatever this is, it's just a short-lived phenomenon. I sure hope so, but just in case, we're having a huge natural gas generator installed at our house. We're not going to be without electricity for 11 days again if another storm like Ike comes roaring through.


  1. Anonymous9:26 AM

    Here in the west we've had parallel terrors visit us; the land is drying up and we have frequent forest fires of unimaginable fury. I fear that we've messed with nature to such a degree that she will avenge herself upon us in ways we're only beginning to fathom. I am glad you are giving thought to the evolving catastrophe.

    Richard Wheeler

  2. Yes, but what are you going to do about the locusts?

  3. I have this really big canister of Raid.

  4. Seepy Benton11:08 AM

    We're doomed! Doomed! Of course, I not only produce my own natural gas, but hot air as well. See if that natural gas generator will double as a propane BBQ. If so, then you've got it made!

  5. I've heard that it's cooler in Arizona than it is in Alvin. How can that be, what with all the hot air you're producing?

  6. We had so many dry years, the boaters were worried they would not be able to take their boats out on the lake. In the last few years, all of that has changed. I do believe in globarl warming but I also believe in weather cycles.

  7. Anonymous7:22 PM

    Bill, Alvin may be dry but we're closing in on one of the wettest and coolest Junes on record.

    It feels like it's been raining all month. Wait a minute, it has!


  8. See what I mean about the weird weather? The parts of Texas that are usually dry have had far more rain than we have.

  9. You just missed by a few years the great Alvin flood of 1979. On July 24, 1979, Alvin set the 24-hour record for rainfall in the U.S. - 43 inches in 24 hours.

    See you at ApolloCon!

  10. I bought a genererator about 4 years ago, after an ice-storm left us without power for 4 days.

    I've used it, but never to power anything in the house, so I guess it's good insurance.

  11. I'm considering a natural gas run generator, too. But if Barack rebuilds the electric grid, will we ever need it>