>Hurricane Survival Kit

>Hello. Please note—I am not in any way experienced with hurricanes. Almost every single person who lives on the island has more experience than me and I am certain that they all have hints and tricks better and perhaps more applicable than mine. That said I am going to keep ya’ll updated on what I have been doing to make my world a little more pleasant during inclement weather.

Flush Water
There is nothing as decadent as indoor plumbing. During hurricane season I keep an old cat litter bucket (cleaned and approx. 5 gallons) filled with water (and a little bleach). The cat litter bucket has a lid which I keep closed to prevent mosquitoes from enjoying a breeding ground. Then, when a flush is needed, I have that ability. It’s awesome.

Face Wipes
Okay, I know most of you have heard of the whole baby wipe thing. Those are fine but if you really want to “treat” yourself buy some fancy no water needed face washing towelettes. I have some Olay ones and I love them. They actually made me feel clean before bed. I can’t recommend anything more.

Wash Yer Dang Dishes
Very little is as gross as icky dishwater. Now, if you have it and don’t have electricity or water for a few days it gets really manky. So, when you know a storm is coming make sure to wash all your dishes and put them away before the storm. Then use environmentally unfriendly disposable products during the storm. Water is way too precious to do anything else.

Soapy Water & Rinse Bucket
I use my empty dish washing sink bucket thing and half fill it with sudsy water. This allows me to wash my hands during the storm and after by dunking and swishing. I rinse my hands in a bucket with clean water before drying. This may sound stupid, but it is amazing how often I needed this.

Oil Candles & Lantern
Light is amazing. Sure, I need a headlamp to read and all that but just by illuminating an area it can make you feel less alone. There is a reason everyone gathers at campfires…it feels homey. Just remember all your basic fire safety skills.

Buckets, Buckets, and more Buckets
You may have noticed that I use a lot of buckets—get more of them. Somewhere in your house is going to leak. You may need to soak something in bleach, you may need to dip water out of your cistern, just get lots of buckets. Trust me. I think I have 8 bucket-type objects, and yes, I have used them all.

Drinking Water
A lot of potable water is essential. Seriously. The estimate is 1 gallon per person per day. Pets are a minimum of ½ gallon per pet a day. Those estimates are NOT for people like me and my pets. My big dogs need a gallon per day as well. So, I have about 30 gallons before any hurricane. So far so good.

Insect Repellant/Raid/Boric Acid
The little buggers EXPLODE after a storm. I had an ant infestation on my stove within 1 day following inclement weather. A sprinkling of Borax and they were gone. J Also, mosquitoes are just evil—they will eat you alive after a storm. I keep a can of Off by the bed and in the kitchen. I rarely use Raid—but it isn’t bad to keep on hand.

If there is no power or phone service after a hurricane, there is no way to get money and you can’t pay with a credit card/debit card. So, yeah, take out as much cash as you can prior to a storm. One person I know puts all ones and fives he gets in change in a jar starting June 1st and uses that as his Hurricane Fund. It’s a pretty good idea.

Battery Operated Fan
I don’t have one; but I sure have wished for one for the last few days with no power! I have great hopes of getting one someday. 🙂

Rubbermaid Roughneck Containers
These things are great. Keep a few changes of clothes in one of them so that you have some dry clean clothes to wear. Sometimes everything gets wet.


>Is there anything in this world less motivating than motivational posters? I didn’t think so either. I’ve never been a fan of such dripping obvious schlock. However, I’d never really been subjected to them either. The other day something horrible happened. The local admin brought in a framed copy of some motivational poster for us to put in our office. *blink* really? Us? Me and the officemate (aka Sarcasmo) who go out of our way to write buzzwords in a mocking manner on the whiteboard in our office (synergy, cooperation, paradigm shift, strategery…wait, that ain’t one—you get the idea)?
The dark horror was prevalent in our office. We didn’t want it.
It sat on a chair…looking at us.
Okay, I’m being a wee bit melodramatic; but it was annoying. So we zipped down the hallway and crowded into our boss’ office doorway and said “do we have to?” to which he said, “Nope”. The offending poster was taken away…they still haunt the hallways though. If a poster was wall I needed to become motivated…

Should anyone wish to giggle you can Google “demotivators” and see what I wish was all over my walls.


>…a minor rant (email)

>A minor rant…

So, if any of you out there have email; and I know most of you do; please remember to PUT YOUR FLIPPIN’ PHONE NUMBER IN THE SIGNATURE! Yes, I am well aware that people are getting outlandish with the signature lines, for example:

Heather Blah Blah Blah, Whooopie dooooo title.
Company address
Company address
Company website
Phone number
Cell number
Personal website
Annoying biblical sentence or save the earth message all about your journey and your commitment to blah blah blah blah.

Don’t. Be. That. Person!!!
However, if you send me a flippin’ email asking me to call you and you don’t at least have a stupid phone number at the bottom of the email it makes me insane. Then there is the searching for the number…~sigh~

So, my advice to anyone who cares enough to read this stupid posting. On outgoing messages have your name, phone number(s) and maybe your email (although if you are sending an email don’t we already have that?). On reply messages at least have your name and phone number—even just your office line.

What are we—cave dwellers? Come on! J J J

Okay, rant over. J

>an essay on feminism (with no good answers)

>An essay on feminisim…(with no concrete answers)

I am a feminist. I truly believe women have the right to be whatever they want to be whether that be a housewife, CEO, garbage collector, prostitute, doctor, you get the idea—whatever they want to be.

I recall an “anti-feminist” movement back when I was in college; women afraid to declare that they were feminist because they really didn’t understand what being a feminist meant.

And there is the crux of my problem—do I know what feminism means? I have a tendency to get by in this world using my charisma as opposed to my education. I’ve been known to utilize every trick in the book from blatant flirtation to aggressive behavior to being more like a fraternity brother than a girl to get sampling done and or to get people to listen. It’s never thought out; I just sort of passively read people and then behave the way I intuit will get me what I need.

Some people are HARD for me to read. My current boss is impossible for me to read and in some ways for me that is ideal. It forces me to be a better employee and a better scientist. But holy hell is it frustrating to have someone I can’t read to report to. It causes me to be nervous every single time I have to interact with him.

So, speaking of my current working situation—I think the other day I was treated to a little gender discrimination. It shocked the living crap right out of me. It was assumed I couldn’t do something because I am a girl. It was unexpected and made me uncomfortable.

Men and women are very different – physically, emotionally, and chemically. Does that mean one is naturally better as some things than others—probably. Does that mean we have to conform to conventional gender roles—nope.

Do I have any answers?—nope. I just find myself contemplating these things sometimes.


>My First Hurricane

>So, yeah. We got brushed by Hurricane Earl. It was nowhere near as bad as I thought it would be; I guess growing up in Michigan/Ohio has prepared me pretty darn well for inclement weather. Basically, all the hurricane felt like was some really high winds and a lot of rain. The preparations before the hurricane though—that nearly killed me. For some unbeknownst reason I thought I could lift a large cooler filled with 5 bags of ice with one arm while carrying a backpack and dragging a garbage can. It turns out I can—but I shouldn’t. Or so the pulled muscle in my lower left back keeps telling me, loudly, with much angst. Many trips to the dump, bleaching out my garbage can, moved the grills indoors, chained down some outdoor tools. Lots of chores to do on a Sunday. J

During the hurricane I napped. I did. Me, the dogs, and occasionally a sopping wet cat were snuggled on the bed and we napped. What else was there to do? It was rather peaceful. I read a book, napped a little, read some more, napped some more. Got fancy and made a tuna melt, read some more, napped some more.

There were no tree limbs in my way into work the next morning. Here we are on Wednesday and I still have no power but I prepared for that. It should hopefully be up by today (fingers crossed).

The one thing I noticed about the Hurricane is that it was long. Picture a really bad thunderstorm that goes on for about a day letting up only intermittently. I had a hard time figuring out if it was “over” or not.

Well, made it through my first one. It was less exciting that I had prepared for however more preparation is not a bad thing. Also, the aftermath (since we were just brushed) has not been nearly so bad.