Rock Me Like A Hurricane

I’ve been through two big storms before: Hurricane Donna in 1960, as a lad of 10 in Norfolk, Virginia; and Hurricane Camille in 1969, both of them so bad-ass that they retired the names. Even though I now lived nowhere near landfall, I was actually in Portugal for Katrina, so was spared as it ravaged the turf where I used to reside: I guess this is one more revolution of the karma wheel, headed straight for me today. More as it gets closer, until we inevitably lose power.

Earlier glimpses so I make sure I don’t forget ’em: Mayor Bloomberg ordered all mass transit to cease at noon today, Saturday; first time in history. (I wonder if, like Standard & Poor’s, he’s overcompensating for a previous institutional gaffe, for him last winter’s blizzard.) NYC airports have essentially shut down, all are permitting only outbound flights, and those only as weather allows. My gym was open this morning, but not the Starbucks on the corner: closed today and Sun. That is deadly serious, and maybe even instructive for folks who aren’t paying attention. The NYTimes, busily building its paid firewall, opened everything regarding the paper’s so-far-exemplary coverage of the impending disaster to anyone who can log in. Classy. Linda sez she’s not at all sure we’ll lose power, but we took all the precautions anyway, even filled our tub with water so we can make the toilets flush without electricity. (We live on the 21st floor, where you need Con Ed’s help to pump the water up and defy gravity, but adding water to the tank and flushing employs Prof. Newton’s discovery just fine. I learned that little trick during the 2003 multi-state blackout.)

6 am Sunday: Power’s still on, but the storm basically just got here. Very heavy wind and rain. One rubber seal in the kitchen window is bad; water was leaking inside until Mr. Fix-It stuffed a towel in the offending corner. Damn, I’m good.

10 am. The center has passed over us, and Irene has been downgraded to a tropical storm. Take that, Irene. Con Ed’s juice still flowing.

6 pm. All that’s left is a little wind. Good night, Irene.

9 am Monday. It’s a beautiful, sunny late summer day. High 80, blue sky, visibility forever. Gorgeous. Reminds me of the weather on 9/11/01.

SOME TIME LATER: But then came…


8 Responses to Rock Me Like A Hurricane

  1. bpartin says:

    You’re a lot closer than I ever want to be. This side of Virginia will get heavy rain and a little wind, but not much more. On the other hand, I was about 100 miles as the crow flies from last week’s earthquake. Maybe the rapturites are right and these are, indeed, the end times? I’m holding out for the rain of frog’s legs.


  2. Ken Houghton says:

    Final Destination 6: survivors of a hurricane all live quiet, normal lives for several years–until the next one(s) get them.

  3. Fozzy says:

    Stay away from the windows, Tom. Even if the view is exciting. Be safe, old friend. It’s 85 and sunny in Nebraskey. We’re off to the Zoo Bar for a going away party for Cid Cidlik (former B-3 player for Little Jimmy Valentine and the Heartmurmurs) and family who are moving to NYC environs next week. If we hear about his gigging in the city we’ll let you know whre to find him. It’ll be worth the trip.

    • Tom Dupree says:

      Foz, we saw one of Jimmy Smith’s last gigs ever at the Iridium (Les Paul’s place). I think he was high. He hit the B-3 and wouldn’t quit. Yet it was ethereal…*that’s exactly where he belonged*, if I’m making any sense. When it was over, I wondered how long he would last. I also wondered when I would ever again hear a B-3 sing so sweetly.

  4. Graham Lewis says:

    As a Camille survivor, I send prayers for you on the 21st floor.

  5. Bill Fisher says:

    I rejoice that all is well with you and Linda. You continue in our thoughts and prayers, Tom. Be well and be careful

  6. Steve Perry says:

    C2? Barely worth taping up the windows. Probably not a good idea to go surfing, but hurricane parties. Audrey, Betsy, Camille, Donna, and Katrina, now those were hurricanes …

    (Easy for me to say up in Oregon …)

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