THE RECENT FAILURE OF TEXAS
A first hand account from a resident of Dallas County Texas; People freeze to death, panic shop and has anyone seen Ted Cruz?
As I lay in bed last night in my frigid loft that has a thermostat programmed not to go over 69 degrees Fahrenheit, a random thought struck me, "This must’ve be what the 'y2k' was supposed to have been when like I was a little kid in 1999."
Okay, I’m being a little dramatic. The truth is I just want this shit to melt so that I can finally put the car back on the road (Yes, we did have a dramatic scenario of me having to back up over half-a-mile because I didn't know how to turn off the traction-control, so the vehicle refused to climb up an icy hill. #fail).
As I type away seated at my breakfast nook; the air fryer (a true Godsend) hums in the background as it warms up left over pizza from the only source of food for 5 miles. A bespoke Italian bistro, that charged $11.85 for two personal sized cokes and sprites, continues to capitalize as it fleeces our neighbors during this nightmare that started 72 hours ago.
For the past month, we basked in our California-like weather of clear skies and warm 68-72-degree weather fitting for long walks—when suddenly 72 hours ago the temperature plummeted without much warning to around 10 degrees Fahrenheit.
"It's going to snow!" Siri warned. I rolled my eyes. We know what 'snow' in Texas means. A few icy tears, followed by everything shutting down, while most lay depressed in bed until the flurries clear.
Nonetheless, the shit seemed to be sticking.
As I drove home from a cancelled shift at the office, I took the 'freeway' trying to save a few pennies, despite the recent tragedy of a 100+ plus car pile-up in Fort Worth still being a viable possibility, my condolences for the lives lost.
Inasmuch, there's a culture in Dallas that's akin to Mad Max part-2; as in get the oldest car you can find and drive as fast as you possibly can. Imagine being constantly tailgated or almost run-off the road by a 1992 Toyota Camry that feels comfortable cruising at 95mph in a 70 mph zone. Typical Dallas day. There seems to be a tone deafness to adjusting driving patterns to suit inclimate weather conditions.
Dallas unfortunately, as so I've been told, does not salt the roads (TXDOT says it's "too corrosive”). It sucks that we aren't in the 'salt-belt' right? Here in the bible-belt— climate change is a 'conspiracy'— perhaps now that will change.
24-hours in—A very Hitchcock 'Rear Window' experience occurred to me.
I call them, the 'pink bodies'.
About ten units of lofts across the street keep their blinds open 24-hrs a day, which I was oblivious to until the first 7-hour power outage. That’s when a bright white light shined into my living room from across the street. It blinked and moved frantically back and forth. I flicked on my own cellphone light and shined it back to the source across the street. The person shined their phone again; as some sort of miseducated Morse code to ask whether or not my lights were out too. The entire main street is on the same power grid; so, no shit sherlock. The lady in her two-piece underwear continues to shine her lights, and I close the blinds before this becomes something weird and she feels the liberty to call the police stating that a black man was watching her— “oooohhhh noooooo”; you know how they are in these parts.
When sunrise occurs, the lights are still out; all of these apartments show little to no signs of life; then around 4:55 that evening— without warning—the power clicks on.
Immediately out my window I see a multitude of 'pink bodies', as I have never seen this much semi-nudity outside of a beach before scurrying around open refrigerators. All of the male's seem to be wearing ‘tighty-whities’; and all of the females are wearing bland polyester underwear's skating in their socks to the refrigerator, clearly digging around for left-over's since delivery has gone defunct. This lasts for about an hour and a half before 'zoooommmmm'; that would be the sound of the electricity being yanked out of wherever it was plugged into.
Getting up from the darkened screen of my desktop computer; since all hope of completing my research was gone (i.e. due to a lack of electricity), I peer across the street to see that all of the 'pink bodies' have closed their blinds, probably out of embarrassment. Save one; I can see the interior of a food cabinet that seems to be laced with many different flavors of salad dressing; perhaps it's my eyes. One thing I fathom is that everyone else just 'went back to bed' for another 13-hour snooze in hopes that when they rise things would be so much better.
One thing is for certain, these units retained warmth better than I expected. That’s because no one is actually on the ground floor (because that's where the parking garage is located). So no, we have not been 'freezing' like the rest of the city; of which I have named #Dallaska where reportedly half-done piping and insulations have exploded due to the sharp drop in temperatures that have led to everything flooding, from residential homes to parking garages. The fire department showed up this morning banging on our door asking if we had any leaks, because the penthouse suite above us clearly bit the dust (to the dismay of its sole covid-fearing hikikomori resident; thankfully the answer is 'no'). Needless to mention, the numerous houses that are burning down killing the occupants inside because the chimneys being used were not cleaned out beforehand; or as I fathom like most things in this area; where 'constructed solely for aesthetic purposes'. We also cannot proceed without mentioning all of the new-born deaths that are occurring when a baby literally freezes to death because the infrastructure around here isn't on point. People all around town have taken to Facebook to announce the demise of their pet's; and the local zoo's reporting the freezing deaths of many of its captured apes and lemur's that would've been better off left in Africa (but that's a discussion for another time).
The following morning, I picked up my cell phone and attempted to order groceries on Instacart; it's a shame that the perceptive 'fullness' of my own refrigerator is limited to everything that I don't like, as it requires cooking and with non-consistent electricity that's not the proper investment. Instacart reports back that it'll be able to deliver my groceries sometime late next week. I then turned on the news to see displays of empty racks at Wal-Mart and Aldi's. A neighbor then proceeded to inform me that he "made it all the way" up to Tomb Thumb and the employee's literally 'pushed them out and locked the doors'. My gut feeling tells me that Whole Food's still has a few things to go around, what do you think?
Ultimately; has anyone seen Ted Cruz?
Oh that's right, you all shamed him into returning stateside to suffer with you— but then again you all voted him into office, just like someone else whom you've all loved and admired for years who's done a fine job at unleashing literally disease and famine across the land. Everyone knows when they're doing something that’s wrong, there’s a 'little voice' inside their head, a.k.a. your conscious (if you have one, as this quandary has shown that a good percentage of you don't). However, because of some form of 'willful-blindness', try to interpret something that someone else has literally printed in a book and taken to heart as divine. Make of this what you want, just know because something is published and revered doesn't make it or them true.
As for now, I’m going to go collect snow off my balcony to melt down to wash my hands (it tastes the way that I fathomed, 10w-30 motor oil would taste like), as you guessed it, I haven't had consistent plumbing for 72 hours and of course these hoes are still sending a bill shortly.