Tag Archives: water

Grasp

“I really do love you, Janie.”

Heath looked so sad.

Janie managed to lift her yes; the migraine having magically disappeared.  The light from the floor lamp beside her normally would have reignited the pain.  But, she thought, the wine must have already started working its own magic – along with whatever Heath had put into it.

He stood a few feet in front of her; bare-chested and holding…something in his left hand.  She couldn’t make out exactly what it was.  And she didn’t care.  She couldn’t help but salivate over his rocky torso and recall how much she cared about him.  How things had seemed so perfect all this time.  If college was supposed to be a coming-of-age/adventure/find-your-true-identity, Janie had achieved a perfect score.

And now, it had come to this.  These things weren’t supposed to happen.  In a perfect universe.  If such a place existed.  In this universe.

His lips trembled – the way they did when he first asked her out.  The way they did when he asked her to marry him.  So…what was he going to ask her now?  “I’m sorry,” he muttered.

She saw his eyes glance to the wine glass she held in her left hand.  And unexpectedly let go.

It tumbled to the floor.

“Sorry,” she said.  “Sorry about…what?”

“I love you.  But…”

She tried to lean forward, yet her body seemed paralyzed.  The lines in Heath’s torso began to crisscross.  “What?” she spit out.

“I can’t go on like this.”

“Like what?”

“I’m sorry it came to…this.”

The last thing she heard.  Her head knocked to the right, and her body slumped.

A few spots of wine dotted the chair where she sat.

Heath took a deep breath.  “Oh, God.  Forgive me.”

She was heavier than he thought.  He pulled her limp body off the chair and into the kitchen.

Getting her into the boat along the pier was even more difficult.  He moved only by feel and by moonlight.  The blue-black darkness hid enough, he felt.  Lewisville Lake was a long 20-something miles away from the condo.  A trash dumpster would have been closer…but too obvious.

So he chose the lake.

The flavor of the alga-laden water swaddled his throat.  Heavy, heavy.

He grinned.  They both liked the lake.  They and all of their friends.  How many good times did they have out here?  Memorial Days, Fourth of July, Labor Days…many summer days.  Just about any weekend they felt like coming out here.  Just about any time they felt good about…something.  Or didn’t feel good.  The lake was always a refuge; always a place to escape from whatever.

That odor of the water…heavy, heavy…like Janie’s body.

Even getting the inflatable boat out of the garage had been a chore.  Everything had become so difficult.

He had shrouded her in an old burlap bag and hoisted her into the boat.  Actually a giant…raft?  Seemed like it.  An oversized pool toy colored blue and green.  Thick material.  It wobbled…but made little noise as he slipped it into the water.

No moon.  Clouds covered it.

The water undulated quietly.  The mossy scent had become strong, almost too strong.

What great times they had out here.

How had it come to this?

Despite the coolness of the night air, sweat coated his bare torso.  His cargo shorts were also damp with moisture.  He paddled out as far from shore as he could, using the little rubber oar that came with this glorified pool accoutrement.

He finally stopped.

And breathed.

Strong water smell.

Without looking he grabbed the end of the thick rope laying beside him.  The rest was already wrapped around…the bag.  “I’m sorry,” he muttered.

Rolling her over the rounded edge of the boat almost tipped the entire thing over.  The sound of her form hitting the water made the loudest noise in that serene night.

The rest of that rope quickly uncoiled itself from its spot beside Heath’s foot…before the last few inches wrapped around his ankle…and knocked him off balance.

He fell into the water with an even louder splash.

The boat tipped upwards onto its side before smacking back down into place.

A whirlpool sprung up where Heath entered the water.

And, as Janie’s burlap-clad body sank into the lake, Heath didn’t see – he couldn’t see – her hand poking through the bag…grasping the rope.

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Tweet of the Week – February 20, 2021

Beto O’Rourke

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“Get a Rope” Quotes of the Week – February 20, 2021

“Texans would be without electricity for longer than three days to keep the federal government out of their business.”

Rick Perry, Texas Governor 2001-2015, on the Texas ice storm

Downtown Colorado City, Texas

“No one owes you or your family anything; nor is it the local governments responsibility to support you during trying times like this!  Sink or swim, it’s your choice! … Only the strong will survive and the week will perish.”

Tim Boyd, former Mayor of Colorado City, Texas, on the Texas ice storm

Boyd resigned his position shortly after he made this comment.

“Get a Rope”

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Best Quotes of the Week – February 20, 2021

“This is what you get when people who don’t believe in government are running your government. . . . They’d like to spend more time on Hannity talking about the Green New Deal and wind turbines than they would in trying to help those who desperately need it right now.”

Beto O’Rourke, on this week’s ice storms in Texas

“Just put it in people’s arms.  We don’t want any doses to go to waste. Period.”

Dr. Hasan Gokal, a Houston doctor with the Harris County Public Health Department who was charged with stealing ten doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine for rushing to administer them before expiration

“It’s essentially a question of how much insurance you want to buy.  What makes this problem even harder is that we’re now in a world where, especially with climate change, the past is no longer a good guide to the future.  We have to get much better at preparing for the unexpected.”

Jesse Jenkins, an energy systems engineer at Princeton University, on the Texas ice storm crisis

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Powered Down

The Texas state capital building in Austin

The memo was clear.  Everyone should make a concerted effort to get into the office, no matter what the weather is like.  That included winter storms.  It was the mid-1990s, and the manager of the department where I worked in a bank in downtown Dallas insisted that business was paramount.  This was seemingly light years before the Internet and telecommuting became dependable and functional.  And every time ice and snow paralyzed the Dallas / Fort Worth metropolitan area I managed to make it into work.  One week day I awoke to sleet falling outside of my apartment bedroom window; it was about 4 in the morning.  I knew the weather would only worsen, so I shut off my alarm clock and readied for work.  Travel time from my far North Dallas abode into downtown took almost 2 hours by navigating ice-laden streets.  When I arrived just before 8 a.m., I literally had to turn on the lights in the department.

When I went to work for an engineering company shortly after the turn of the century, I ended up back in downtown Dallas, laboring on a contract for a government agency.  I learned quickly the federal outfit had a phobia of snow and ice.  They’d literally shut down when snow began descending upon the city.  As contractors, my colleagues and I had to vacate the premises as well.  One afternoon a monstrous rainstorm attacked, and – in a faux frenzy – I asked loudly if we had to leave the building.  Rain, I declared, was just liquid snow.  No such luck.  We had to continue laboring over our strained keyboards.  Everyone laughed.

Last weekend Winter Storm Uri catapulted into North America from the Pacific, generating ice storms that blanketed the state of Texas this week and inducing an even more paralyzing effect: our power grid shut down.  Literally millions of people have lived without power (and in some cases, without water) since this past weekend.  As of this moment, most homes have their power back.  But a lack of water is now the problem.  Meanwhile, the number of deaths in Texas related to the event has risenDallas-Fort Worth International Airport led the world in the number of flight cancellations this week.

This has been a cataclysm of unimaginable proportions.  I have experienced a slew of serious weather events and witnessed plenty of incidents of government incompetence, but I have NEVER seen anything like this!

What has occurred here in Texas this week is a prime example of the ineptness of conservative ideology and intense deregulation.  Texas is an energy island; producing its own energy and relying upon no one else.  The exception is far West Texas, where El Paso and its immediate surrounding communities experienced the same weather event, yet had no power outages.  That strong sense of independence and individual reliability looks great in political campaigns, but doesn’t always turn out well in real life.  Since the mid-1990s, Texas has had the habit of electing the biggest morons to public office.  And they’ve come to dominate state government.  Texas conservatives have done more to protect gun rights than basic human rights.

Now many of those same conservatives who always espouse the concept of personal responsibility are pointing their gnarly fingers at everyone and everything except themselves and their own disjointed attitudes.  Even though President Joe Biden approved emergency relief for Texas, some Republicans are accusing him of indifference.  They somehow missed Ted Cruz running off to Cancun, México this week because his kids wanted to go.  Governor Greg Abbott has blamed green energy and the Green New Deal for the crisis.  Green energy, however, only makes up about 10% of energy sources in Texas, and the Green New Deal hasn’t even gone into effect yet.  But they’re liberal programs, so of course, Republicans consider them demonic and will trash their mere presence whenever they get the chance.  Abbott also blames the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) for mishandling the event, but still hasn’t looked in the mirror.

A ceiling fan in a Dallas apartment building sprouted icicles.

This debacle points to the vulnerability of modern societies that have come to rely upon optic fibers and wires; a weakness that would both appall and humor our hardy ancestors.  In March of 1888, a massive winter storm assaulted the Northeastern U.S., downing power lines and disabling even modest commutes in the region’s largest cities.  People in rural areas, however, lived through the storm and its effects without much trouble.  They were accustomed to such weather anyway and prepared for it.

Preparedness – the word of 2021.

Consider this irony.  Earlier on Thursday, the 18th, NASA was able to land a vehicle on Mars.  The endeavor cost millions of dollars and is an epic triumph in the name of science and technology.  But we can’t get power and water to millions of human beings here in Texas – on planet Earth – for several days.

That’s not just sad; it’s unbelievably outrageous.

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December 2020 Countdown – December 29!

“If there is no struggle, there is no progress.  Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning.  They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters.”

Frederick Douglass

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Waving

Water is fascinating.  Essential, indeed, yet compelling in how it moves and how we humans interact with it.  Artists, therefore, can never conjure enough means to display water, but each attempt is mind-boggling.

Recently, Design You Trust, a digital media company, installed a massive anamorphic illusion entitled “Wave” above a South Korean urban area.  Spanning 80.1 x 20.1 meters, the display appears to be an aquarium with water sloshing repeatedly against its “sides”.

Staring at it for any length of time may make some people queasy.  But, in the midst of the current political and health crises rampaging across the globe, I feel it invokes a sense of calm and humility; akin to waves crash against a shoreline, rain falling gently in the night, or a river tumbling over rocks.  You know – water.

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Did You Hear the One About the Spider in the Water?

“How did the giant tarantula get to the other side of the lake?”

“It swam!  How else is it supposed to get there?  Levitate?”

“Hey!  What’s that eight-legged monstrosity doing in the water?!”

“The front stroke, you dipshit!”

“Besides water, what do humans and spiders have in common?”

“Not a damn thing!”

“What do you say to a king-sized spider about to jump in the river?”

“Nothing, you moron!  You just get the hell out of there!”

“What did the titanic tarantula say to the trout before eating it?”

“How the hell should I know?!  I don’t get that close to spiders!  Or fish!”

Source.

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