Thursday, September 08, 2005


What I love about this nation is that can’t even have a hurricane without fighting about it. On the other hand, I think we can all agree that this patently sucks.

Ophelia is looking a lot like one of last year’s hurricanes. (Frances?... Jeanne?... Yakov...? You know. That one hurricane. With all the wind.) She’s spinning on the axis of her own buttcheeks eighty miles off the coast, creating a great deal of small flying droplets here in The Swamp, Northeastern Sector. I saw the same cloud eighty-seven times today.

The really good news is that all the recent hurricane fun stands to delay the next shuttle launch even further, as the external tanks NASA needed to study are located at the Michoud Assembly Facility, which is in... southern Louisiana. There are rumors flying that the flooding is such that they can't even get to the site to see if the tanks are still there. (Which, come to think of it, would solve a lot of problems in a very efficient fashion.) I don't know what kind of anti-mojo is swirling around America's space program right now, but suffice to say that at this rate I would not be surprised to wake up one morning to find that a gigantic Acme anvil had dropped from the sky over the Kennedy Space Center, squashing the Vehicle Assembly Building like a pie crust.

Four of the five most recent computer models send Ms. Ophelia looping directly back at the Blonde Bachelorette Pad. The fifth predicts a path to: New Orleans.

I’ve previously discussed the hurricane phenomenon of “Screw You, As Opposed to Me”, and under circumstances such as these you almost hate to invoke the principle.

Almost. I bought a box of diapers to donate to an Air Force supply drive for Katrina victims, and let us just say that the best way to fit in at a Wal-Mart is to hunch around the baby food aisle in a bad mood and no wedding ring.

On the other hand, the Ophelia situation has afforded me an excellent opportunity to ascertain the effect of dropping air pressure on college students. I’ve pretty much determined that they continue to be bored at exactly the same rate. They’re just damper.

I can’t say that I've been completely unaffacted, as prior to yesterday’s morning class I committed an Act of Professorial Blondeness so egregious—we shan’t discuss the details here; perhaps it’ll come out during the Oprah interview—that it shook me for the rest of the day. And college students, they’re like horses or any other destructive mammal. They smell fear. My afternoon class was a study in wall-bouncing. I mean, I enjoy a rambunctious discussion, but let’s not fling objects in the general direction of the professor’s ovaries, shall we? It got to the point where I had to bust out my Teacher Voice™ and attempt to restore order with a very firm “You guys. Seriously.”

So throughout the past twenty-four hours I have pretty much been the worst teacher you can possibly be without actually molesting somebody. I’m totally writing to the alumni magazine about this.

Best Reader Hurricane Quote so far goes to Susan the Reader, who wrote: “Let's hope Ophelia will commit suicide” at:

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