Storm warning

By now you’ve doubtless heard about Hurricane Sandy; the record-breaking superstorm hype has been pretty hard to miss. Well, I just got a look at the latest NOAA track projection, and it looks like the storm center is going to pass directly over my house sometime Tuesday night. The center track on that map couldn’t hit me more accurately if it had been aimed.

The good news is Sandy will have dissipated over about 60 miles of land by the time it gets here; NOAA is projecting only severe (39-73mph) winds rather than hurricane force. The bad news is…73mph winds and torrential rain aren’t anything to sneeze at. We’re on high ground and won’t be flooded out, but tree-fall damage is a distinct possibility and we’re pretty much expecting a power outage – the main question is whether it will last hours or days.

We’re battening down the hatches. Emergency food and water have been laid in, and we’ve arranged mutual retreat options with friends who live a couple of miles away on a different power subnet. We’re about as prepared as we can be short of boarding up the windows. I keep meaning to install a generator…

Wish us luck. This is probably going to be no more than inconvenient, but the potential for significant physical danger is definitely present. In particular, if the freak synergy with that cold air mass over the Appalachians pulls Sandy over land fast enough, it could still be a true hurricane-force storm when it gets here. That would seriously suck.

UPDATE: I’ve posted followup storm bulletins on G+.

75 thoughts on “Storm warning

  1. While reading the post my brain went “but, but natural disasters are something that just happens to you when you are unlucky, they are not something you prepare for and power outages only last for a few hours and you can’t predict them anyway.”. Then i reminded myself how sheltered life in middle Europe is.

  2. Oh, I can assure you that even sudden, near instant natural disasters can be prepared for, saving many lives. The 2011 Joplin, Missouri, USA tornado formed in a scant 30 seconds but because we knew the conditions were ripe our deadly serious Civil Defense people were primed to see this and warn us. And enough of us paid attention to significantly mitigate injuries and loss of life. In my case, I had long before planned where I would shelter, which kept me from getting injured by the rocks that were hurtled into my apartment, which was thoroughly trashed (but nothing compared to the top 3rd floor ones that were all breached). This was about 500 feet north of the real, EF-5 center of the tornado….

    Whether you call it Providence or luck, plus some last second movement to safer interior spaces, we didn’t lose a single person in my apartment complex, not even the dozen who were in the flattened clubhouse north (upwards in the pictures) of the swimming pool.

    And, yeah, you guys in middle Europe are fortunately sheltered from most of/the worst of natural disasters. That’s not true for most of the US.

  3. Is a hurricane what we call a cyclone in our part of the world? I see they’re defined similarly. I wonder if it is an American usage. Wikipedia on “Hurricane” redirects to tropical cyclone.

    Always been curious about the nuances of these terms.

  4. Eric, strength and good luck. Hope the NOAA is wrong.

    @Emanuel Rylke
    “Then i reminded myself how sheltered life in middle Europe is.”

    Most people in the developed world are unaware how much planning and preparation is going on around them for just such natural disasters. Around here, the complete power-grid is laid out in rings, so any damage can be localized and routed around.

    We see them only when things were predicted in-correctly, and things really go wrong. Nature proves time and again that things can go bad in entirely new and unforeseen ways.

  5. Hari: Yes. It started out as an American usage, but it’s become convention for Western Hemisphere tropical cyclonic storms.

  6. >Then i reminded myself how sheltered life in middle Europe is.

    It’s true. One advantage of having umpty-bump thousands of kilometers of Eurasian landmass to spinward of you is that you’ll never see a cyclonic storm.

    But even outside that…the coastal mid-Atlantic region where I live is a marine-moderated climate, relatively mild and temperate for North America. Even so, we frequently get heat and cold extremes nobody in Germany will see in an average lifetime – every few summers somebody fries an egg on a Philadelphia or New York sidewalk as a stunt. In the continental interior the typical range is larger still.

  7. Amen to that. We get extremes of cold here in southern Minnesota – 43 N latitude – that Germany seldom sees, because we’re hundreds of miles away from any significant water. There’s a reason International Falls is so often in the news as the coldest spot in the US, and it’s only at 49 N.

  8. I am up in the woods of Connecticut. Our genset gives us comforts but most important it gives us peace of mind because it keeps us almost wholly independent. I recommend genset’s to anyone and everyone I know around here. Too few have them.

  9. >There’s a reason International Falls is so often in the news as the coldest spot in the US, and it’s only at 49 N.

    Little-known fact: Northern Minnesota weather both averages colder and has colder extremes than Siberia.

  10. @ESR

    Thank you for making me realise that spinward/anitspinward apply equally well to a planet as a ring.

    Is there a unit for quantities of enlightenment?

  11. > the freak synergy with that cold air mass over the Appalachians

    I wonder about that. I haven’t seen any real explanation of *why* the forecasters expect it to happen. Is it based on models? On actual previous storms where something similar has happened? Just looking at the weather map for the East Central US, there is a high behind the cold front that is (very slowly) pushing the front eastward. If anything, I would expect that to keep the storm out to sea.

  12. Hurricane Charley was supposedly aimed directly at the goldfish pond in my Bradenton, FL, back yard. A friend in Orlando invited us to come stay with his family during the storm.

    The storm bypassed Bradenton, but hit Orlando hard.

    I do not trust hurricane predictions more than 24 hours out. Even then, I don’t worry until/unless the wind kicks up and the rain goes sideways. We live in a heavily-reinforced house trailer, with a neighborhood shelter less than 100 yards away. We have pretty good “iron rations” in stock all the time, and both a charcoal and a propane grill for cooking without utilities, plus an inverter to keep our laptops charged from our cars, both of which we fill at the first thought of a major storm.

    It takes us less than 30 minutes (yes, we’ve practiced) to clear all “storm-blowable” items from our yard, grab the dog and a day’s worth of food, and get to the shelter.

  13. A bit of rain won’t hurt, you might even manage to flush out those pesky lingering hackers from your basement.

  14. Roblimo: you’re complaining about a forecasting miss of about 75 miles if Wikipedia + my map reading skills are good when we’re talking about a hurricane who’s tropical force winds reach out up to a freaking 520 miles and hurricane force up to 175 miles? (At 1,000 miles across this is now the largest Atlantic hurricane in recorded history.)

    You may be in good shape, have good plans and pay attention to these threats, but others are worrying rather a lot for all those in NYC Zone B who are at threat from the currently forecasted 6-11 foot storm surge but whom Mayor Bloomberg has yet to see fit to order an evacuation of. I’m tempted to quote Ghostbusters here but you can all fill in the blanks.

  15. >> I haven’t seen any real explanation of *why* the forecasters expect it to happen. Is it based on models?

    Yes, models developed from real world observation for what that is worth (not all that much). Chaotic systems are hard to predict longterm which is why weather forecasting sux past a few days.

    It’s all a question of relative air mass pressure. The low pressure in the leading edge of the cold air mass moving east over central US is a weak front that is predicted to become a stationary front when it collides with the warm & wet air mass very low pressure system that is hurricane Sandy. Warm-wet air will rise up over the cold air mass and drop it’s moisture, and the cyclonic circulation will pull cold air from the north into the N, WSW & S parts of the low pressure system. This is predicted to mix elements of a hurricane with a more typical NorEaster type storm (cold & wet air from north east that is something more rarely seen.

    Eventually the high pressure behind the front will build up enough to start pushing the low east.
    http://www.accuweather.com/en/us/national/weather-surface-maps

  16. @BioBob:
    > Warm-wet air will rise up over the cold air mass and drop it’s moisture, and the cyclonic circulation will pull cold air from the north into the N, WSW & S parts of the low pressure system. This is predicted to mix elements of a hurricane with a more typical NorEaster type storm (cold & wet air from north east that is something more rarely seen.

    Yes, I see how this will make the weather on our side of Sandy worse than it would be if the front wasn’t there. I’m not sure I see how this will make the eye of Sandy turn westward towards the front. But we’ll know either way in another day or so; the predicted track on the National Hurricane Center’s website has the storm turning westward tomorrow morning, so it should be clear by tomorrow afternoon where it’s headed.

    http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/graphics_at3.shtml?5-daynl?large#contents

  17. >Thank you for making me realise that that spinward/anitspinward apply equally well to a planet as a ring.

    And, as you may already have grokked, they’re the relevant directions when you’re talking about global wind circulation.

    >Is there a unit for quantities of enlightenment?

    Oooh. Let’s invent one. The microzen, “μz” (I’d use “microsatori”, but μs is taken). Provisionally defined as “the amount of insight you attain when you realize that ‘spinward’ and ‘antispinward’ are useful terms on planets as well as ringworlds”. I think I feel a blog post coming on.

    Please don’t start a subthread on this, people. Wait for the post.

  18. >A bit of rain won’t hurt, you might even manage to flush out those pesky lingering hackers from your basement.

    But I like having hackers lingering in my basement! It makes my cat happy.

    We put Dave Taht on a train this morning, he’s flying to Denmark or somewhere.

  19. @hari: Hurricane is, to the best of my knowledge, a native american (not from north america, but whatever) word, meaning “center of the wind” or “heart (center) of the sky”, according to different (but close) aboriginal civilizations. Mayans’ Popol Vuh had it as “heart of the sky”, and Taino tradition had it as center of the wind.

    Cyclon comes from Greek, means circle in movement.

  20. PD: Cyclone/Hurricane are more or less the same, except Cyclone is the general thing… say, Typhoons are Cyclones, and Hurricanes are Cyclones too… names have been used to identify Atlantic Ocean cyclones, as opposed to Pacific Ocean cyclones. Hurricane usually refers to Atlantic Ocean cyclones.

  21. >Hurricane usually refers to Atlantic Ocean cyclones.

    Whereas “typhoon” is generally reserved for a class of Pacific Ocean cyclones.

  22. “Oooh. Let’s invent one. The microzen, “?z” … I think I feel a blog post coming on. Please don’t start a subthread on this, people. Wait for the post.”

    That piece of advice isn’t going to keep me from doubling over on the floor laughing already.

  23. While I’m doubling over laughing at Eric’s insufferable humour…

    “We put Dave Taht on a train this morning, he’s flying to Denmark or somewhere.”

    Trains don’t fly…

    “>Hurricane usually refers to Atlantic Ocean cyclones. – Whereas “typhoon” is generally reserved for a class of Pacific Ocean cyclones.”

    I’d love to come over and keep your cat happy for a night or two, but I don’t want the TSA guys fondling my nuts on the way back…

    Hurricane is a WWII British fighter, Typhoon is a WWII British ground support aircraft, and Cyclone is an American WWII radial aircraft engine that neither of them used.

  24. The simplistic explanation of why Sandy is supposed to head back west instead of continuing north-east/east is that the NAO (North Atlantic Oscillation–remember the root cause snowmaggedon in 2011? Yeah, that’s back) is back in negative territory. Which essentially means a rather substantial high pressure system is planted over the northern Atlantic, to the east of Nova Scotia. This has basically closed the door to the Gulf Stream carting Sandy off to nothingness somewhere in the Atlantic.

    Between the NAO, and a jet stream that is swung way to the south and then over the Atlantic, and then pushing back up to the northwest, Sandy, according to the models, really doesn’t have a chance.

    And yes, the ultimate forecast is driven by models. But the models have been spot-on since Sandy first formed a week or so ago. The more adventurous meteorologists looked at the “long range” models, and saw the potential for an east coast impact pretty much right away.

    There has been a lot of second-guessing, in particular because the particular dynamics involved (the cold front coming down and stalling, the NAO going negative, the jet getting twisted like a pretzel, and Sandy actually holding its core and heading north, instead of east, while in the Caribbean) are something never seen in modern times. The closest analogy is “The Perfect Storm” in ’91, but that was mostly well out to sea off of New England. But the combination of a left-over hurricane, and a big Nor’Easter, is basically the same combo we’ve got now. Only it’s looking to pound the East Coast in about 24 hours.

    I’m outside of Baltimore, and we’re looking at a ton of rain and a lot of wind. We’ll probably lose power, but we’ve got a generator and a lot of gas. Hopefully, it won’t be an issue. But we’re better prepared than we ever have been previously.

    Good luck, Eric. This is going to be an interesting ride.

  25. Speaking as a Floridian who has literally forgotten how many hurricaines I’ve been through:
    A) Yankees can’t handle anything but snowstorms.
    B) Ice. You can never have too much ice.

  26. What Nukem is talking about is a Rex block over the Atlantic keeping Sandy from tearing off to the east like most hurricanes do to hit the UK with their remains. The jet has carved out a negatively tilted trough over the eastern US that will let Sandy veer west to phase with it instead – causing a noreaster type storm. A somewhat similar scenario to the ‘perfect storm’. The models have been hinting at a storm moving up the Atlantic for over a week, but no meteorologist gets too excited about a week-2 model forecast (except for storm-junkies who indulge in wishful thinking). By last Tues NCEP started watching the storm closely because at least some of the models were showing the left-turn scenario. The euro model is going to win the prize for being the first & most consistent with its Sandy forecast. Now to finish battening down the hatches here to the south of Baltimore.

  27. Laugh at the models all you want, the fact is that they have predicted Sandy’s course darn well from more than a week out. I’ll add that they predicted Irene’s course last year with even better accuracy. (That one’s eye passed over my house; fortunately the storm had weakened considerably by then.)

    @esr: If you are considering a generator, do you have gas service? A gas generator won’t leave you out of fuel while the gas stations still can’t pump due to no electricity.

  28. “power outages only last for a few hours [in middle Europe]”

    I’ve been without power for as long as a week following a major hurricane in the American Southeast. Hopefully you’ll be luckier than I was.

    Ice storms can also take down power for a week; been there, done that. Good idea to keep a camp stove, fuel, canned food, flashlights and power source, radios, etc.

    Here on the West Coast we never get hurricanes–it’s that spinward landmass thing again–just earthquakes, but significant ones are much more rare and impact smaller areas than a high-Cat hurricane.

  29. I believe that the West Coast saw typhoons as late as the 19th century.

  30. >@esr: If you are considering a generator, do you have gas service?

    >I do have gas service, and that’s a good idea.

  31. @John D. Bell
    Ah, maybe Gaia treats her worshipers like Fortuna does?

  32. I figure it’s not so much a case of Eric pissing Gaia off, as him being a pagan as a result of Gaia getting in his face and forcing him to acknowledge her presence. :-D

  33. Time to test the “Twoflower Principle”

    Stand atop a hill in wet copper armor, during Sandy, shouting “ALL GODS ARE BASTARDS!”

  34. “the coastal mid-Atlantic region where I live is a marine-moderated climate, relatively mild and temperate for North America. Even so, we frequently get heat and cold extremes nobody in Germany will see in an average lifetime”

    Strange that I never realized this. I considered my Central Europe to be too extreme – today it is snow and near-winter temperatures (2C / 36F) in Vienna, two weeks ago we basically had a summer-like weekend in t-shirts. I always considered most of the USA to have a fairly small temperature range between say 15C/60F to 22C/70F because this is how people in movies dress – in the average Hollywood movie male actors typically wear a shirt and a leather jacket, not too thick. Winter clothing is rare except for Xmas movies, running around in just a t-shirt and sweating is similarly rare in the movies. It just always looks like that nice 19C/65F September weather when I feel exactly comfortable in a long-sleeve shirt and leather jacket, neither hot nor cold.

    This is not the only thing Hollywood movies misrepresent about American life – for example I have already figured out Al Bundy would either not have such a big house or not always complain about being dirt poor IRL. Perhaps a list could be made about these.

  35. >We put Dave Taht on a train this morning, he’s flying to Denmark or somewhere.

    Ahahahah, as someone who froze his backside off in Copenhagen November in 3 sweaters and in knee-deep snow, I find it sounds a bit of an ironic place to flee to from bad weather.

  36. “I always considered most of the USA to have a fairly small temperature range between say 15C/60F to 22C/70F [because of movies]…”

    ROTFL. The northern half of the country routinely sees freezing temperatures in winter. In the northern states (Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, etc.), winter temperatures of zero Fahrenheit are not unusual and temperatures can go as low as -20 F even in major urban areas. I’ve personally experienced it. (No need to go to distant Alaska or some isolated frontier town on the northern border.)

    At the other extreme, it’s very, very common to have summer temperatures in excess of 90 F across much of the country (the entire Southeast up through the mid-Atlantic states, even as far north as Minnesota). In the Southwest, temperatures routinely exceed 100 F.

    “This is not the only thing Hollywood movies misrepresent about American life – for example I have already figured out Al Bundy would either not have such a big house or not always complain about being dirt poor IRL.”

    Actually, this is credible. Many Americans became “house-poor” during the recent housing boom, meaning that they put too much of their total assets into their homes and too much of their income into mortgage payments. They weren’t poor objectively, given their incomes, but the large size of their monthly mortgage payments limited funds available to do anything discretionary.

    You make a good broader point here. What do Americans assume about the rest of the planet, based on media distortions, that just isn’t so?

  37. >What do Americans assume about the rest of the planet, based on media distortions, that just isn’t so?

    To answer this question it would be helpful to know actually what European movies, books etc. get popular in the US. Cobra 11, anyone? Inspector Rex?

  38. @Cathy
    “You make a good broader point here. What do Americans assume about the rest of the planet, based on media distortions, that just isn’t so?”

    This list grows faster than you can write the items down. But I am afraid most people in the world will follow the same list when it concerns “other” people.

  39. That temperature range is about right (well, maybe a bit low) for Hollywood itself–coastal southern California has extremely consistent and mild weather.

    The rest of the country, not so much. New York has been ranging 20-100 in recent years, and sub-zero used to be fairly common.

    For pure extremes, 10 is perfectly normal winter weather in Minneapolis, and -41 is the record low; in Phoenix, 110 is normal summer weather, and 122 is the record high.

  40. Cathy> You make a good broader point here. What do Americans assume about the rest of the planet, based on media distortions, that just isn’t so?

    Hah! Most Americans couldn’t find Europe on a globe! Many of them would tell you that Italians like Pizza and Sketti, French love fried potatos, Germans love beer, and the English have bad teeth. I doubt the “average” American knows much else (well, other than maybe Greece isn’t a such a good place to take your 2012 winter vacation ;^).

  41. The rest of the world is *so* much more sophisticated than those ghastly Americans. If the dumb yanks weren’t so busy opening their flabby mouths to shovel more burgers down their gullets, they’d probably forget to breathe.

    /eurotwat

  42. @Don i wouldn’t expect most Europeans to do much better in reverse. Europeans do care more about seeing themselves as educated. But it doesn’t seem to me that there is an actual difference in educatedness. Although there is probably a higher standard deviation in the education of Americans compared to Europeans. At least the Germen intellectual elite doesn’t seem AFAICT anywhere near the level of the American intellectual elite.

  43. Here in southern Minnesota, we routinely have days at a stretch where the temperature never gets above zero F (-18 C), and months where it never gets above freezing, and in summer, highs routinely reach 95 F (35 C), with the all-time record high 101 F (38 C).

  44. How about an update Eric. Did you, Cathy, and sugar pull through OK?

  45. @shenpen

    The Millenium trillogy was popular in the USA despite being *very* hasty translations from Swedish. (They did the math to convert kilometers to miles but didn’t round it to make it colloquial.)

    Movies tend to get remade. Examples include the Girl With the Dragon Tatoo, La Femme Nikita, The Tall Blonde Man with One Black Shoe and so on. Studios seem to think American audiences can’t or won’t read subtitles.

    Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is an exception. Perhaps we’ll get more.

  46. Further thought, the Millenium trilogy is set in Sweden. Perhaps it gives us the wrong impression of the Nordic countries…

  47. Further thought, the Millenium trilogy is set in Sweden. Perhaps it gives us the wrong impression of the Nordic countries…

    In terms of climate, I don’t know. In terms of politics and society, hell yes. Stieg Larsson was a far left-winger, even by Swedish standards, and paints a cartoon of a Sweden rife with crime, corruption, and violence, where neo-Nazis — literal Hitler fanboys — hold positions of high power and influence. To Larsson’s eye, racists, rapists, and capitalists are all the same people. It was like Dan Brown’s hilariously inaccurate Mad Max portrayal of Spain, except the author was talking about his own country.

    The MilTril was bad on so many levels.

  48. “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is an exception.”

    I want to see more “exceptions” like that. I see movies as good as that one only at rare intervals.

  49. Strange that I never realized this. I considered my Central Europe to be too extreme – today it is snow and near-winter temperatures (2C / 36F) in Vienna, two weeks ago we basically had a summer-like weekend in t-shirts. I always considered most of the USA to have a fairly small temperature range between say 15C/60F to 22C/70F because this is how people in movies dress – in the average Hollywood movie male actors typically wear a shirt and a leather jacket, not too thick.

    Until recently most movies were actually made in Hollywood. Sets would be set up right there on the studio backlot, in southern California — where it is almost always sunny and temperate. FYI, that’s why Kirk always beamed down to the same planet that just happened to look like the deserts of southern California.

    And it’s not so strange. I find that once they get around a bit, foreigners are often surprised and overwhelmed by just what a BIG and diverse place the USA is. Health care and education still suck pretty uniformly, though.

  50. >How about an update Eric. Did you, Cathy, and sugar pull through OK?

    Yes. I was posting storm bulletins at frequent intervals on Google+.

  51. @Cathy
    I live in a country where all movies and TV programs come in original with subtitles. It is a different world you are entering.

    I simply cannot stand dubbed movies anymore. I simply rather skip the movie.

  52. All the spaghetti westerns were dubbed even in the original Italian. It seems the sound stages were under an airport flypath. They *had* to redub them.

  53. American remakes of foreign films also have the advantage of employing more people than simply releasing the foreign film in the USA. It’s a bigger deal and everybody gets a cut. Remakes are a better bet even than sequels.

  54. *I* think the Millenium trilogy gives Americans a bad idea of life in Fennoscandia.

    OTOH, there was some flavor of being caught in the middle of the cold war. Steig Larsson didn’t like the Soviets either.

  55. I also think the Milenium Trilogy is an axample of the fact that people are bad judges of their own society.

    One of the least corruptable and safest countries in the world is obvously obsessed with with corruption and violence. Just as a very religious people will be obsessed with atheism and immorality.

  56. We have our own cyclonic storm coming up. Cyclone Nilam is set to hit the Indian eastern coast on Wednesday… It will have a major impact if it stays intense, though hopefully not devastating like the hurricane that hit the US.

  57. @Jeff Read: “I find that once they get around a bit, foreigners are often surprised and overwhelmed by just what a BIG and diverse place the USA is.”

    Yes, I think that you to find a European country the size and diversity of the U.S., you’d have to look at one of the empires that spanned much of the European continent. A modern European nation is more comparable to a U.S. state than to the U.S. as a whole, both in land area and population.

    This is probably one reason that some Americans find it strange that Europeans can’t seem to form a “United States of Europe”.

    “Health care and education still suck pretty uniformly, though.”

    Uh, I think you can get just about any medical condition treated in the U.S. We have some of the best hospitals in the world, and do first-class research. I suspect you are complaining about insurance and access to care, not quality of care.

  58. Uh, I think you can get just about any medical condition treated in the U.S. We have some of the best hospitals in the world, and do first-class research. I suspect you are complaining about insurance and access to care, not quality of care.

    Indeed. None of that matters in the intersection of “not well” and “not rich”.

    The United States is the only industrialized country where the quality of care you get access to depends on income. Being poor shortens your life in the USA, but not in Canada.

  59. @Jeff Read
    “The United States is the only industrialized country where the quality of care you get access to depends on income. Being poor shortens your life in the USA, but not in Canada.”

    I sympathize with your assertion. However, you must be more specific about which countries you are taking as a model. Not all countries generally considered “industrialized” have been able to keep up quality of care across the board (the usual suspects).

    Also, being poor shortens your life everywhere in the world as it affects basic health before remedial care comes into view. But there is indeed still a difference due to where you live in how much your life is shortened by poverty.

  60. An update. The cyclone “Nilam” has finally hit the coast of South East India, bringing gusty winds and very heavy rains. While this is not a superstorm or frankenstorm by any stretch of the imagination, it has the potential to disrupt daily life for a week at least. If the rain forecast comes true, heavy flooding is to be expected in low lying and coastal areas – throwing out of gear normal transportation, destroying property and also destroying crops. The city of Chennai has been spared a direct hit of the storm, but the winds were howling all day today making pretty scary noises. We had a power cut for about an hour or so, but hopefully nothing major – it was merely a precautionary measure.

    I can only imagine how scary Sandy must have been to the people on the East Coast of the US. Even a normal cyclone is scary.

  61. Sandy ended up being merely a pain here in central Maryland. Power knocked out, still not up, but it’s up in neighboring areas. So I couldn’t telecommute, but I could drive in to work, see movies (Looper!), etc. A lot of branches got knocked onto the road, but I saw no entire trees the day after, and rivers are higher, but not flooding.

  62. It seems like European movies are more likely to be remade, and East Asian movies are more likely to be dubbed and/or subtitled. I suspect that the popularity of anime has gotten Americans used to watching original media from East Asian.

  63. Also, being poor shortens your life everywhere in the world as it affects basic health before remedial care comes into view. But there is indeed still a difference due to where you live in how much your life is shortened by poverty.

    I recall reading a report from the Canadian government which showed a life expectancy of around 81 years for rich individuals — and only a year or two less for people from lower income brackets. So the difference in lifespan due to poverty in Canada is very small, whereas in the USA it’s quite large.

    Canada is a good model for Americans to consider. It is, after all, America’s hat; and the health profiles of Canadians and Americans used to look very similar — until the 1970s when Canada went single-payer.

  64. Lifespan isn’t just a function of health care. It’s also heavily a factor of things people do that can get them killed whether they’re healthy or not.

  65. Jeff Read:

    “The United States is the only industrialized country where the quality of care you get access to depends on income. Being poor shortens your life in the USA, but not in Canada.”

    That’s a blatant idiocy. Being rich improves your life expectancy everywhere.
    Rich people can easier afford a healthy lifestyle (no backbreaking work, time & money for the fitness center, and so on)

  66. As Tam pointed out on her blog, that was a just-barely Category 1 storm, with an 11-foot storm surge. In Florida, we call that “September.” Stupid silly damyankees. Nobody would have died, had they all paid attention and used their heads. They had plenty of warning. It never fails to amaze me how the non-Flarduh people go completely crazy when a hurricane comes their way.

    Unfortunately, most of the people who live around me are Non-Flarduh people, being annoying midwesterners, and I don’t trust them in an emergency. “Give me some men who are stout-hearted men!” That is , Southern boys.

  67. P.s. Let me tell y’all about a real Florida woman.

    She died a few years back, aged 90-something. She was the grandmother of one of my neighbors. She had problems with her malaria from time to time, but it was understood by all back then, that you might have some malaria problems if you chose to live in Florida.

    She never went anywhere without her cordless drill, of the Colt variety, I believe, since around, uh, I dunno, 1928 or thenabouts.

    Her lawn guy got upset at her for deploying it against the squirrels who were eating her house. He told her something like “Miz Hall, we can’t do that any more! Somebody might call the law on you!

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