28 Aug 2011

Irene…Hurricane of Interest

uploaded to flickr.com by the Official U.S. Navy Imagery

If you’re like me, you’ve spent this past Saturday afternoon and evening at home avoiding the downpours and strong winds of Hurricane Irene.  That time was mostly spent trying to find productive things to do, peppered with worry over losing power and just a hint of “please don’t let that limb fall on my car.”  Yes, many a Facebook friend and Twitterer posted updates of the heavy drinking that apparently occurred area-wide in preparation for, and coping with, forced family time; and a number of folks noted how difficult their pets were being with respect to relieving themselves outside in the storm.

I drove home at 4:00 p.m. and most of the Hill was a ghost town: few people on the sidewalks, few cars, and no one eating outside at Banana Cafe.  The Atlas Performing Arts Center canceled an evening comedy show; Arena Stage canceled performances; and all network television was pre-empted for “live coverage.”  (Yes, it’s still raining. Send the poor reporter inside, please.) Where was everyone?  Online, it seemed.  Multiple posts from businesses and neighbors on Facebook, Twitter, and web sites noting early closings, runs on supplies, or in some entertaining cases, opportunities to get out of the house:

From the Argonaut, at 6:33 p.m.: “6:33. Still open. 🙂 Even some hardcore outdoor bar customers!”

From Zest Bistro, around 4:30 p.m.: “We’re open – come join us for Pan seared sea scallops on crab risotto with grilled peach, tomato and chili pepper relish! Eat that, Irene!”

Wisdom Bar tweeted a few specials for such a special weather day, which included new “hurriquake” cocktails and calling mother nature a whore.  Channel that anger, bartenders.

And probably my favorite Irene drink special of the weekend, from Capital City Diner: “Watching @myfoxdc coverage of #dcirene. Every time @brianbolter says #seafoam, take shot on the house. Offer good til we’re out of whiskey.”  I’m guessing they ran out.

The forecast for Sunday calls for clearing skies and sunshine by the early afternoon.  Eastern Market will be open on Sunday, and outdoor vendors will be setting up starting at 11:00 a.m., a little later than usual.
If you’re reading this post on Sunday morning, that means you woke up to internet or phone service, electricity, and a dry computer or phone.  Assess the damages, be thankful we all have Sunday to recover from this mess, and hope for next week to be free of natural disasters.

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