Jenny and I were sitting at home when the power just went out. Looking outside, it was clear that the whole neighborhood was dark. Lights danced in nearby windows, dogs barked, and a few folks gathered on the street, talking softly. Jenny and I grabbed some candles and then found the radio-flashlight.
Crack. Crank. Crank. AM radio! FM too!
No news on the blackout - but twirling the tiny, plastic dial, I found a late 1940s radio play, Bob Hope's "Ghost Breakers." Sitting in the dark, lit by flickering candles, we listened to a cheesy story that was interspersed with jokes about Harry Truman, Jack Benny, and the Ku Klux Klan.
Clunk. Clunk. Clunk. Watch out! Behind you! He has a gun! Bang Bang!
The cats settled on our laps and we enjoyed the vibe. The house all dark, filled with the tinny sounds of 1940s-comedy. Then I wondered: will it be like this if our country really goes to hell? Sitting at home, listening to the radio?
Jenny, often more practical than I during these sorts of events, decided she'd had enough of our forced historicism. We could just drive to a nearby coffee shop, she offered.
Well, yes, I suppose we could.
Our car was locked behind a closed electrical garage door, and we had to pull the string and open it manually. It was like we were figuring out some Boy Scout badge skill.
A few minutes later, we entered the part of town where the outage had not struck. I was sad, seeing how small our temporary catastrophe proved to be. Beyond Skypark, our neighborhood, people are watching television, seeing movies, living their normal lives.
Even further beyond... it's a bit frightening to contemplate.
Now we're in a coffee shop, sipping pricey stuff, listening to some sultry sounding guitar music, and grooving on the wireless.
It's cool, I guess. But I want to go home soon - time traveling to the age after the Depression and before the Space Age.