Skip to content
Advertisements

2014: The Day the Earth Stopped

August 27, 2014

It started like any other summer day.

Dad was in the kitchen on his cellphone trying to get a cup of coffee down and a business deal tied up. He signaled mom to turn the TV down so he could hear, but as soon as she did, she turned the other one up. He gave her a nasty look, looked like he might say something more to her, then put his finger over one ear and plugged on talking to the phone.

Mom was watching a repeat of some show with Guy Fiere visiting yet another diner that made the “Best Ribs in {insert city here}”.  She also had it on in the kitchen, where she was cooking something that smelled delicious, but historically probably wasn’t. To be fair it might have been better if Dad had skipped the middleman and married Guy Fiere. We’d eat better. 

Suz was holed up in her room, well into what would likely be a marathon texting session with a boy she claimed was “just a friend”. Everyone knew otherwise of course, the ringtone she used for him told an entirely different story.

I was playing a first person shooter game, determined to obliterate that prick in Florida who took me out last week. Who was this SOB, and why did he never seem to die?

Michael, aka the little nerd, was in a webmaster forum answering questions on search engine optimization. Wonder how many of the guys on the other end know SearchPro42 is twelve years old? Probably wouldn’t matter, for all we know, they are too.

He says apparently India has exactly two kinds of people; spammy Search Optimizers, and people that hire spammy Search Optimizers. Hell if I know. I don’t speak geek. They should have some kind of test for this. I can’t possibly be related to this munchkin.

Then IT happened.

Don’t get me wrong, we’d had internet outages before. The day that idiot drunk down the street plowed into the phone pole, we’d lost internet AND TV for almost an hour. And we’d had cell-phone outages before. To be honest our reception wasn’t that good to begin with. Something about the tower location and the geography on our street. Danged sure didn’t match their 4G map.

But never had we had phones AND television AND the net go out at the same time.

The house was suddenly eerily quiet. Not a sound. Totally silent. Suz came out of her room with phone in hand, looking distressed. Dad was holding his to the ceiling to see if the reception magically worked 2 ft higher than he’d been holding it. Michael walked out of his bedroom and looked at the rest of us accusingly, as if one of us broke the internet.

Mom, suddenly the level headed one, decided to call the cable company and check on the time they’d need to fix the TV. It wasn’t until then it occurred to her we haven’t had a land-line in 6 years and the cell reception went out at the same time.

I’m not going to say we panicked, cause comparatively we did pretty good. It’s my understanding half the people on my block with a land-line were calling the cable company, a quarter were calling the cell provider, and the remainder actually dialed 911.

This WAS an emergency. Nobody really knew what to do. We were trapped.

Then the strangest thing occurred.

One-by-one, slowly at first, then in increasing numbers… rusty door hinges up and down the block began to swing open. Teens who had not been without electronic communication since their 1st birthday stepped out, tentatively at first, then began pouring out of houses. Some dazed, a bit confused. Others looking about in wonder.

We couldn’t help but notice there was a glowing orange ball in the sky.

And that the air conditioning in our yard sucked.

sun

I'm Rob Jones... and I approve this message.

I’m Rob Jones… and I approve this message.

Advertisements
6 Comments leave one →
  1. August 27, 2014 11:40 am

    Rob, something like that actually happened to us over the 4th of July weekend. Cell phone service has always been iffy in our area, and the satellite TV goes out every time it rains, which is daily here in the summer. A storm blew though and took out both my landline phone, and my internet. It was five days before we were up and running again. I had to dust off the checkbook to pay bills, the yard finally got weeded, and there were a lot of discussions about how to do things “old school” for that inevitable day when the solar flares fry the grid and we’re all screwed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • August 27, 2014 11:41 am

      Amazing what we might actually get done if we didn’t have all the labor-saving devices.

      Like

  2. August 27, 2014 11:40 am

    Scary scenario! I hope you get the A/C in the yard fixed soon! :-)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. August 27, 2014 11:41 am

    Sounds like my childhood happened to the neighborhood.

    Liked by 1 person

    • August 27, 2014 11:43 am

      Yep. Mine too. Most kids by the age of three own more technology than was on Apollo 13 when it lifted off.

      Like

Have an opinion? Share it with the whole class.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: