Delay our date, Sue Nommie

Do you have your supply of water, plenty of food squirreled away and a plan of action for when the big one hits? You know those plates are moving around and they've just refigured things and now think that the major epicenter of the next monster quake could be much closer to us chickens than they originally thought.

How are you doing in your preparations for our coming tsunami? The last map I looked at had several different levels of danger depending upon the size of the wave, but it doesn't look good.

Are you prepared to sur-vive the coming sugar shortage? Now, along with corn, sugar is being used for alcohol so that we can shed our dependence on Arab world oil. I'm already beginning to hoard candy bars and candy canes.

How will you be able to fend off the coming cyber attack? I hear that we're not far off from a major cyber strike that could disable our entire monetary system or military or food distribution systems. Can you balance your checkbook without your computer and do you have enough cash buried in your backyard to survive?

Flee the flu?

I'm wondering if I'm going to survive the coming swine flu invasion. I don't even know if I want the series of vaccinations that are required to head off the dreaded disease. Is there any safe place to hide until it's over?

Well, time to relax. I'm here to tell you that I have been perfecting the time-tested technique of procrastination, and it works perfectly - at least in the eyes of the beholder wearing my glasses.

Seeking forgiveness from my parents was always lots easier than wrangling permission from their contemplating, negotiating, permission-granting process.

Doing nothing on term papers, class projects and proposal deadlines always paid off. Oftentimes the terms and conditions would lighten up and, even more often, the deadline would be extended anyhow.

Besides, how much can a person effectively worry? It's going to happen when it's going to happen and we can't affect that anyhow. And oftentimes, there is really nothing we can do to prevent its happening.

Wife Nancy and I were on the Spruce Trail this summer and it was beautiful as usual. There was a gentle breeze that offered a gust or two but actually quite a pleasant day.

On our return trip from the end of the trail, we came upon a sizeable tree that had dropped across the trail sometime after we had passed by earlier in the morning.

Wife Nancy's eyes got wide and she immediately began worrying about how that might have happened and could it happen again at any time. I tried assuring her that trees never fall across the trails on weekends, but she wasn't buying that.

I didn't have any better luck in assuring her that the slide on the Hurricane Ridge road was a fluke and will never happen again.

"Did they know that it was going to slide?" (She asked me the same question when a slide took out our road one time, prohibiting us from reaching our house for a week or two.)

"Are we ready for the next earthquake? When this plate slides under that plate under the straits, will we suffer any damage?"

If you've been in Yellowstone Park or Anchorage after their little quakes, you will get some kind of a feel for what all could happen at any time. But the time part is where the rub comes into play. It could be today or 1,000 days or 1,000 years from now. And the magnitude could be an 8.0 or one off the chart.

But the best and only truth is that we have no idea when it's going to hit and "us procrastinators" love it.

All that stuff you have stashed everywhere to tide you over during the next tsunami tide more than likely will be poisonously stale by the time you'll ever need it.

Also, you may as well not spend so much time bolting all your valuables to the walls because most likely the entire wall will be flat on the ground anyhow or perhaps even several ZIP codes on down the line. When plates meet and confer, big things happen.

I'm thinking, when the time is right, I'm just donning my float tube fishing gear and I'll just wear it everywhere I go, kind of like a nonswimmer kid wearing that rubber duck float tube around his waist. When the high water comes, I'll be totally prepared to float to safety.

Jim Follis is a retired school administrator, has published two books and currently writes three newspaper columns. Eating, drinking and making merry are his professed hobbies. Traveling, trekking and observing people follow not far behind.

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Read the Oct 20
Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Browse the archives.

Friends to Follow

View All Updates