Thursday, February 17, 2011

So which is it?

It started the other night. Last Wednesday actually. You've probably heard about it. There was a huge Natural Gas explosion here in Allentown. A 3 block walk from my house. Almost.

We're fine, no damage to our house or anything, but let me tell you, the shockwave from an explosion can leave a lasting impression. Knowing that 5 people died in the resulting fire kinda sticks with you too.

My heart goes out to all of the families affected, this is a true tragedy. And made worse by the fact that our Natural Gas infrastructure is a mess and at the rate they're currently fixing things, it'll be roughly the 2nd of Never when the upgrades are finally finished.

We sat and did some math. The necessary upgrades will cost $13 billion to complete. But I was curious, what does that much money look like? How do you get your head around that many zeros. I looked up the population of Allentown and at the most recent estimate it's roughly 111,000 people. Then we said, a Grande White Mocha is $5.50 give or take.


$13 billion divided by 111,000 people, divided by $5.50 per White Mocha, equals approximately 21,000 coffees per person.

21,000 coffees per person divided by 365 days in a year, works out to 58 years and about 2 months.

In other words, the cost of repairing that Natural Gas infrastructure in our little city, is roughly equivalent to free coffee for the entire city for the next 6 decades.


That's all very fascinating, but I'm not sleeping now. I've been up until like 2am for something like 7 nights in a row now. Granted Saturday and Sunday I had off and some of those nights I did close at work, but still.

The question is, is this just insomnia triggered by a rather frightening event (a friend of mine actually needs to have repairs done to her living room wall from the shockwave) or am I having some sort of existential crisis. Add in the fact that I have OCD and it's anybody's guess.

All I know, is right now Tylenol Simply Sleep is the only reason I'm getting anything close to enough sleep to keep going. Bleh.


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