Because so many people have moved from other parts of the country to South Carolina – especially along the coast – I thought it might be a good idea to write a primer about life in a Hurricane Alley.
Right now, as Hurricane Idalia approaches, some of you are panic stricken — don’t be. It’s not worse than being Bill and having to spoon with Hillary Clinton. And he’s not dead. Not yet.
Some of you think it will be fun — if it hits, it won’t be. It will suck more than Kamala Harris climbing the political ladder.
And some of you are glued to the Weather Channel, which is like listening to Karine Jean-Pierre in search of the truth. That’s right: The Weather Channel is always wrong. Not kinda wrong, but wrong like selling-access-to-your-vice-presidency-and-sharing-the-with-money-with-a-crackhead level wrong. If you’ll notice, they have reporters in every city within 300 miles of their predicted landfall. This is because they know they’re wrong, and want to have a reporter in the correct city — wherever the hell that may be.
Given the average American has the attention span of Diane Feinstein, they’ll forget about the Weather Channel’s reckless reporting, and think, “Look! They knew! They had reporters there! Look how brave they are, pretending to be blown around by the wind!”
Also please note that, while the Weather Channel will blather on like Nancy Pelosi at a bottomless mimosa event about how a tropical storm is still “extremely dangerous,” it ain’t. “Tropical storm” actually means “It will rain, be kinda gusty, you might lose cable for a couple hours, and Folly Beach is going to smell like weed — surfs up, dude.”
But … let’s say the very unlikely happens, and 24-hours out the prediction is Charleston will be a direct hit. What do you need to do? How should you prepare? What do you do afterwards?
Unless it is a category four or five, there’s no need to evacuate. Every house, commercial building, street sign, and tree that needed to go away, went away in Hugo.
Okay … your plans for surviving and thriving: First, buy lots of coolers and fill them to the top with ice. Ice will be the most valuable commodity in the area, because warm Gin and Tonics suck. It would also be wise to procure several cases of booze — liquor, not beer, because beer takes up too much room in your cooler.
Owning booze is critical, because everyone’s food will be going bad in their powerless refrigerator. The first day post-storm, stay cool — everyone will be in shock, and reluctant to admit to themselves the power isn’t coming on any time soon. (It ain’t). Day Two is when you make your move, racing from neighbor to neighbor to share a big drink.
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While it’s true you’ll be completely in the bag by the time you finish a drink with your tenth neighbor, odds are they won’t notice — they’ll probably be distracted by the fact that almost everything they own is two neighbors over, and they can’t remember if they updated their “contents insurance” in the past twenty years.
Your kind gesture on Day Two will be remembered and the neighbors will be tricked into thinking you’re a very fine fellow—instead of a ruthless predator, strategically mapping out your every move. As a result, they’ll invite you over when they’re grilling their soon-to-be-rotten steaks and local shrimp.
As Day Three arrives, there will be a ton of food being grilled in your neighborhood—more than enough to go around—so be sure to help yourself to a little to-go food in the event you get the late-night munchies. If you get caught, tell them you’re taking it for your surly, entitled, passive-aggressive teenager, whom you have chained up in the attic.
Day Three is also when people stop wandering around in a daze, and start cleaning up the clear-cut pasture once known as their tree-filled and manicured lawn. This is when you’ll pull out the paper mache materials you purchased beforehand and spin up a fake cast for your arm. Set the cast, then trudge forlornly out your front door, and go full Happy Jack trying to saw up a limb with you left arm. Your neighbors will see you struggling, and take over.
You can reward them with a Gin and Tonic with ice … and they’re gonna need it, because the ‘hood is fixin’ to go full Lord of the Flies.
You, of course, will have spent $10,000 for a full-house gas-powered generator, which you’ll want to position on your front lawn … just to make sure the neighbors see and hear it. They’ll wonder what it’s powering, and knock on your door. When you open the door — Kaboom! A blast of A/C hits them.
They’ll want to muscle in, if only for a few minutes, and you’ll smack them with, “I’m happy to share my blessings … and those are rare these days. I’m out of batteries, and I need them to keep my Aunt Sally’s respirator running.”
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A neighborhood-wide Go-battery-me fund will be launched, and batteries will come pouring in the door… and you’re the only one who’ll know batteries will soon be more valuable than a cell phone and a case of smokes inside Rikers Island.
Day Three is also a good time to feed your insurance guy’s kid, who you kidnapped in all the confusion of Day One (and chained next to your teenager). Don’t give him any water, though — you want him to sound desperate when he calls home and tells his dad to get to your address and start adjusting, chop-chop.
Day Four is about the time everyone’s run down their battery powered radio or TV, and they’re jonesing to hear about Trump’s 23rd indictment for the crime of saying, “Bidenomics don’t work.” That’s when you start selling your batteries in other neighborhoods at a 1,000 percent mark-up. Don’t listen to the whining about price-gouging-this and taking-advantage-that… you’re offering a service. Willing seller + willing buyer = capitalism at its finest.
Day Four is also when the butt-crack contractors will coming rolling into town in force. You will feel helpless in the face of their butt-crack-ish contracting services. This is when you ask yourself:
Can I trust this guy? Sure. In the same way your neighbors trusted you to use the batteries for Aunt Sally’s ventilator.
Will he do good work? You’ll never know — he’ll be 300 miles away before you and 20 other homeowners realize he ain’t coming back.
Will insurance pay for all this? If your broker is afraid for his kid’s life, sure. Otherwise, they’re going to want to see a purchase receipt for the desk that’s been in your family for 170 years.
What do I do? Drink the booze I told you to buy, and pray it rains, so the water pouring through your roofless home will complete the destruction of everything still in one piece. That way, you’ll get one big check for 20-cents on the dollar to start over.
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Day Five is when the real profits come rolling in, as you drive South of Broad and start selling ice by the cube. You haven’t seen money fly until you see a Yankee in need of a drink after just discovering that wind and hail are covered, but the adjuster says it was flooding that caused his $7,400,000 house to collapse like Hunter Biden after his fourth Russian hooker.
You’re probably wondering, with all the doom and gloom I’m predicting, why you shouldn’t evacuate?
The answer is pretty simple: You’re going to dress up in a coat and tie, don the State Farm nametag you ordered in advance, carry the ‘State Farm” checks you had printed in advance, and go around “settling claims.”
“Oh, your Ferrari hubcaps got dinged? We’ll cover that with a new car replacement … here’s a check. Just sign the title over — make it to me. Things are crazy at corporate.”
“Ouch! Your 74’ Hatteras had the awning torn. I just don’t have time for a detailed inspection — we’ll just buy you a new one. Here’s a check — sign it over to me.”
“You sweet lady! You’re almost blind and stuck in a wheelchair … and you’re worried about your diamond collection? Where is it? Wait here — I’ll go inventory and appraise it.”
Worried about all this criminal activity? Bottom line is this: If we get hit by a hurricane, you’re gonna get screwed. But the laws of physics say “for every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction.”
Ergo, you’re just following the law.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR …
Prioleau Alexander is a freelance writer, focusing mostly on politics and non-fiction humor. He is the author of two books: ‘You Want Fries With That?’ and ‘Dispatches Along the Way.’ Both are available on Amazon. He hopes to have another title published soon, but that would require his agent actually doing his job, so it may be awhile. Oh, and if you want to see his preferred bio pic? Click here …
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