30 April 2009

Day after day (the show must go on)

Last night, I was exhausted but decided today I'd be able to write a well-thought-out, possibly heartfelt post on...something. Of course, I was awakened just before 6 a.m. by the sound of the daughter being sick. Nothing says "I love you, Mommy" like having to clean a bathroom before one even gets a cup of coffee.

So, that was how my day began.

(She's fine. It's a run-of-the-mill stomach bug, and she's been clamoring for food since 7 a.m. Which means she's gotten clear fluids, to her disgust.)

The spouse called this morning and wanted to know if I was taking the daughter to the doctor. Are you kidding? No fever, no other symptoms, no way. I had to talk to the pediatrician yesterday about a new prescription for the son's allergy meds, and waited 20 minutes just to get a receptionist. There have been no confirmed cases of flu in our county (two probable, however), but plenty of confirmed cases of hysteria.

All month I've been planning to do a post on preparedness, because--wouldn't you just know it?--April is Earthquake Preparedness Month. And yes, it is corny. But I'm a very big fan of preparedness. You, (yes, I am looking at *you*) need to be prepared for anything.

Name the disaster anything you want: Katrina, wildfire, pandemic, earthquake. In the wake of any large-scale problem, whether courtesy of illness or Mother Nature or human behavior, you need to be prepared to take care of yourself. It's not that the government doesn't want to help you out, but the resources may be unavailable or stretched too thinly. So it's very much up to you to see to the protection of you and your family.

I could go on. And on. And on. But I'm going to make it easy on all of us. Particularly since this is more or less the second time this week I've written this sort of post.

Here are appropriate links:

Earthquake preparedness, courtesy of the LA Fire Department.

Pandemic flu preparedness, by the US Department of Health and Human Services.

Wildfire preparedness, by the Orange County Fire Authority. Contains a lot of common sense information, but other agencies may have prepared their own area-specific information.

Emergency Preparedness and Response for Natural Disasters & Severe Weather, by the CDC, which has additional information on other specific hazards here.

No one wants to think about this stuff, I know. But the day the ice storm hits, the week you lose electrical power for four days, the moment you don't want to set foot outdoors because everyone is ill, you will be so glad that you did.

Go listen to some good music: "Day After Day (the Show Must Go On)" from the album I Robot by The Alan Parsons Project. The spouse and I have both worked for a company that deals with investigating a wide variety of disasters, so we see the aftermath constantly. It's galvanizing, to say the least.

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