SBP Trouper

We’re having an SBP (Storm of Biblical Proportion) as I type this. A minute ago, the deck door blew open with a bang, the lights went out, and Veronica peed on the floor. I’d have yelled, but basically, it was only by drawing on my fifty-eight years of accumulated maturity that I kept from joining her. It’s times like this that I think, as I look out at the massive trees tossing in the wind as the temperature drops and the hail begins to fall, “All this glass. All these trees. Who thought that was a good idea?” At least I’ll go with a magnificent view.

So I ate a pint of Ben and Jerry’s “Everything But . . .” which I think they make by combining everything that’s left over at the end of the day: Heath bar pieces, peanut butter cups, different kinds of ice cream, chocolate chunks, nuts . . . . It seems like a good idea but it ends up tasting like Los Angeles: there’s no center to it, you just drive around tasting things that are pretty but have no meaning in context. I never realized how important theme was to ice cream until I ate the stuff while Death pounded at my plate glass.

Of course it’s not just the wind, we also get flood warnings. People think a lot of rain here makes the Ohio flood here. Not so. It’s that damn West Virginia rain that builds up and rushes down here that creates all the havoc. Our rain just heads for the Mississippi along with most of the other water draining from the upper states while we do the backstroke from West Virginia’s runoff. So now I’m watching as the shore disappears on the other side, soon to be followed by the tree trunks. At least there’s still some light outside, which is good because as I said, the power’s gone here, Jon Stewart cut off in mid-sentence. But my computer battery is full strength so I type on, a real trouper. I’m not making much sense, this is the “Everything But . . .” of blog entires, but by damn, no storm will keep my cold damp fingers from my keyboard.

The light is weird. It’s that greeny-storm-at-dusk light that makes the world look like a fish tank that needs cleaned. And the good news is that it’s a new moon tonight which means that it will be blacker than ink out there once the sun finally sinks through the algaed skies. I know because last night, in the middle of another SBP, I opened the door to encourage the dogs to go out and looked into the Pit. I assume it was the Pit. It was blacker than hell with absolutely no definition. The dogs looked at me and I said, “I’ll put down paper.” I wouldn’t go out in that, either. When it’s so bad that not even Milton will run into it, it’s bad.

Added to that my knee is screwed up again—okay, I screwed up my knee again—and the place is full of Bob’s leftovers. He didn’t even take the rest of the M&Ms, so of course I ate them. The Doritos are still here, but it’s only a matter of time. You’d think if somebody requested junk food, he’d take it with him, but no. He said he had too much to carry already. We’re talking M&Ms, Green Beret. How heavy could they be? Doritos are mostly air, orange dust, and fat. Come on. Still, if this turns out to be the end of the world and I have to hole up here until the undead come for me, the M&Ms would at least have been protein had I managed to ration them. They were peanut M&Ms, of course. What do you think we eat, junk food?

Plus I have this bed to put together. It came after Bob left or things would be very different now. For one thing, I’d have a bed. For another, I’d have good knees. Yes, that’s how my knees went, carrying the twenty-seven pieces of this bed up the stairs. It’s more pieces than twenty-seven but I carried several at a time. I don’t think it’s a good idea to put a bed together in the dark, or even in the dim. Especially with your knees taking their revenge for what you did to them last night. (How are you doing there, Roben?)

The phone just trembled. It didn’t ring, exactly, it kind of whimpered once and then stopped. The last gasp of AT&T. After this it’s blood on the sun and lions whelping in the streets.

Aside from the apocalypse outside, things are going well. Bob put the loveseat together even though the manufacturer had labeled the parts wrong. (I have a picture but as we all know, WordPress has decided I am never to post pictures again.) We brainstormed/wargamed Wild Ride until we were dizzy. We went to the Olive Garden for dinner where our waitress told us she had poison in her foot so she was leaving early and somebody else would be bringing our food. We watched the last four episodes of Supernatural. (Somebody on that show really doesn’t like little girls.) Bob walked down to the river which meant scaling down wood steps that are falling apart, fighting his way through river brush to concrete steps that have pulled completely out of the ground, and then making his way along the narrow exposed shore where the currents are deadly. (I have pictures of that, too.) He said it was very peaceful. He should see it now.

So this SBP is supposed to go until seven and it’s now seven fourteen and we still have storm, although I have a noticed a lessening in the fury. The rain has slowed to a drizzle, and the thunder now sounds more like grousing than the Four Horsemen. Veronica has gone to sleep. And I must finish my Supernatural essay without my notes since I can’t see anything but the computer screen, but at least I’m no longer wondering if This Is The End. It isn’t. I’ll have to put the bed together tomorrow after all. And then there are the Doritos. And the essay. And the two books I’m working on. The important thing is that I didn’t let the storm stop me. I soldiered on. I didn’t pee on the floor.

I take my victories where I can find them.

41 thoughts on “SBP Trouper

  1. I lived in Missouri for eight years, Sister, I feel your pain. Here in Utah? A thunderstorm is just a thunderstorm. In MO I spent many a night in our icky basement waiting for The End of The World as We Know It. Humming the REM song does NOT lighten the mood, unfortunately. Although that eerie green light is kinda cool…

    And although I have never pee’d on the floor, once when both the bathrooms were occupado and I’d been drinking wine I went out and peed in a stall in the barn.

    It’s all good.

    As for the knee I recommend Tylenol and a strapping young teenage boy to haul stuff around, preferably a good looking one. Just remember, it’s okay to admire a beautiful painting, you just can’t take it off the wall and lick it.

  2. I’ve lived most of my life in Tornado Alley. I know that green sky. Creeps me the hell out. Stay safe.

    Do yourself a favor- throw out the Doritos. I spent all day today wishing I’d skipped the junk food. I expect I’ll be paying all day tomorrow, too. Junk food + my stomach= bad news.

  3. Jenny, I really admire your maturity, especially about not peeing on the floor.

    I recommend that you get all the puppies, some ice or a bag of frozen peas, a drink of choice, hop into bed with a good book and stay there. That is the only thing that will fix the knees. You have to stay off them. That means no putting a bed together.

    If you have too, tomorrow you could have your lap top too. 😉

  4. Speaking of ice creams with coherent themes, I highly recommend B&J’s Creme Brulee and Cinnamon Bun flavors. Much better than the everything-but-the-kitchen-sink flavors.

    Stay safe and take care of that knee!

  5. Sounds like exciting times down by the river babe. Glad you didn’t pee on the floor, sorry the knee is uncooperative again. Have to send Bob back to show it who’s boss and put the rest of the furniture together. He’s a handy guy, that Bob.

    Lynda, you are EVIL. And I love you for it.

  6. In front of me: your wonderfully evocative SBP post.

    Behind me: my husband watching a “Monster Quest” episode about giant killer hogs.

    Inside me: two donuts snarfed in a rage against the accounting brochure that won’t write itself.

    Ahead of me: nightmares, for sure!

    Stay dry, stay safe, and stay off — well, you know.

  7. Take a break Jenny, put your leg up and rest it. It seems every time I pass by here, your knee is acting up…again. You need to take care of yourself. Or I’ll get sympathy pains for your knee too. I had them last week for Roben, and she knows.

    We’ll all wait for the photos of Bob making his way down to the water’s edge.

    Storms have a way of creeping into your psyche: the crash and boom of the thunder combined with gale force winds have a tendency to make your nervousness worse. I had a poodle years ago named Jinks who would crawl under the bed and hide when a thunderstorm came.

  8. It could be worse; my brother’s dog, a great big German Shepherd-Collie cross, was flighty even at the best of times, and the minute she heard thunder in the distance, she’d crawl under my mom’s desk and puke.

  9. Love storms! But then I make it a habit of living in areas that are low on trees, makes the sky easier to see.

    The green sky can be scary- actually it scares me now that I live in CO, didn’t phase me in OK because every channel was local weather and they told you down to the intersection where the storms and associated tornadoes were at. Here, they haven’t a clue how to handle them.

    Glad you didn’t pee on the floor. But if you ever find yourself in that situation again JenT has a mug for just that sort of thing, bet she’ll let you borrow it.

    And if you’re looking for a theme in your ice cream I recommend Haagen-Dazs Mayan Chocolate- “inspired by the original chocolate first created by ancient Mayans in 500 BC,… blends the finest cocoa beans with cinnamon to create magical Mayan offering: rich, chocolate ice cream with a fudge swirl and a hint of cinnamon.”

  10. Okay, back up. The waitress had poison in her foot? Was that code for something?
    Stay safe from the SBP.
    Ben and Jerry’s – putting that on my things-to-try-when-I-come-to-California list.

  11. Jenny, could you persuade that storm to head towards Arizona? We are currently under an Extreme Fire Danger Watch–every thing is bone-dry and high winds are blowing. We’ll be lucky if we get nothing worse than a haboob.

    Soldier on, my brave one! You are too young and beautiful to be buried in the Tomb of the Unknown Writer!

    Incidentally, over on Evil Editor’s blog at the end of the month I will be leading a discussion of BET ME. Any chance you might drop by for an hour or so? If there is, we will schedule to suit you, even if it means that half the Evil Minions have to get up in the middle of the night to participate.

    Things have calmed down here. There was a stop-action cat fight going on in the middle of my office–you know how it is: blow, wait, wash, flurry of blows, neutral corners, wash, wait…rinse, repeat… But I heard no hissing, and nobody’s ears were laid back (except mine), so I assume it was just a practice bout.

  12. I live in the Cincy area too. What fun those storms were, with the thunder & lightning that seemed to go on for hours, torrential rain, high winds,and flash flood and tornado warnings that did go on for hours. The storm on Wednesday made it so dark here it could have been 10 PM instead of 6:30PM. It made me jittery enough that I blew off a 7:30 meeting. Worse, I had no M&Ms, only some Drumstick “dipped” ice cream cones for chocolate. But the power never flickered here, so I count myself lucky. And my 17 lb. half-Peke guard dog Phoebe was a rock through the whole thing.

  13. The SBP continued east. Here in Maryland, they started about 3:00 pm. The sky was so dark it looked like twilight. It knocked the power out, so I got sent home from work (no emergency lighting, not safe) to my house without power. My teenagers had no idea what to do with themselves without TV/video games/internet. I felt very pioneerish reading by candlelight but my husband kept trying to talk to me.

    No power still this morning, school is cancelled (which stinks because finals started today). But work has power. Not sure if that is good or bad.

    And oreos are excellent storm food.

  14. I was in the same SBP. Didn’t pee on the floor either. The river near my house (Great Miami) is about to flood. I’m just happy I live on the top of a hill.

    Take care of the knee.

  15. Just reread the post. Okay it would be hard to read a book if you have no light UNLESS you read an E-book. LOL

    I know what I am talking about regarding the knee Jenny. I had to have mine replaced because it got so bad. I hope you can avoid that.

  16. Terrific post, Jenny. Glad you and the pups survived.

    You might want to look into hurricane impact resistant glass.

    Amazing how the Internet triumphs over Mother Nature’s fury. No power, but, damn, you were still online! Way to go.

  17. Geez, you make me miss Ohio! I once experienced a thunder blizzard during which a bolt of lightening took out the transformer at the end of our street while the clouds dumped about 16 inches of snow.

    Just in case one more opinion in the matter – stay off your knees. The bed can wait. If I were you, I’d take the Doritos and the laptop to bed with me. Bliss!

  18. I personally congratulate myself everytime I don’t pee on the floor. You go girl!

    I was born and bred in Los Angeles and your description is perhaps the most brilliant I’ve ever heard.

    Having said that, I know nothing of weather, although last week we did have a tornado touch down about 30 miles from my house. Everyone I’ve ever met called to see if we were ok and I’m like: SHA! I got my earthquake box, my kids are 75 miles away in the opposite direction with my in-laws, I’ve got merlot in a box – I’m good.

    Personally, I think I’ll take my earthquakes over all y’all’s SBPs any day.

    Stay safe!

  19. SBPs on the east coast, too. Possibly the same storms that had West Virginia rain gushing through your river. Sorry about that. My little Maryland neighborhood fared well, although we did have eerie yellow skies for a while; but a coworker in Virginia still didn’t have power this morning and was suffering from caffeine deficiency. Apparently none of the coffee shops in his neighborhood had power either. Oh, and a tornado touched down on the other side of the state.

    I’m in awe of a bed with 27+ parts. Can’t wait to see the pictures once WordPress hands over secret password.

    Beware of Bob saying nice things about your river. Rumor has it he’s thinking of moving again.

  20. Here on the wet coast of b.c. we rarely get any SBPs. It’s kind of a let down. Like the Pacific Ocean can’t muster up the effort to let us know how it really feels about ferries and yachts being all namby pamby in its wake. I kind of miss the pee-on-the-floor SBPs of the prairies. They made you feel alive ’cause you knew you were almost dead.

  21. At least the SBP was truly inspiring. I liked what you wrote about the fish bowl colors and L.A. I wish I could express things like that. But then, we haven’t had a bad storm for awhile and I don’t mind that, either.

  22. This reminds me of the Big Blow of 1995 here (Glendale, AZ), with its 115-mph wind gusts, the horizontal hail, the concrete block fences being blown down, etc.

    After the storm cleared off, I went outside to find that the entire neighborhood had been painted green. The horizontal hail had shredded all the north-side leaves on the areas’s trees (really; the northern halves of the trees were almost completely bare-branched, while the southern sides were barely touched), and deposited the pesto-sized shreds in an even layer across everything. Green sidewalks, green carports, green roofs (with leaves replacing vanished shingles on a lot of houses; our house, which had been re-shingled the year before, was the only house in several blocks that did NOT have to have roof repairs).

    I thought the whole experience was fun. (“Oh, look, honey, the glass patio door is actually bowing inwards from the wind! Cool!”) My wife disagreed. (“Aieee, the glass patio door is bowing inwards!”) This may be one of those Guy Things.

  23. I got into Supernatural after reading the recaps on TWoP. I highly recommend them, if you’re into wasting time and/or peeing yourself laughing.

  24. There you go. Your ghost story idea many blogs ago obviously called up the SBP. Grist for the mill. (Why “grist” for the mill I wonder. Or is grist something like bran? Obviously not good for the tooth enamel. Stick to ice cream.)

  25. hey- don’t blame ALL of wv…the panhandle here gets Ohio’s storm leftovers, flash flooding, high winds, a few tornadoes, etc, etc. And living in the woods dark and deep myself, it’s scary as hell to see the trees bend so much, especially since it is all shale here, so virtually no root system is holding the trees in the ground. Literally, in OHio you have to dig, and dig, to excavate a tree. Over here, not so much…you can just lean against it and push it over. Case in point was the BFT (Big ******* Tree) that landed in my driveway, causing me to park at the end of my driveway and haul 1yr old kid, purse, diaper bag, other bag of stuff, up the 600 foot (gravel) driveway in my new heels.
    This week is looking better. So hang in there, I think I would take peeing over that walk in heels if I had a choice.
    BTW- I laughed out loud reading your blog- so thank you for that.

  26. I needed ice cream products yesterday and went to Whole Foods – and they had the Vosges ice cream! Which I had only ever seen at the Vosges website (and it’s pretty expensive to have ice cream shipped, for obvious reasons)or retail stores. I got the Red Fire (which is probably a bit like the Mayan Chocolate – no fudge, but some chilies in addition to the cinnamon: yummy, with a kick; and the Naga – white chocolate with curry and “sweet young coconut”. In the first bite, I mostly noticed the curry (“Why am I eating curry ice cream?”), but then the coconut came through, and it all made delicious sense. It may only be available at Chicago-area WF, but it may be worth a look if you like your chocolate on the exotic side.

    There are probably more storms headed your way: we had some pretty strong ones last night in Chicagoland, but after I went to bed, so I just got up and closed the window – if you can’t SEE the green sky, it’s a bit less unnerving.

  27. Bob said: “Told her the river was evil. No one listens to me.”

    Does he know something about the river others don’t? Maybe something about Edgar Cayce’s prediction that the Ohio valley will flood? Or was he just ruminating about the rules of demons? I understand Bob and Jenny were working on these for their new book “Wild Ride”.

  28. Fabulous post, that was some kind of storm you guys had, hope the worst has passed. You sure Bob didn’t drop something in the river on his walk? You know, messed with karma and stuff.

    Had the knee surgery this morning. Thanks for thinking of me. I survived. Yay! Now I’m all loopy from the Vicadan. I can even do weight bearing but also have crutches. I’m set up in front of the TV in my leather recliner massage chair and my daughter is waiting on me hand and foot. It’s nice. We just finished watching Moonstruck. That’s a fabulous love story.

    Tonight we’re watching the Laker game. Last night we went to the Beer Garden and watched the Stanley Cup final. Things I rarely do when I’m on my own, it was great people watching too. Son is coming down for the weekend so I’m covered for entertainment, dog walking, cooking, etc. Only problem is no shower until after seeing the Doctor on Monday. Yikes, where’s the male nurse who gives you the sponge bath? I tell you, you hit your fifties and they all disappear.

  29. Yeah, I remember those SBPs. Grew up in tornado alley. Remember one in particular…lightning struck the big old cottonwood next to the house….Thunder shook the whole house.

    All I have to worry about now is the Left Coast dropping off into the ocean.

    Ben and Jerry’s …medicine for everything.

  30. Dontcha know what to do when the storm hits and everyone’s scared and the lights go out. You gather all the kids (dogs) into your bed and grab the guitar and start singing “Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens…”

    Oh. I forgot. Your bed is in 27+ pieces on the floor.

  31. Dontcha know what to do when the storm hits and everyone’s scared and the lights go out. You gather all the kids (dogs) into your bed and grab the guitar and start singing “Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens…”

    Then, after the power returns, you grab the drapes and make play clothes for Veronica, Milton, Wolfie… oh, and Bob, if he needs an extra outfit for the next time he explores the evil river.

  32. Ben and Jerrys? No no no. Graeters Double Chocolate Chip. It’s a religious experience. You’re at the source. You don’t even have to spend $70 for shipping and handling.

    Grew up on the Ohio River. Right on it. Boat ramp. Small beach. Cook outs. Kayak, sail, waterski.

    And there was THAT summer that our entertainment was watching the tornadoes drop from the sky across the river in KY. Hmm… never occurred to us that they could drop down on top of us as well. The name Xenia …

    Boston is getting your SBP, but not so bad. It’s more like a Drizzle of Less Than Memorable Proportions.

  33. As long as the lions aren’t whelping on the new loveseat or the new bed, does it really matter that they are doing it in the streets?

  34. Great restraint not to pee on the floor. LOL

    About the WordPress changeover: Did you look under the title line (on the Add Post page) where it’s blue, and it says, “Add Media”? The first little icon after that is for photos. Click on it and it’ll give you a new window for uploading photos from your computer. Took me a bit to find it as well. Good news is it fixed that weird problem it previously had with putting pics in the middle of posts. Hope that helps!

  35. G and T, letting the lions in sets a precedent.
    Next thing you know, the tigers and bears will start demanding equal street representation, and after that… oh my!

  36. “Our rain just heads for the Mississippi ”

    Thank you ever so…

    Just got back from TX and am now catching up on stuff. In the middle of SBC. Again.

  37. Thanks so much to CC and Diane for the wonderful ice cream recommendations! I’m heading to the frozen food section this weekend.

    Glad you’re on the mend Roben!

  38. I remember Midwest storms…. They are definitely not for the faint of heart! I am especially terrified of tornados and where do you think my silly self went to college? Yep, that’s right–the Midwest!! People here on the Left Coast THINK they have experienced storms. I am here to tell you that NOTHING out here even comes close! I have seen lightning rip across a South Dakota sky that was so bright I could see COLORS! Yeah, exactly! And the wind–whooo! Bought blew us right off the road, and we were in a Chevy Astro van with 8 people in it! Scary stuff…

    You all can have your SBP’s–I’ll stick with my every once in a great while earthquakes, thank you very much!

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