Thursday, April 30, 2009

Preparing for Doomsday

My husband is extremely well adjusted and normal, with just a few little quirks to make him interesting.  One of those little quirks is an obsession with disaster preparedness.  Although that is probably just a symptom, the actual trait is more like extreme caution bordering on paranoia.  A couple of years ago, when Homeland Security Chief Michael Chertoff told the nation that although there was no definitive proof, he just had a funny feeling that a terrorist attack was imminent and gave us all a check list of items so we could "shelter in place," Kevin ran out immediately and bought every item of the checklist, including:
Surgical masks
Jugs of water
Massive jars of peanut butter (which Kevin explains packs the most punch, nutrition and calorie-wise)
Plastic sheeting and duct tape to seal windows and doors in the event of a dirty bomb
Latex gloves
We still have most of these items, except that I ate the PB already (duh) and used some of the masks in my own paranoid days, early in Charlotte's life.  

And now we have the swine flu. Kevin is once again at his vigilant best/worst.  He keeps me fully abreast of how serious the situation is so that I will not think him crazy when he arrives home with a car load of canned goods (Charlotte is too young to eat PB so there goes that brilliant plan).  I'm thinking, gee, it's a flu, it's not ebola.  I think we will be able to run to the store for some cereal.  But he argues that if people panic (um, like maybe he is?) and no one goes to work, the entire food distribution system in the United States will grind to a halt and there will be nothing on the store shelves and a piece of bread will buy a Mercedes Benz.  Did you know that New York City only has a one day food supply at any given time? Yes, and so this scenario could unfold within 24 hours and the entire city will then starve to death.  It's true.  

Now, there's really only one thing crazier than Kevin's reaction to the swine flu threat, and that is my reaction to Kevin's reaction to the swine flu threat.  For some reason, a swine flu pandemic doesn't have me up at night, but the prospect of my house being filled with canned goods that we will likely never need does.  When he broaches the subject with me, I go ballistic.  Even though he is not asking me to do anything--he is going to go to the store and haul around tons and tons of canned chicken soup.  He will put it all in the basement somewhere, and I can sit and file my nails.  There really is no reason for alarm.  Nevertheless, I go ballistic.  I myself have a difficult time understanding why, but I think in my mind, he will be introducing a large quantity of new "stuff" into the house, the order of which is my responsibility.  As it is, I spend large portions of every day managing all the stuff we already do have in the house, trying to keep it in its proper place and making sure it doesn't smother us in the night.  These canned goods--How do we know what they will do once they have access to the house?  Even if Kevin neatly boxes them up and puts them away somewhere, I have no doubt they will soon find a way to clutter up my house and my life.   What if they form an alliance with the Baby Gear?  Now THAT'S a doomsday scenario my friends.    

At the end of the day, we are all just a little, teeny bit insane.  

2 comments:

  1. Omigosh, Kevin and Chris are soulmates. Chris stockpiles everything and never wants to throw anything away. "But what if I NEED those phone bills from 1999?" (I am not making any of this up.) "Or Marissa's student loan receipts from 1997? Or the 50 t-shirts I've had in a box since 2001? Or my physics homework from 1982?"

    I have told him that if he dies in a plane crash, the first thing to go after the cats are all his boxes in the basement and I am NOT EVEN GOING TO OPEN THEM FIRST. STRAIGHT INTO THE TRASH.

    PS Would you please remove the verification whatever from comments? It is such a pain in the neck! I have to go into a different browser!

    ReplyDelete
  2. The reason I have to go into a different browser is because the little password doesn't show in firefox or google chrome, even though I can log into blogger into both those apps. I mean, really!

    ReplyDelete