Mountain Musings


Boom, Boom, Out Go The Lights


I don’t know about you, but I’m getting danged tired of all these power outages we’ve been having around here. I’m talkin’, of course, about the multiple-day outages, beginning on Thanksgiving weekend and continuing through the Christmas holiday period, with some areas suffering as many as six days without power. It was so dark during that first outage that I became fighting-mad because I couldn’t find my baby.


“No kiddin’, I’m ready to fight. I’ve been lookin’ for my baby all night. If I get her in my sight, Boom, boom, out go the lights.” (“Boom, Boom, Out Go The Lights” – Pat Travers – 1979)


Lately, I’ve been living a life that reads like a chapter out of Little House on the Prairie, what with having to use candles and flashlights to see where I’m going and what I’m doing. Not to mention having to use matches to light the burner on the stove in order to cook some soup or canned vegetables because I couldn’t light the oven, not that it even mattered, since most of the food in the fridge and freezer rotted from the lack of power.


Oh, and then there was the heating issue, since there was no power to run the furnace during the sub-freezing weather. Luckily, I have a wall heater that heats one room. Hey, do you know how hard it is to sleep on a waterbed when there’s no electricity? Probably not. And do you think Edison will reimburse you for your unusable, rotted food? Sorry, they say they’re not responsible because it was an “act of God.”


Let me shed some light on this situation (sorry, no pun intended…okay, so it was intended). What Edison needs to do is get its act together and bury their cotton-pickin’ powerlines just like they’re required to do in hundreds of communities throughout Southern California. But they say it costs too much and they can’t afford it. Bull feathers, it doesn’t cost them a cent because the California Public Utilities Commission guarantees them a profit margin of approximately 13 percent, no matter what.


If SCE’s powerlines here on the mountain were underground, it would be impossible (or nearly so) for trees and tree limbs to fall upon them, thus knocking out our power, like what’s been happening all winter.


Someday, when the rest of us have solar or wind power energizing our homes, we will no longer have a need for greedy opportunists like Edison. No longer will we have to worry about our homes burning down like they did when one of their powerlines blew down in 2007, igniting a firestorm that destroyed 200 homes in the Grass Valley area of Lake Arrowhead.


By the way, the company paid dearly for that little episode…many millions of dollars, I’m told. No biggie for Edison, since they were able to recoup their losses by foisting yet another rate increase upon their customers.


Keep it flyin’, Uncle Mott