The end of our system’s lifespan is nigh

Dear President Biden,

We’re starting Day 3 of our weather-related, housebound holiday vacation and as grateful as I am that we have a house in which to be bound and that the power has somehow stayed on throughout, this is not exactly the winter break we’d envisioned. Fortunately we got two hikes in on Christmas day and we’re counting this as something of a saving grace given that really, all either of us want to do anymore is be out in the woods.

And, looking outside the window, it is beautiful here. And, the store is within walking distance as is the light rail so in our still-almost-exclusively-White, formerly green-lined neighborhood, we’re essentially doing just fine.

And, it is still treacherous out there…. Late yesterday evening we got a text from our close friend letting us know she was going by ambulance to the ER after breaking her ankle on a dog-walk. Laura went down to the ER to be with her (via the light rail) and didn’t get home until after 3am – she’s still asleep – and our friend is scheduled for surgery next Monday. Poor dear. Thankfully omicron hasn’t swamped the system (yet?) and they’re still scheduling surgeries.

Just now (9:15am on Day 3) I saw the first snow/ice mitigation effort by the city in the form of an SDOT truck scattering sand on the arterial in front of our house. I’m 99% certain that no plowing had previously happened on this arterial this round of winter weather and I’m 100% certain the sidewalks and side streets are all still covered with snow and ice – because they are!

Well, now 8 minutes later, I just saw the third SDOT sand truck chug by on the very same arterial in front of our house laying down yet a third layer of sand – no wonder everything else is such a mess. And to be clear, no snow has fallen in the past 8 minutes so it’s not as though they are trying to keep ahead of freshly falling snow.

Assuming that the system is working as designed, I think it’s safe to say that an exceptionally detail-oriented, sadistic mad man designed the system.

Along the lines of our system working as designed, I was going to detail out my findings on “oldest democracies” today – I just spent a chunk of time organizing things in table form for you – but I think I’ll save it for another day this week. The temperatures aren’t supposed to get over freezing until Thursday (when more snow is forecast) so we aren’t going much of anywhere for the foreseeable future and I’ll have plenty of time on my hands to do that letter justice. Instead, I’m going to mobilize and coax dog-Buddy out for an exceedingly brisk (careful) walk up and down the block.

May we all stay safe and upright.
May we all come around to seeing that we maintain houselessness to keep the machine going.
May we all have the courage and strength to reset around trust, respect, and care.
May we accept that we’re fast approaching the end of our system’s lifespan.

Tracy Simpson

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: