Sunday, May 2, 2010

Worst Case Scenario?

Occasionally, on the weekends, I will stumble across an opportunity to get caught up on the news. The things I don’t hear about during the week watching Dora the Explorer and Sid the Science Kid. Though, in Sid’s defense, he is pretty in the know. Today, I saw a lot of coverage on the oil spill. And I know what you’re thinking, c’mon Heather, there’s nothing funny about an oil spill. And I wish you were right, but you’re not. For starters, there were some suits sitting around in one of CNN’s mission control centers discussing the effects of this “catastrophe”. And one heavily titled and credentialed expert said, “Worst case scenario we won’t have any shrimp.” Really? Shrimp? Because even just hearing about the oil spill, I was thinking that gas prices may climb up near that travel-inhibiting four dollars a gallon mark. Don’t get me wrong, I like shrimp. I can’t remember the last time I had shrimp because they don’t really go with Kraft macaroni and cheese, but I do enjoy them. Still, I’m not quite as concerned about what I’ll have to dip in my cocktail sauce as with what I’ll have to fill my minivan tank with once it becomes a decision between filling up or paying the electric bill.

And who spilled the oil? BP. The British. Don’t get me wrong, I like the Brits. But if this is a stunt to pay us back for throwing their stupid tea in the water a long time ago, I’ll be upset. And guess who’s down there cleaning up this mess? The U.S. Coast Guard. Not the Brits. I mean, I’m sure they’ll be right over, as soon as they finish their tea.

In light of our overdependence on oil, which is akin to a crackhead’s overdependence on cocaine, maybe we should be a little more careful about spilling the oil. If we’re going to mishandle something, it should be a resource we could do without for a bit, like cauliflower. Because I fear limited choices at Red Lobster may not be the only consequence we face for this snafu. I’m wondering about the beaches on the Gulf Coast and how they’ll look with a fresh shellacking of oil and decomposing sealife.

And some seaweed hugger, on another news program today, was warning of how this would affect turtles and manatees. Manatees, for those who don’t know, have already had a rough go of it. They’re endangered, or at least an alternate on the endangered list, because they’re a little bit like the drunk uncle of the deep seas. Always swimming along, having a great time, but never seeing straight enough to notice all those boats on the surface, which they frequently “bump” into, causing everything from a bad hangover to a trip to that big old aquarium in the sky. And this isn’t even their only problem. They’ve also earned the nickname Sea Cow, which even though they play it off like it’s funny, really hurts their feelings. And now they have to be worried about oil in their water? I’m not sure the manatee is intellectually equipped to prevent its own oil poisoning. Manatees may not be able to read the “No Bathing” signs the British are coloring and planning to put up. First of all, these are American manatees and they call it swimming. But have no fear, Dora’s cousin Diego is an animal rescuer and I’m sure he’d be happy to pitch in with the relief effort.

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