If you’re in the cone of uncertainty, you’re at risk. Hurricane forecasts are uncertain, and this uncertainty is graphically represented by the cone of uncertainty around the central “best guess” forecast positions.
Our friends and neighbors in NOLA, and residents all over the entire Gulf Coast are in that cone right now, and I know from experience what that’s like. Trust me, it’s not comfortable, to say the very least. Watching, waiting, wondering when and if you should act, wondering if you can afford the expense, trying to play it safe and not get caught in the last minute frenzy but also not wanting to spend money and resources you probably can’t afford if you don’t have to.
So, if you’re not in that place, if you have the luxury of having being able to think about something else, what can you do?
For one thing, if you have room in your house and you live close to the Gulf Coast, call your friends in the strike zone and let them know you’ve got room for them if they need it.
But no matter where you live, realize this much is certain:
Realize that someone, whether they are your friends or not, is going to get hit. Realize that Jamaica and the surrounding islands are being torn up by Gustav as you read this, realize especially that Cuba is almost sure to suffer a devastating storm surge, no matter what. Realize that after that, Gustav will sit and recover, then keep on coming and wreak more damage, closer to home.
Realize that right now is the time to make your online donations, buy groceries for the food bank shipment, look up who in your community is putting together the truckloads of clothing and food and water, and if no one is, then maybe you could start.
Just do it. Because it’s certain that people, whether it’s your friends and neighbors or not, need that help as soon as it’s humanly possible to get it to them.
Millennia ago, back before the Interwebz, when dinosaurs roamed the earth, there was a particular classified ad in the Austin Chronicle miscellaneous section, the heading of which was I Danced on Stage with Bono! The person who had run the ad, and who had danced on stage with His Eminence, was desperately seeking photographs of this singular event in her life from anyone that might have been there. It ran for, possibly, years. I remember my cronies in the back of the Half-Price Books on Guadalupe (for the uninitiated, the store that served as the backdrop for the scene with the Kennedy assassination buff in Slacker ) reading the classifieds and joking about it.
She still hasn’t found what she’s lookin’ for, heh.
Can’t she just go to another concert, like, with a camera this time?
yeah, for real.
I mean, man, I hope this chick has, like, other interests in life, ya know?
So, anyway, for most likely entirely unrelated reasons, I thought of that when Athenae sent me this.
Just in time for the closing rush of the presidential election, MSNBC is shaking up its prime-time programming lineup, removing the long-time host –- and one-time general manager of the network — Dan Abrams from his 9 p.m. program and replacing him with Rachel Maddow, who has emerged as a favored political commentator for the all-news cable channel.
Photo by by Ashton Worthington
Via Feministing, an anonymous reader, who happens to be a pharmacist at an unidentified Wal-Mart, brings up a behind-the-pharmacy-counter horror story.
Here’s a bit of background: We have a male pharmacist who works at our store and he is a fundamentalist, Conservative (yes, with a capital ‘C’) Christian. We have 2 female pharmacists and our former manager was male. All of the pharmacy techs at our store are women, ranging in age from 25 to 45, most married/divorced with children.
When Plan B went over the counter a couple of years ago, the Conservative pharmacist brought in a couple of things he had found on ‘pro-life’ websites that said Plan B was an abortifacient. He had talked to our manager at the time about his feelings on the matter and the fact that he didn’t want to dispense Plan B, citing his religious beliefs.
Okay, you say, we’ve heard this story. Guy’s a fruitcake zealot. One at every pharmacy, right? Is he the only person behind the counter? Why, as a matter of fact, he is not. None of the other pharmacy employees, all women, had a problem with dispensing Plan B.
And neither did the store manager.
And as some of you may already know, Wal-Mart has an official policy for this situation:
Wal-Mart’s official policy, however, is that even if no one in the pharmacy wants to sell Plan B, we have to have it stocked on the shelf.
So, what’s the problem? Emphasis below, mine.
The manager did not have a problem selling it, but he thought that the best thing to do would be to not stock it at all, that way the Conservative pharmacist wouldn’t be put in a situation where he felt compromised.
The women in the pharmacy, despite our political and/or religious beliefs, all agreed that we had no problem selling it, if for no other reason than the fact that there may be a girl or woman who needs Plan B because she has been raped. But this one particular pharmacist has blocked it. We are not allowed to order it, and if some does come in our order from the warehouse, he immediately arranges for it to be sent back to the warehouse. If someone calls asking for Plan B, we’re supposed to say that we’ve run out of stock. I‘m ashamed to admit that I have told people this, but I do always refer them to one of the many other pharmacies in town (there are literally about 30 others, ranging from small independents to large chains, some that are open 24-hours) that definitely carry it. We had a woman bring in a prescription for her 16-year-old daughter for Plan B, and we had to tell her to go to another pharmacy.
I also wanted to say that it’s not just Plan B that pharmacists will refuse to fill/dispense. There have been 2 specific occasions that I can recall where women have brought in prescriptions for Cytotec (misoprostol) and a pain pill, which is often used when women have had a miscarriage to pass any tissue that may be left. This pharmacist immediately began to question the doctor’s prescription and whether it was being used to cause an abortion.
As truly odious as that last bit is, I still think the real villain in this piece is the manager. Guy violates a company-wide policy, changes the supply situation, instructs employees to lie, and refuses a vital service to deserving customers.
All this to accommodate one pharmacist w/ a personal religious issue.
Oh, and, in the why-am-I-not-surprised department,
This pharmacist apparently has NO problem dispensing birth control or Viagra/Cialis/Levitra, however.