Florida It Happened to Me Tampa Bay The Current Situation

Hello no-eth my old friend…

I’ve already filled up our portable tanks for our generator with ethanol-free gasoline, in case the power goes out. The gas lines near me were only a little longer than usual, but that was at 10:30 a.m., which isn’t a terribly busy time. If you need gas for your car or generator, get it as soon as possible, because the crowds will get worse as the day progresses, and by tomorrow, all the gas stations are going to be like the old Mad Max movies.

This morning, ethanol-free gas was selling at the Wawa at Florida and Waters (which has 4 pumps that dispense it) for US$4.49 a gallon (CDN$1.62 per litre for my Canadian friends and family).

Gasoline has a limited lifetime — 3 to 6 months — and ethanol-infused gasoline lasts half as long. My typical approach is to stock up on eth-free gas in late August (a little before the hurricanes typically come) and, if I don’t use it in the generator, pour it into the car’s gas tank in December, after the end of hurricane season.

Florida Tampa Bay The Current Situation

Hurricane WATCH vs WARNING, explained with tacos

Taco watch vs. Taco warning:
“Taco watch” features taco ingredients and the caption “The ingredients are in place for tacos to happen.”
“Taco warning” features an assembled taco and the caption “We’re having tacos RIGHT NOW!”
Tap to view at full size

Once again, because a hurricane watch has been announced for Tampa Bay for Tropical Storm Idalia, the graphic above provides a quick explainer for the often-misunderstood terms hurricane watch and hurricane warning…but with tacos!

Simply put:

  • If the atmospheric conditions are ripe for a storm, tornado, or hurricane to occur, weather a services issue a watch. A watch basically says “It might happen; be on the lookout for it.”
  • If a storm, tornado, or hurricane has formed, weather services issue a warning. A warning basically says “It is happening; get to shelter NOW!”

Welcome back, “Suits”!

Scene from “Suits” with Harvey and Donna in his office. The closed captioning reads “I don’t have dreams. I have goals.”
I’ll admit it: this is one of my favorite quotes from the show.

It’s so nice to rewatch the TV series Suits right now! During its time, it was one of my guilty pleasures, partly due to its valorization of both occupational and people skills, and partly because it provided glimpses of my old hometown, Toronto, which (once again) stands in for the show’s setting of New York City.

The cast from seasons 1 through 7.

Suits is back in a big way thanks to Netflix, which is currently showing its first eight seasons (there are nine, but for rights reasons, Netflix can’t show the last one). It’s the latest in a set of old shows — Friends, The Office, Breaking Bad — that got a renaissance thanks to Netflix.

I’ve been binging it as “video wallpaper” in the background while working on articles. You might think that it might be distracting, but I’ve found it to be inspiring and motivating. (I also find that if I’m ever stuck on a programming problem, putting the original Iron Man movie or the audiobook version of The Martian in the background gets me un-stuck.)

And of course I’m a fan of the show. Where do you think Harvey Specter gets his style tips from?

funny Tampa Bay

This is the only time I’ll tell you to vote for Ron DeSantis

The 2023 edition of Creative Loafing’s “Best of the Bay” is now open for votes, and you can select the best people, places, and things here in Tampa Bay. You may be amused to know that Ron DeSantis is one of the candidates for the “Best Stripper” category.

You know what to do, and here’s where you do it. Let’s make it rain!


Sign of the day: Are you sure about that, Trader Joe’s?

Chalkboard at Trader Joe’s that reads “Keeping it simple...Producer → Trader Joe’s → You...No middleman!”

Think of this as yet another of my reminders to double-check your reasoning, or better still, have someone else to double-check it.


Florida history teacher job interview

Florida does have a history of slavery, and it joined the Confederacy, a fact that Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis, is whitewashing, in an attempt to throw some political red meat to an increasingly radicalized, repressive, and racist Republican base of voters, which in turn is a smokescreen for a cronyist agenda.

One “achievement” of DeSantis’ is Florida’s new history curriculum, which includes the old “slavery may have been beneficial” excuse. Florida’s public schools will now teach that some Black people benefited from slavery because they may have learned useful skills while being used as forced unpaid labor.

So be warned: if you’re planning to teach high school history here in the Sunshine State, be prepared for a job interview that goes like this:

And hey, if you think Florida’s curriculum is all right, come do an internship with me sometime. I have some yardwork that’s best done in the midday sun, and I’ll only whip you because I care about your career advancement.

Further reading: