Good morning, good lookin! I have a controversial thought, so thanks in advance for giving me a pass. I’m grateful to have the freedom to express this thought without having an avalanche of judgemental shame dumped on top of me and whatnot. You’re too kind.
This year’s barrage of hurricanes has been borderline apocalyptic. Wait for it – that’s not the controversial thought. As you know, another slew of decent names have fallen along with damaged property, and millions of Americans are still without power and clean water. It’s an effing nightmare, and I’m not trying to make light out of a dire situation.
But, like, I’m from Florida, and hurricanes are kinda our thing. Why are they suddenly so prevalent outside of everyone’s favorite swing state?
Listen, I’m not usually so territorial, nor am I necessarily a proud Floridian (because cargo shorts, flip flops, and fishing supply shop t-shirts as everyday wear), but I do recognize that there was but one thing that stopped people from making jokes about our penis-shaped land that occasionally foils elections, if only for a short time.
That thing is the destructive hurricanes that ravage the state every year, so much so that it is referred to as ‘hurricane season.’ One year, the inland county where I was raised got hit by 5 hurricanes within a month. If said storms were so horrific that they made national headlines, then we got sympathy.
People halted the ‘Florida man’ jokes and donned camo-inspired clothing in solidarity. There were even rumors that we could start saying “I’m from the south” without people being like “Florida isn’t in the south,” because apparently genitalia-shaped states aren’t allowed to associate with any region whatsoever.
Except during hurricane season, y’all. All bets are off during hurricane season.
Then, suddenly, other states wanted in on the action. It started innocently enough. Hurricane Irene hit New York in 2011, and my fellow Floridian transplants and I were like, “come again? We thought we moved away from this shiz.” There hadn’t been a storm of that magnitude in the northeast is 39 years.
Then, one year later, Hurricane Sandy showed her busted face in New York and was the deadliest and most destructive storm of the year. Like, is this a thing now?
Hurricane Harvey hit Texas a couple of months ago, and the damage was devastating. The last recorded hurricane that even came close to Harvey’s damage was 9 years ago, but the last time a category 3 or higher storm hit Texas was 18 years ago.
There’s a hurricane headed towards Ireland right now, which is ‘the most powerful storm this far east of the US on record.’ There hasn’t been a storm this bad in more than 50 years.
I know I’m not even covering the half of it – obviously Hurricane Katrina was horrific and deserves a mention, but so much of the continental US has been hit with hurricanes, and the frequency is much too often and too severe.
Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands know that we (begrudgingly) share ‘our thing’ with them, but it’s well known that tropical storms are no strangers to island life.
Now, I’d like to think I’m a generous person, but in this instance I’d prefer not to share. Hurricanes are Florida’s thing. We’re used to it, and we enjoy the annual camo-donning-in-solidarity, ok? It’s kinda our thing, and we’d like to keep it that way.