The Must-Have Appliance for a Changing Planet
November 28, 2012
About 10 years ago, we had an exceptional winter ice storm, followed by an enormous mass of deadly cold arctic air that shut off power throughout much of the state for several days. When it happened, no one could be sure if the power would be off for hours, days or longer. With 2 kids at home, water in the pipes, and food in the fridge, I needed to some up with some kind of emergency power supply.
When I got to my nearby hardware store, there was a line of worried guys like myself, looking for generators. I’ll never forget the faint smell of real fear among the group as they were told that the generators were sold out, and no guarantees for when more would be available. Not available? To hear that in this community had kind of a “you’re not in Kansas anymore” feel.
Here’s where it pays to know your hardware guy. The manager tipped me when another truck would be in, possibly with more units. I managed to snag one, and with some creatively cobbled cable, road out the cold wave with minimal losses. I still have the thing in my garage, but I’ll have to take it in to get serviced before winter sets in – if you don’t run it on a regular basis, it gets gummed up and almost impossible to start.
I must have missed the moment in succeeding years when emergency home generators became a must-have consumer appliance for the suburban home. Was it economic disaster, climate change, or hurricane Sandy that pushed this ad into my youtube stream?
Anyway, good news. The friendly folks at Kohler now have the solution to an unfriendly new weather regime.
With any luck, in coming decades they’ll perfect the Star Trek replicator to produce food and water, as well.