Animators Weathering The Blackout
We sat on the fire escape, played cards by kerosene lamp, read books with flashlights and listened to the now working radio. In the morning, we heard there were parts of the city with electricity, so Marilyn drove to the non-affected area for some coffee (yeah!) and dropped off our overnight guests so they could make it to their homes more easily from midtown. Because we could absolutely do no work (no Internet, no computers, no lights) we spent the morning cleaning up, and started the weekend early when the electricity didn't appear by noon.
By Monday everything was back to normal and we're buzzing again! As far as policies we'll make sure we have batteries, candles, flashlights and lamp oil. Make sure to back up the computers more regularly. Have an old phone we can plug into the jack (unfortunately, only the fax number is plug into-able). Have toys for Jonathan that don't require batteries or electricity. And keep less things in the refrigerator (phew!) And maybe by the kindnesses we showed to others during the blackout, some of that good karma will bring us tons of work soon!
Personally, I was in the middle of a client meeting, said Loop Filmworks director David Chartier. Perfect. We were about to present the client four hard weeks of work (on one of our systems). Brownout? Blackout? Contractors fiddling with wires again? Con Ed asleep at the switch? An hour later we realized it may be something a little bigger than our building, maybe it was the whole block. Sure is getting hot in here. Anybody thirsty? Off to the bar (of course). That's when we found out the real deal. We're in the downtown Brooklyn Waterfront area looking at the Brooklyn Bridge. What a mass exodus. I took the Water Taxi home, fun! Everybody should try that at least once.
I suppose it could have been a lot worse. Fortunately our systems handled it fine, but we are now pricing UPS (backup) systems to compensate for future situations (blackout, brownouts which are not uncommon in the summer months, et al.). This is working under the assumption that our systems probably won't respond so gracefully if this happens again.
Fortunately the weather was fair, but it did make us wonder if everybody would be just as accommodating if it was mid-January and the heat was out as well and people had to walk home in sub-zero temperatures. Just a thought.
I think it is fair to say that this event (hopefully) will spark some legislature to upgrade the nations grid system.
Bill Plympton was in in Portland, Oregon and due back soon to his studio, but office manager John Holderried was unable to get a hold of him. I slept over at my other office last night [Aug. 14], said Holderried. I checked in at Bill's studio at 10:00 am this morning, no one else was there and there was no power. Without AC the studio was too hot to stay in, so I began walking down to the Brooklyn Bridge and across to home in Brooklyn.
So, Bill's studio was closed today [Aug. 15], as most businesses in New York were. That seems to be the only bad news, other than probably some spoiled food in the office fridge.