I’ve been watching the coverage of Hurricane Harvey and the unbelievable flooding it is causing. I can’t help but think that God really, REALLY hates Texas. I’m 66 years old and I’ve never seen a hurricane hit land, turn into a tropical storm, go back to sea, hit land again, go back to sea again, and hit land a third time.

The statistics are hard to wrap your head around. As I am writing this, the storm is still going strong and will be for maybe two or three more days. To date, this storm has dropped over 20 TRILLION GALLONS OF WATER ON TEXAS AND LOUISIANA!

Stop now and try to wrap your head around that number.  And it isn’t over yet. There will be more. Estimates are for over 25 TRILLION gallons when this is all over. The weather channel has had to add two more colors to their rain fall charts to adjust to these levels of rain fall.

We need more purple!

The endless scenes of people being rescued reminds me of an old old joke. There is a great flood and a man who is a devout Christian is trapped on the roof of his house.  The local police come by in a canoe and shout out to him to jump off the roof onto the canoe.

“Jump in the canoe!”

He replies: “No, I am a man of God, and my God will protect me!” The police argue with him for a while but he will not relent. Eventually they give up and move on. They have other people to save.

A few hours later, the water is up to his thighs when the State Police come by in another canoe and they tell him to jump in. Again, he states, “No, I am a man of God, and my God will protect me!” After arguing with him for a while they give up and move on.

Another hour goes by and now the water is up to his waist. A Coast Guard Helicopter arrives over his house and a bullhorn shouts out, “We are lowering a basket. Climb in and you will be saved.

Again, he replies, “No, I am a man of God, and my God will protect me!” So, the helicopter leaves because they have other people to save.

Another hour goes by and the water sweeps the man away and he dies. Suddenly he is in heaven at the feet of God. And he is livid. He is furious. He shouts, “GOD! I was a man of faith! I believed in YOU! HOW COULD YOU HAVE FORSAKEN ME???!”

And God looks down at him for a second and says: “Forsaken you?? What the Hell are you talking about?? I sent you TWO CANOES AND A HELICOPTER!!!”

I’m not the first person to notice that what may turn out to be the worst storm in history is hitting an area where a lot of folks there don’t believe in climate change.

I used to do a stand-up comedy routine (shameless plug):

where I talked about working in the news.

My point was that the news was always the same. Every week, somewhere in the world, there was an earthquake, hurricane, tornado, or flood. And no matter where it happened, we would send a news crew to gather a poor family who had just lost all their worldly belongings, set them up in front of their recently destroyed mobile home and ask them THREE STUPID QUESTIONS.

The first was “How do you feel?”

The answer was never the one you would think …

“How do I feel? I just lost all my worldly belongings. How the hell do you think I feel? How do I feel? I feel great!!! I haven’t had this much fun since my last hemorrhoid operation!

The second was “Will you re-build?”

To this question the answer was always, “Oh yes, this is the third time in ten years we’ve been flooded out. We will rebuild.”

And the reporter would say “But why? You’ve been flooded out three times in ten years?”

And they would say “But this is Paradise! This is God’s country!”


I’m telling these jokes because it helps me me deal with the horror of what is going on right now.

What’s happening in Texas now is horrific. Millions of people’s lives are being thrown into unimaginable chaos and despair. Global warming, global climate change is real. The NOAA and the weather channel label these storms as storms of the century, the floods are 100-year floods, 500-year floods. Harvey is being called a 1000-year flood. But it’s not. Hurricane Sandy was a Super Storm that was a 500-year event. And that was FIVE YEARS AGO!

Hurricane Harvey’s flooding is not a 1000-year event. It’s next year’s event. Maybe next month’s. The hurricane season isn’t over yet. Do you think that maybe God is, in fact, sending us a message?

PS: In case you’re curious, what was the Third Stupid Question?

“What did the tornado sound like?” And you all know the answer.“ It sounded just like a freight train going right through our living room.”

That’s a whole other blog.


  1. Garry covered these events all over New England for more than 30 years and HE always asked the same questions because that’s what the news director wanted. What amazed him was that everyone was going to rebuild. MY question is: who sold them insurance? Seriously, after all those times of having their homes washed away — again — who sold them insurance? Gave them a mortgage?

    In Houston, it’s even more tragic because it wasn’t an area normally subject to flooding, so many (maybe most) people didn’t have flood insurance. They are so screwed.

    Houston was one of a very few cities with no development laws. Anyone could build anything anywhere … so they paved everything. All the places water would usually drain were cemented over. Granted in this kind of storm, there would always be flooding. That’s an insane amount of water, but if they hadn’t paved the entire city, it wouldn’t be as bad. Like those bad levees in Louisiana. We did it again.

    We build. God laughs. We rebuild. He laughs more.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s truly awful — and there is a reason (or several) that I live in California rather than in the Southeast. But it fascinates me that our current heat wave is a system which controls the lack of movement of Harvey in the Southeast. Climate change is definitely here — we brought it on ourselves!

    Liked by 3 people

  3. World wide news coverage of the terrible hurricane damage in Texas/Louisiana – not so much on Bangladesh where 2/3rds of the country is flooded, 950 dead and counting and 40 million people have been directly affected (homes/farmland lost) by monsoons. But that happens regularly there.

    To put Texas into more context: i live in paradise with unbelievable weather almost all year round, but we get more rain than either London,UK or our southernmost capital – Melbourne, both places famous for wet weather. Houston has had more rain in three days than we get all year! Almost twice as much in fact.

    A report said Houston’s worst rainfall day was not just an all time record – it was TWICE the previous record for 24 hour rainfall. I have a feeling the record won’t be lasting for very long.

    Houston, we have a problem!

    The loss of life is intensely distressing for all, as is the loss of housing and possessions, but in an area of that size maybe God is watching out for Texans if only some 30,000 or so have sought refuge in a city with a population of some 2.5 million? How are Galveston and Port Arthur still even in existence since both have an ‘elevation’ above sealevel of about 8 feet?


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good points. This is happening all over the world. Just as scientists predicted. Problem is Americans only know about other countires only until after we invade them.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. A number of your fellow citizens certainly do seem quite inward looking and isolated as far as awareness of world events and places are concerned and this then, by extension, applies to ‘Americans’ in general.

        A fact i consider quite strange considering that (just like Australia) 98% of you can trace your origins to ‘foreign’ countries – the countries of your heritage and ancestry?


        Liked by 1 person

          1. It remains to be seen, but we are being told on the west coast that the effect of Harvey on our gas prices will be only a few cents, and not as bad as elsewhere in the country — perhaps because we have our own not very reliable refineries.


            1. And we have quite a lot of refineries on the east coast … New Jersey is famous for the stink of them. I’m pretty sure we have a couple right here not far from Boston Harbor. So it’s the middle of the country that is going to get the big whacko.


    1. And in California we will have another 12 cents a gallon added in taxes to repair roads (on top of the last tax to repair roads, which was used for other purposes. This happens in November!

      Liked by 1 person

        1. I remember that about Canada. But at least you get something back. We pay less tax, but we get less of everything. No medical, no support services. In a small town like this one, we don’t have sewers or even a landfill to dump junk. AND our supposed “leaders” seem to just take the money and make it disappear, so there’s never any money to build anything we need. We’re up to our necks in debt for the high school and we never quite got around to inviting businesses to settle on our one main road.

          We used to be in Rotary and everyone was all excited about getting some bigger companies to move in — as other villages and towns have long since done. That was more than 15 years ago. Nothing got done. Not even a mini mall.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Forget about malls, Marilyn, they are a dying fad. Everything is changing and we need to do a rethink on how economies work, how people work, how we live and run our societies. We are in a deindustrialization revolution.


            1. It’s just that we have absolutely NOTHING but empty land and we need at least a few shops. And yes, we could use a small mall that contained useful places to shop. We have very little shopping and some some things, you really need “hands on.”

              Liked by 1 person

  4. When we first moved to Long Beach New York we lost our car in a storm. During Sandy, we lost our house. I now live in Las Vegas NV. Not because of the gambling but because it rarely rains out here in the desert. And so far, no hurricanes!

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Its certainly tragic. My daughter’s best friend is flooded out in Houston. Having said that, I have often wondered why people rebuild in areas known for flooding, hurricanes etc. If you have to start over, why not where there is less likelihood of the same happening again. I dont know, is it me, is it foolhardy to rebuild, is it tenacity? I’m not sure.


    1. Personally, I think it’s stupid. So does Garry. What I don’t understand is how these people get mortgages and insurance. You’d think they would say no after a while, wouldn’t you?


  6. Thank you for the humor. I thought of that old joke the other day. And one my dad used to tell about the man who was hanging from a cliff about to fall and he prayed to God to help him. God said would you do anything I say? And the man said Yes. God said Let go of that cliff. And the man said “sh****t”. And I thought of a line from the movie “Mozart”-“What was God thinking?!” All is know for sure is that sometimes life on planet earth sucks, sometimes.

    Liked by 1 person

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