Commentary

I survived the solar eclipse … and the media hype

By From page A5 | September 06, 2017

Hard to believe, but it’s true. I survived the solar eclipse. With all the usual media hype promoting the natural disaster in the making, I was ready to order my bunker and stock up on food, water and fuel for the generator.

It never fails. The national media begins the countdown to disaster, the potential death and mayhem. The impending solar eclipse could cause power outages, hospital emergency rooms would be overwhelmed and the National Guard would be on standby in many states.

Does this sound familiar?

Remember all of the Y2K hype? Economies around the world were predicted to collapse, financial institutions would be disrupted and major electrical grids would fail when the date on the calendar changed. Nothing happened and life went on as usual.

Not sure what we should be more concerned with these days, the OJ Simpson pardon countdown or which celebrity is getting divorced or having another baby. It appears the Russian invasion of our election process has been put on hold with the media now focused on the presidential pardon of Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

Is it any wonder why so many people today don’t believe the media hype? The National Enquirer is beginning to look like a rational publication compared to other major newspapers and those in the reality TV world.

So when news stories appeared forewarning me of the devastating consequences of the solar eclipse I shrugged them off. The few glances I made upward did cause me to squint and lose focus for a few seconds. An eerie dimness cast over the landscape but the sun was still visible. It was a partial eclipse so what was the big deal?

A friend called me to report a casualty occurring at the time of the eclipse. It happened in downtown Placerville.

A young woman spranged her ankle stepping off the curb.

“Was she looking up at the solar eclipse?” I asked the caller.

“No, she was looking down at her cell phone, sending a photo of those watching the eclipse to her friends,” he said.

An employee visiting family in South Carolina returned and mentioned traffic being backed up for miles. Of course this wasn’t during the actual eclipse. It was a backup by those leaving the venue where everyone gathered to watch the natural phenomena.

Is it possible the major television networks own shares in the souvenir T-shirt business? Be prepared to see someone wearing an “I survived the solar eclipse 8/21/17” T-shirt.

Let’s face it, we’re all survivors. We survived eight years of the Obama administration. And I’m pretty sure we’re going to survive global warming, climate change or whatever they’re calling it these days.

The next total lunar eclipse is slated for Jan. 31, 2018. Watch for the previews of this apocalyptic event on your favorite network television channel. I’m ordering my T-shirt well in advance and will continue stockpiling rations for my new bunker when it arrives.

Richard Esposito is publisher of Village Life and the Mountain Democrat.

Richard Esposito

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