"Okay, nobody panic. We prepared for this."
"Of course we paid the bill!"
"You did pay the bill, didn't you?"
"I never doubted you."
"Well, they asked, and that made me wonder."
"Buddy, go see if the neighbors' lights are out."
"There, see? Either the power is out on the street, or everyone on the block didn't pay their electric bill."
"No, of course not. What are the odds of that happening?"
"Well, no, I don't actually know. That's something your grandfather would know. He taught statistics."
"No, I'm not going to call him."
"Of course I charged it. There's just no point in wasting my cell battery just to call my dad."
"Because he won't actually know the odds of 10 families not paying their electric bill on time."
"If you want to know, you figure it out."
"No, don't look it up!"
"And don't ask Siri. She won't know either."
"Because she's just a voice-activated computer program. Besides, it wastes battery power."
"Sweetie, don't play games on your phone."
"I know Netflix is out."
"Because the power is out."
"Were you even listening before? We paid it."
"Look, the hurricane knocked out the power. That's it."
"So don't waste your battery playing games."
"Yes, the batteries are charged up. But those are for emergencies."
"Not having Netflix is not an emergency."
"No, Buddy, we don't have a battery for the TV."
"For one thing, it would be pretty big. "
"Well, I didn't feel like spending several hundred dollars just to watch TV."
"Yes, and the Apple TV."
"No, you can't watch it on your laptop."
"The wifi is off."
"Yes, we paid our cable bill!"
"For one thing, the wifi router runs on electricity."
"No, we need the cable box."
"I know the rabbit ears would work."
"Because the — you know, go ahead and get them. They're in the garage."
"The flashlights are on the entry table."
"I put new ones in yesterday."
"Check in the green tubs. I think it's in the one marked 'Electronics.'"
"No, I'll let him figure it out."
"Got them? Great, now just unplug the cable from the TV."
"That's right. And that cable goes into the TV."
"Remote's over there. Your sister has it."
"Don't shine the light in her eyes."
"Not in my eyes either."
"Really? Why do you think that is?"
"Because the TV runs on electricity."
"Yes, the whole house runs on electricity."
"No, Honey, you can't call your friends."
"What good are they going to do us? They're in Indiana. Safe, dry, hurricane-free-for-six-billion-years Indiana."
"Because I don't waste you to your battery right now. We may need it to communicate during an emergency."
"Look, it's really simple, you guys. No calls, no Netflix, no FaceTime, no Skype, no texting, no games, and no Netflix."
"I know I did. You weren't listening when I started."
"No, no Hulu either. That chews up the data plan."
"We need to conserve the power for a real emergency. Not having a TV is not a real emergency. We can read, play games, or just talk to each other."
"You could always go to bed."
"Then find a book."
"Man, it's getting warm in here."
"Yes, I know the power's out!"
"Oh God! We don't have any air conditioning! This is terrible. Quick, go outside and see if you can plug the battery pack into the AC unit."
"I don't know. Ask Siri!"
"I'm not kidding around! This is a real emergency! Where's the fan? Someone plug the fan in."
"What do you mean, it won't work?"
"Did you pay the bill?!"
Photo credit: Satellite image of Hurricane Earl approaching Belize on August 3, 2016. Taken by Naval Research Laboratory Monterrey, NASA (Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain)
You can find my books Branding Yourself (affiliate link), No Bullshit Social Media, and The Owned Media Doctrine on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Books-A-Million, or for the Kindle or Nook.