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power outage
you don't realize how much of your life is geared around electrical light which is from outside your house -- other houses, streetlights, etc. -- until the power for your whole block goes out. It gets really *dark* when that happens.

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BDDTGTTS. My first thoughts when it last happened were roughly "okay, who popped the breaker", "hmm, it's not just us", and "how long until my pie finishes cooking?" (yay gas ovens). Then after a few minutes I phoned up the electricity company to poke them and find out when it was likely to be back (yay mobile phones).

A keyring torch is very useful when that happens. It's possibly the most useful £5 I've ever spent.

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