Monday, October 17, 2005

Wall Street Wilma

Wilma made an appearance on Wall Street this morning as oil rose 2% in early trading on fears of another Gulf Coast hurricane. We have talked quite a bit about the status of the oil rigs and refineries on this blog. Expect to see gas prices at your local pump rise this week if this storm makes it into the Gulf as a hurricane.

Wilma also tied the record for number of active tropical systems in one season as it reached tropical storm status. Our next system will be named "alpha". Overnight, Wilma continued on more of a southerly course which has prompted the issuing of tropical storm watches for the coast of Honduras. The longer Wilma heads south and delays a shift to the west then north, the more the central Gulf coast comes into play. We will see the models continue to bounce all over the place in the coming days. Another hurricane into the rigzone and we will all pay the price for it.


1 comment:

Ron Franscell said...

From Media blogger and Rita survivor Ron Franscell @ ...

As Tropical Storm Wilma gathers strength in the Caribbean and takes aim at -- of course -- the U.S. Gulf Coast, it's starting to feel a little like a slasher movie. This monster just won't die.

At the moment, anything is possible once Wilma slithers into the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico. She could skulk toward Texas or sneak up on the Florida Panhandle ... or just slice head-on into the soft underbelly of Gulf Coast at New Orleans and Mississippi, again.

When I first came to Southeast Texas, people were surprisingly sanguine about the threat of hurricanes. Maybe it's because it had been almost 20 years since a hurricane hit here. They oozed a certain resignation to the inevitability of a catastrophe, saying such things as "That's what insurance is for" and "It's only a house." Indeed, now that Rita has slit us from crotch to collarbone, my neighbors (some of whom are not even insured) simply set themselves to the task of rebuilding and restoring their homes and their lives the best they can. TV shines its light on a few people whining that FEMA and the Red Cross and the church on the corner and the people who sell groceries and all the ships at sea have somehow betrayed them, but for the most part, I see people making their own remedies.

But I wonder, as we closely watch the prowling Wilma, if anyone is still as sanguine. As I picked up some broken shingles, glass shards and fallen branches in my backyard this morning, I wondered: Should I just leave them until Wilma passes ... or maybe longer, until after the hurricane season has gone into hibernation at the end of November? Should I just leave the fences on the ground rather than replace a brand-new fence after the next storm? Or should I simply surrender -- like my friends and neighbors -- to the inevitability of hurricanes and deductibles and turbulence of all kinds ... and live as well as possible in between?

Aw, hell, it's only a house.