Eine Kleine Nichtmusik

Witty and pertinent observations on matters of great significance OR Incoherent jottings on total irrelevancies OR Something else altogether OR All of the above

Sunday, June 30, 2013

What, me worry?

I was watching a documentary on STV about Americans and their love of guns, and it reported the chilling (and surprising, to me) statistic that there is a mass shooting in the USA (defined as one with more than four fatalities) every four weeks. To judge from this report and this one that would seem about right.

So there will probably be one while we're in the USA.

However, the odds of my being anywhere near it are extremely small. In the same way, there are on average 140 tornadoes in the USA every July, with around half of them in parts of the USA we'll be passing through. Thrilled though I should be to see a real tornado, I've no desire to be run over by one. (In the same way I shall obtain a horrid pleasure from visiting an American gun shop, though I have no desire to be shot.) It isn't likely, though: we'll be in Tornado Alley for only a few nights, and most tornadoes fall far short of the monster that took out chunks of Oklahoma City last month. For that matter, we'll be in Oklahoma City, site of the second worst act of terrorism in US history, and visiting Meteor Crater in Arizona. Will I be panicking about being bombed by a PTSD-crazed vet, or smitten from on high by an errant rock?

Do I look like the sort of person who buys lottery tickets in the hope of winning? (The National Lottery - a concept, incidentally, invented by Giacomo Casanova, who sold his idea to the French government - has been accurately described as a tax levied on those who are lousy at maths.)

No. And no.

I know several British people who were as amazed as I was, howewer, to find that Oklahoma still doesn't require new buildings to have tornado shelters. They could, after all, do double duty as "crazed gunman" shelters. (Though they'd be fuck-all use against even a small meteorite.)

Then of course there are the hazards you really can't plan for...

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