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Thingish Things

Thanks But No Thanks, Uncle Sam

Written By: William F. B. O'Reilly - Sep• 20•11

Pétionville I’m in trouble with my wife again.  Not a lot of trouble because a.) she is crazy about me for some reason, and b.) I suspect she agrees with me, deep down inside, on the very thing she is mad at me for this time. But I’m marginally in the dog house this week nonetheless.

kitty-cornered It’s not socks under the bed or the wet towel over the door that did it – slightly damp is a better description really – it is the Federal  Emergency Management Authority (FEMA) that put me in bow-wow land this time.  Gotta say, I never saw this one coming.  

FEMA arrived in our village last weekend to give us free money – to give everyone free money.  The reason?  We had a rain storm and a four-day blackout earlier in the month and it spoiled a freezer-full of food and flooded our basement.  (I don’t know if this is an official acronym in texting parlance, but the letters BFD spring to mind.)

We lost a few things because yours truly didn’t listen to, yes, his wife, and pick things up off the floor before the rain began. Three rugs, a couch, a couple of small tables and a dehumidifier later, I was rightfully in trouble.  We also lost half a tree. But that wasn’t my fault.

Nowhere in my town did I see houses floating away. There were no canoes on our main street, no helicopter rescues.  I saw those tragedies occur on television in other communities, mostly in central New York, Vermont,  and Massachusetts, but not in my village. So why was the federal government here in all its trumpeted glory offering us a few pennies back on our tax dollars? Don’t get me wrong, I could really use the money, but under no circumstance can I rationalize it as warranted. 

My wife logically suggested I walk down the hill into town over the weekend and apply for an easy federal payday, but I refused, for several reasons. We did not suffer an emergency; it rained and our basement got flooded.  Half the damage was my fault.  I cannot bear to fill out one more federal form, but, most importantly, don’t insult us.  The federal government is $14.6 trillion in debt; it is borrowing 42 cents on the dollar and screwing our children in the process. Are we supposed to be grateful for a check for $112.68 or something? And now, on top of all that, the feds have gotten me into trouble with my wife. 

I hate to say this to old Uncle Sam, but take your money and shove it.

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