Freedom 90’s

Yesterday’s biggest news story was supposed to be the assassination of the dapper Shinzo Abe, Japan’s former Prime Minister. That should’ve dominated the headlines but it didn’t, because Rogers decided to do the exact opposite of showing up and showing out, falling flat on its face. Thoughts and prayers go out to whoever is manning their customer service phones in the coming weeks. It is not going to be pretty. Yesterday, Rogers absolutely ate shit. Their cellular and internet services went down nationwide, and with it went e-transfers, cashless debit payments and 911 emergency services. Suddenly Canada had been plunged right back into the 90’s, when people paid in cash, there was no internet, and lord help you if you got rear-ended with no payphones in the near vicinity.

It’s one thing to consciously unplug. It’s quite another to have no choice. Personally, I liked it. Can’t say the rest of Canada agreed with me. Judging by the number of mental breakdowns on Twitter, there is no rage quite like that of Canadians unable to pay at a Tim Horton’s. It is not a good idea to get between Canucks and their morning double double.

Then again, I could afford to be pretty blasè about the situation. Rogers is our ISP, but we’re with Freedom for our mobiles, so I still had cellular service, though weak at times. I didn’t feel totally cut off from the world. I am a veteran of blackouts. I am an old. The internet did not arrive in my corner of the Philippines until the late 90s. I still remember how to amuse myself without it. Also, I don’t really drink coffee on the regular. So all in all, it was a nice flashback to a less frenetic way of life. Unable to work, I spent it catching up on my reading and watching whatever was on TV. (White House Down. Channing Tatum in his prime.). Something about not being inundated by streaming choices was strangely relaxing.

So what are my takeaways from yesterday’s Flashback Friday?

  • Always have cash on hand.
  • It’s better to have no internet than have no power.
  • Monopolies are never a good idea.
  • Anything powered by digital tech can get snuffed out in a heartbeat. Ergo, I have decided I am entirely justified in thinking crypto and NFTs are dumb.
  • Monopolies are never a good idea.

Welp, at least the connectivity’s back on again. Rogers still hasn’t quite come out with what caused the blackout, so predictably all sorts of conspiracy theories are out there. Some blamed Russia for it. Please, like Russia has the time. That country is way too preoccupied with Ukraine. The bestie wondered if it was because Boris Johnson resigned. My money is on either sharks, solar storms, or some poor Rogers employee who fell asleep on the keyboard. You know what, scratch that. Here’s who I blame: William Shatner. I blame William Shatner for going to space. William Shatner broke space, made the sun spititng mad, and now satellites are falling out of their orbit. (That piece on solar storms is a fascinating read.) Throw Lance Bass in there too, for wanting to go to space. If I’m going to be irrational here, this is just as good a hill to die on as any.