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The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

How to survive a PG&E power outage, millennial style

So your house or apartment’s power got shut off because PG&E can’t get their fecal-matter together. You’re sitting in the dark bored and annoyed and you are desperate for something to do to fill your time. Here is some unsolicited advice on what to do during a blackout by someone who hasn’t had to deal with this problem at all.

The first one is obvious: get out of the house and enjoy the outdoors. I know what you’re thinking: “but, like, walking and doing stuff is a lot of work.” I feel that on a spiritual level but nonetheless it beats sitting in your house doing nothing.

Take this as an opportunity to use that gym membership you pay for every month (or that you pay for via tuition) but never use because why would you. I’m not saying you have to work out, but I am saying most gyms have hot tubs and those are fun. If nothing else, you can bask in the electricity you’re currently without.

I’m told hiking is a fun activity to do. Hike up to Monkey Face. That one was mentioned in our out back to school edition of The Orion, but we don’t talk about that anymore so moving on.

Now, completely disregarding my last ideas, why not take a nap? Complaining about not getting enough sleep is as American as pretending you don’t see the homeless. Use this time to get back on a proper sleep schedule. Worried about not waking up on time? Buy an analog alarm clock. Chances are this will wake you up faster and in more of a panic anyway.

Here is something to think about during a blackout: according to the National Center for Home Food Preservation, foods stay frozen longer if the freezer remains full, unopened, in a cool place and is well insulated. Usually food in a loaded freezer will stay frozen for two to four days, depending on its size. A half-filled freezer will keep food frozen only about 24 hours. With that valuable piece of information, I can’t think of a better excuse than to raid your fridge. If you don’t, all that food may go to waste and nobody wants that. It’s irresponsible. Eat that entire carton of ice cream you’ve been savoring and go to town. Worried about all those pesky calories? Refer to tip one.

In all seriousness, these power shut offs have been completely inconvenient to a lot of people; 940,000 PG&E customers to be exact.

“During Public Safety Power Shut Offs, you are reminded to approach intersections with caution, treat non-working traffic signals as stop sign signs and be aware of your surroundings,” PG&E stated on the company’s official Twitter account.

I guess some other less-interesting advice for the impending black outs would be: get a generator, charge your phone in your car and have a power outage safety plane in place. Boring, I know.

For more information on how to prepare for a blackout, visit‎ and remember, if these tips don’t work then hey, you get to join the lawsuit.

Alex Coba can be reached at [email protected] or @Thatoneguycoba on Twitter

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