The Ian Gibson column: Give the dog a bone…

Comics legend Ian Gibson finds that power cuts have a habit of coming at the wrong time...

A genuine British comics legend: Ian Gibson

It’s an almost Pavlovian response, and I’m not talking ice cream here, that when a power cut happens one immediately needs a cup of tea or coffee. Something to soothe the aggravation of being plunged into darkness or at least powerlessness. And naturally, it is an impossibility because there is no power to heat the water for any such beverage. Thus the frustration is heightened immediately.

My neck of the woods seems to have been having quite a few power ‘outages’ of late. Maybe they have us in training for when the winter really sets in and the power-cuts wil be ‘real’ as opposed to the mere equipment failures that these seem to be.

It is a strange phenomena that only seems to happen when you’re in the middle of doing something. You wish it had waited till you’d finished cooking, writing your ‘blog’ or even drawing.

So you go in search of the candles you bought last time there was a power cut, and wonder if you still have that old wine bottle that you meant to take to recycling a month or so back. Then, once you have the faint illumination offered by the humble candle, you realise there’s nothing you can actually get done anyway. As everything you want to do requires the power that is the major missing ingredient. You can’t even have a refreshing shower (by candlelight – how romantic that sounds!!) as the central heating doesn’t function without the electricity to ignite the gas boiler. So you immediately feel cold and grubby, even if you’re not!

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And, personally, I find my eyesight is no longer up to drawing by candlelight. Or maybe I just don’t have enough old wine bottles to act as a makeshift candelabra..?

So you blow out the candles and go to bed, wondering why you bothered to hunt them out in the first place! Only to jolt awake when the fridge judders back into life as the power comes back on.

Now you can try to rescue the dinner that was half cooked, see if your inspiration is still adequate to the work on the drawing board. And best of all – get that cup of coffee you’ve needed for the last few hours!

Oh, and make a mental note to save your work on the putah more often!

Plus say a silent ‘thank you’ to the guys who came out in the middle of the night to fix the problem. Now maybe a biscuit to go with this coffee. But definitely not a dog biscuit, thank you.

Read Ian Gibson’s previous column for Den of Geek here.

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