Boulder or Vegas?

Despite it being late spring and the weather having finally (FINALLY) warmed up, somehow I managed to come down with someone’s nasty cold (no idea who, but tons more people at work are sick too) on Saturday and spent Sunday and Monday feeling like utter shite. This is not a good time for me to be sick, as I have a lot of actual work to do at work (!), a bunch of side stuff going on (like volunteer stuff, softball team, etc.) AND this weekend is Graduation weekend. In which my family is coming to town (my mom is the only one in my family, besides my cousin, who has visited since I moved here in January of 2003) to attend the multiple parties and the graduation, and we’ll have the largest gathering of people in our house ever (20+!) and I have a brazillian things to do before everyone gets here.

I highly doubt it’s H1N1, aka the swine flu, since it’s essentially a bad cold plus fever. (Although I just looked at the CDC website and I have at least half of the symptoms of H1N1. Yay?) I have only had the actual flu (influenza) 2 or 3 times in my life and it completely wipes me out beyond functioning. This is just a bad cold.

But it got me to thinking about, you know, Steven King’s The Stand and the possibility of a huge portion of the world’s population dying and if that happened what would I do? (Assuming I survived, of course). I’m not a huge fan of King’s work but I really like The Stand, especially the extended edition. I hated the made-for-TV movie version (don’t see it, it’s TERRIBLE) when we got it from Netflix several years ago, but I re-read the book every year or so. Since I live in Colorado, I’m pretty familiar with the terrain for a good chunk of the story, as (for those who haven’t read it) survivors of a manmade superflu end up congregating in either Boulder (the good guys/luddites) or Vegas (the bad guys/techies). I won’t get into how it happens or why, but there are some memorable scenes that take place in well-known Colorado locations (a scene at the Eisenhower tunnel always flashes through my head whenever we drive west on I70, for example).

Every time I re-read the book, I think about what I would do in a similar situation, dealing with the deaths of most of (if not all) my friends and loved ones, figuring out how to survive the urban jungle, and would I be a good guy or a bad guy? I know I wouldn’t want to go to Vegas in particular; it would be too hot and dry to try to get there via bike or on foot. Boulder’s only 35 miles to the Northwest. I’m far to lazy to bike or walk all the way to Nevada. Boulder it is. Guess I’m a good guy by default.

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3 responses to “Boulder or Vegas?

  1. I only discovered the Stand (extended version) a few months ago, but boy howdy did I love it. I think for much of the same reasons that you describe: the chance to ponder what would you do in that situation. As for Vegas vs. Boulder, I like your reasoning and as a Midwesterner, I figure Boulder would be about as far west as I could imagine going. Of course the real test would be getting out of Chicago, before Trashman burns the whole thing down around me.

  2. We’ve got the sick going around here too….my son came home with a fever and stuffy nose and was nice enough to share. 🙂 He was fine in less than a day and I spent the weekend dragging around fever and chills!

  3. So sorry to hear that you were sick – hope you’re better by now and that the whole graduation weekend came off well.I never realized the Stand was a post-apocalyptic-type book! I looooove those. That is now on my must-read list. There’s another one I love, Lucifer’s Hammer, that had a similar familiarity for me, as it takes place in Southern California. Just in case you get some free time in the near future.

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