0611: "Disaster Voyeurism"

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby creaothceann » Fri Jul 17, 2009 7:06 am UTC

Ghavrel wrote:
BlastOButter42 wrote:I guess I can admit to liking disasters, but only for the chaos they cause, for the break in the monotony, or to exercise some primitive survival mechanism center in my brain or something, not because of people getting hurt. I really hope that that's not the reason most people "root" for hurricanes, something that I don't think I've ever done. I have thought that it might be kind of "fun" to live through a major disaster in my city, but I wouldn't want it to be one that killed or injured anyone...that just makes me feel bad.

Therein lies the cognitive dissonance. Hurricanes are damned impressive. So are most natural disasters. Their sheer force is just completely mindblowing; it goes against so many basic assumptions about nature. So people have this desire to see them, even though they know that it's very likely that people will get hurt (which they obviously don't want to happen, unless they're sociopaths).

Hence The Big Storm Picture.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby intertubes » Fri Jul 17, 2009 7:16 am UTC

First reaction: Wait, there are hurricane forums?
Take us to your food.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Yato » Fri Jul 17, 2009 7:18 am UTC

Westrim, actually nobody cares about graffiti around here. Also, we dont do it on the houses, just the sidewalks and streets. I myself use stencils of my drawings so the graffiti isnt crappy things, its actually the good kind.

And in a thread about rooting for a hurricane to kill people, graffiti on peoples hosues seems like a minor asshole-behavior. Well, I guess hoping and doing are different things >.>

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby iain_benson » Fri Jul 17, 2009 7:25 am UTC

The only way I ever found the Sim City games interesting was to load in the sample save games with busy, populated cities and then inflict natural disasters upon them - city management and development is boring compared to that. :)

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby colt45joe » Fri Jul 17, 2009 7:36 am UTC

yeh.. i remember thinking for a while i would like some disaster to occur that would ruin society for a while.. like a big earthquake or something..
not anymore though.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Fiska » Fri Jul 17, 2009 7:41 am UTC

DieJay wrote:Considering that there's literally a ton of people who insist on staying home while their neighborhood is being torn to shreds, while all the animals have had the decency to run away to safety when a natural disaster happens, would you really bet on the other team?! :roll: GO HURRICANE GO! *waves a little sports flag*

And boy would I hate to have to take a ride with mr. black hat... although it sure sounds better to be on his good side.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby thewaytodustydeath » Fri Jul 17, 2009 8:10 am UTC

I've known for a while now that I'm much closer to the BHM than I'm really comfortable with when it comes to stuff like this. Like when I was watching United 93, I got so disappointed when the passengers rushed the cabin and prevented the terrorists from flying the plane into the White House.

I still have the piece of lined paper that I wrote down "It is possible that New Orleans will suffer catastrophic damage." on when I read that sentence on the Katrina Wiki page a couple of hours before it hit. And I still remember wishing that the Dawson College shooting had happened just up the street at Marianopolis, my school, back in 2006. Strange times, man.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Jach » Fri Jul 17, 2009 8:29 am UTC

I admit that I've been somewhat disappointed lately with the amount of destruction I'm allowed in video games. (But if I need to turn to mindless destruction the game probably isn't very good anyway...)
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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby yeyui » Fri Jul 17, 2009 8:42 am UTC

Whenever I see pictures of houses perched at the edge of steep receding ocean shore or along an obvious fault line, especially if it is a big expensive looking house, I always root for the house to loose the battle. Why shouldn't your house fall into the ocean? Your the idiot that decided he just had to have beach front property.

Volcanoes, on the other hand, are just scary. I don't root for them. I'd rather not live on one either.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Plasma Man » Fri Jul 17, 2009 9:07 am UTC

I think cheering for natural disasters is almost a religious thing. It's something awe-inspiring that's much more powerful than us puny humans; it's almost as if we have to admire it. Also, they're mostly affecting people we don't know, so we don't feel for the victims, we just look at it and go "Woah! That's cool!"
On the other hand, I was cheering for the Endeavour launch to go OK this time, so I would just like to say that it's great that it did finally manage to lift off without any disasters. Hopefully they can get it back down as well.
By the way, I do work in a hospital and occasionally have to deal with bags of waste that have small amounts of human flesh in. It's a lot less exciting than you'd think. I haven't seen any organs being harvested yet, though.
Please note that despite the lovely avatar Sungura gave me, I am not a medical doctor.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Tenth Speed Writer » Fri Jul 17, 2009 11:45 am UTC

I had to stop myself one night after Sheltering Ops and Mass Care training at the Red Cross from saying, "I hope I get to apply all of this soon!"

I mean, our chapter spends weeks during the summer trying to get ready for the hurricane season. It almost feels a little... Disappointing not getting to put a little of it into action. Not that I want for a disaster to happen to anybody, but... good to know I'm not the only one who gets just a little geared up for it. : P
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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby littlelj » Fri Jul 17, 2009 12:58 pm UTC


Related, but not identical: Anyone else have a small secret hope that their twinge turns out to be something medically drastic?

e.g. "Mouth a bit dry - Google Google Google - might be cancer (great!)."

I did this. Until I had a cancer scare for real (tumour removed, pathology looked at it, not cancer) and now I think e.g. "Mouth a bit dry - oh FFS have a drink. It's not going to be serious."
Dudes, I'm a woman.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby chrth » Fri Jul 17, 2009 1:06 pm UTC

Hurricanes are different than say tornadoes or volcanoes. While I'm not going to go so far as to say they're predictable, they're trackable with a good measure of probability, so I don't feel as bad "rooting" for them. Tornadoes (especially) and volcanoes, however, are spontaneous and less predictable and therefore less fun to root for.

Re: "literally a ton of people"

A ton of people is on average only 10-15 people, so that's not very impressive. However, it is much more likely to be a correct use of the word literally, so Fiska's sarcasm was a major fail.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby nahkaimurrao » Fri Jul 17, 2009 1:18 pm UTC

SummerGlauFan wrote:Yeah, I get excited when disasters happen, too.


Reminds me of

Hope you don't get too excited. . .

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby MotorToad » Fri Jul 17, 2009 1:22 pm UTC

I'm just waiting for the next Memphis area quake. It's due! I get to see plenty of hurricanes.
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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Carteeg_Struve » Fri Jul 17, 2009 1:23 pm UTC

This is definitely... especially if a Hurricane has your name. I'm still depressed over one that had my name. It was spelled a little different, but pronounced the same... so close enough.

Here I thought it was going to nail the Texas coast and do some real damage... and it hit out in the middle of nowhere, knocking over a fence and killing two cows just about.

Effing figures.

(How many people think that the former members of 'Katrina and the Waves' have secret pride in themselves for their band's name and the fact their most famous song is ironically "Walking on Sunshine"?)

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby SirMustapha » Fri Jul 17, 2009 2:30 pm UTC

I wonder how many people keep on rooting for hurricanes after one hits them.

The Catarina was pretty traumatic, since our coast had never been stuck by a hurricane (though weaker cyclones have always ben usual). It was quite miraculous, since our beach house is extremely puny, frail and faulty, but the hurricane was already quite weak when it struck the region and it only ripped off some parts of the ceiling. The destruction in Torres was awful, and even though I didn't see it, I feel bad just thinking about it.

So yeah, I feel glad that I'm alone on this one so far.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby dmdavis » Fri Jul 17, 2009 2:43 pm UTC

I figure the whole rooting for high category hurricanes stems from our nerd tendency toward RPGs and leveling and such. If the hurricane doesn't make it to a decent category, it's like it didn't get to the high level, and missed out on the really cool class skills. "Ooo, at category (level) 3 it gets the "uproot trees" skill!" Go Hurricane Randall!

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby SunDawg » Fri Jul 17, 2009 2:46 pm UTC

I took an oceanography class a couple years ago and we talked about this kinda stuff for most of year
Also, one of my favorites

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Tamasan » Fri Jul 17, 2009 2:48 pm UTC

Is black hat guy taking credit for causing the shuttle to explode? :shock: He's definitely taking credit for sneaking into operating rooms and taking out commuters on horseback.

I usually don't feel guilty for hoping for disasters either natural or man-made. Maybe I'm a sociopath. I like chaos and destruction. A couple months ago a large part of me was hoping for global financial apocalypse - because maybe we'd do things better next time. And who didn't want to see bankers and politicians strung up on lamp-posts? :twisted:

Think about it. After big wildfires in the west US, there's new growth of grasses and bushes and life goes on. Tornadoes and hurricanes take out the weakest structures first - so we can build better and stronger. After the Revolutionary War, we have a new country founded on freedom and rationalism (although we've strayed far from that, but that's a discussion for elsewhere). Rebuilding after WW2 in western Europe has given us some countries there that are more advanced culturally and in other ways than the US. While it doesn't always work out for the better (pick a random South American country for example), there's the chance to completely remake things and start from a relatively clean slate and do things better.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Mactabilis » Fri Jul 17, 2009 3:20 pm UTC

this seems similar to people WANTING the end of the world to come.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Annath » Fri Jul 17, 2009 3:26 pm UTC

I live in Mobile, so we get it up the ass whenever hurricanes come through... and I do this.

Serisouly, me and my roommate were all excited that Gustav was supposed to hit as a category-5, and then the dumb thing died and only hit as a cat-2. :|

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby DeadCatX2 » Fri Jul 17, 2009 3:36 pm UTC

I totally dig Black Hat's fist in the last frame. The perfect accent to go with "like men once did"

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby DoomyDoom » Fri Jul 17, 2009 4:54 pm UTC

Before cheering for them to get bigger, I cheer for them to TURN. All the recent hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico have been bearing right down on me and then turned and fucked up some other state that isn't Texas.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Merbrat » Fri Jul 17, 2009 5:14 pm UTC

My friend's 80 yr old mother was a Red Cross Volunteer. She lived for Hurricanes!
It meant she would feel useful!

She avidly watched the Weather Channel and would interrupt our shows to give us excited updates to the weather several states away. Her bags were packed, in case it made landfall on our Texas coast. We were always teasing her that she wasn't supposed to hope it got worse.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Midna » Fri Jul 17, 2009 5:17 pm UTC

See, I too, live in Florida, and I always wanted a hurricane named after me. The one time it actually happened, though, the storm decided to turn around and dissolve somewhere in the ocean. I was kind of ticked off...it was like my CHANCE to be talked about on the news for weeks on end.

Also. Wouldn't it be a funny joke to tell a kid that if a storm is named after them, they and all the other people with that name have to pay for the damage?

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby kirkjerk » Fri Jul 17, 2009 5:23 pm UTC

I gotta admit I don't feel the whole "rooting for hurricanes" thing.
I'd feel guilty, as if somehow hoping for karmically helped it.
That "Chinese Curese" thing is right. I'd much rather live in boring times.
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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Insanity's Partner » Fri Jul 17, 2009 5:29 pm UTC

Lol. I feel it worth mentioning that I grew up in Florida for most of my life....including 2004.


See where they all seem to meet up?

Welcome to my home town!

Well, that's not entirely accurate. It's more in between the two spots where they seem to meet up. Long story short, I know what it's like to realize with horror that the food in the fridge is about to start rotting,and we have to find a way to cook it, without charcoal, because the neighbors are too stingy to loan us any. In the end we had to peel the plywood off the windows and try to light it on fire....do you know how long it takes flame retardant wood to light on fire? I do.
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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Pie_Sniper » Fri Jul 17, 2009 5:50 pm UTC

Now I feel like there is something wrong with me because I don't root for hurricanes. I am one of those that wishes to be in a sort of "survival situation", though. Or a zombie apocalypse.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Simon17 » Fri Jul 17, 2009 6:00 pm UTC

kirkjerk wrote:I gotta admit I don't feel the whole "rooting for hurricanes" thing.
I'd feel guilty, as if somehow hoping for karmically helped it.
That "Chinese Curese" thing is right. I'd much rather live in boring times.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Ampyxx » Fri Jul 17, 2009 6:04 pm UTC

OH MY GOD RANDALL GET OUT OF MY HEAD! I was just thinking about hunting people right before I read this comic!

Also, I too feel the same way about hurricanes.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby ukaberry » Fri Jul 17, 2009 6:10 pm UTC

I root for hurricanes, and I do live in Florida--been living here for about 11 years, so yeah, even in 2004. One reason I do this is simple: hurricane days. Hurricane days are the Floridian equivilant of snow days, because we obviously don't get snow. The bigger the hurricane, the more days off of school we get, as long as we don't evacuate (which we've only done once, for Frances.)

Another reason is, it's actually sort of fun to sit through a hurricane. There's just this primal sense of danger and excitement, the wind howling, rain swirling all around. You're pretty much trapped inside your house, but it's fun.

Despite the fact that we live right next to a small forest (techinally a wetland), we've never had a single tree fall on our property, and our power has never been out for more than an hour. Guess we're just lucky like that.

Another thing: besides hurricanes, something I find myself doing frequently is watching raindrops roll down the windshield of the car, and I always root for them to get to the bottom, despite the fact that I know the wipers are going to push them away. The raindrops never get to the bottom, but I still secretly hope they will.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Ammonsa » Fri Jul 17, 2009 6:13 pm UTC

My condition is slightly more serious than just wanting destruction.

Black saturday was the most destructive bushfire in Australia, 173 confirmed dead. And yet I was disappointed to find that it didn't even get to the 200 mark, let alone the 300 mark.

I am a sadist, just slightly.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby ESoergel » Fri Jul 17, 2009 7:20 pm UTC

I'm from the East coast of Florida, and we always root for hurricanes. Many family friends and I are surfers (a difficult pastime in Florida thanks to the continental shelf), and we get so excited come hurricane season. My dad called while I was reading this comic to tell me that "there's a little action in the tropics, maybe we'll get something soon." And it actually is a lot of fun (until someone loses an eye, of course), I remember driving around in my friend's e-cart during one of the big hurricanes in 2004 (incidentally, my 18th birthday was in the middle of a week-long power outage) in howling wind and rain with palm fronds falling around us. Every time a hurricane looks like it's coming straight for us and then veers off, we're like, "aww, the gulf[/North Carolina] again!"

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Otto » Fri Jul 17, 2009 8:08 pm UTC

MotorToad wrote:I'm just waiting for the next Memphis area quake. It's due! I get to see plenty of hurricanes.

Yep. I live here, and am prepared for it. I got condo with an external door looking down 6 stories, so that when the quake hits, I'll be able to surf down the 80 foot high waves of the Mississippi River, as it tears a 80 mile wide swath of land down towards the gulf. It'll end up leaving me somewhere around New Orleans, where I'll have a room reserved at Harrah's, to gamble the night away and have crazy sex with strangers, like men once did.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby booyabazooka » Fri Jul 17, 2009 8:55 pm UTC

yeyui wrote:Whenever I see pictures of houses perched at the edge of steep receding ocean shore or along an obvious fault line, especially if it is a big expensive looking house, I always root for the house to loose the battle. Why shouldn't your house fall into the ocean? Your the idiot that decided he just had to have beach front property.

Volcanoes, on the other hand, are just scary. I don't root for them. I'd rather not live on one either.

I'm confused.

Do you assume that the house's owner is too stupid to have understood and weighed the risk (or to have paid for insurance), or are you resentful that people can afford that risk as part of the price for their luxury?

And why are volcanoes different? I don't have much fact on the subject (I'd be interested to see some), but it seems to me that volcano activity is in many cases more predictable than that of hurricanes, and people tend to live near them (such as on Hawaii) for the same reasons.

My disaster story: Last year a tornado hit downtown Atlanta. That was interesting. Can't say I was rooting for it at the time, but looking at the aftermath I was hoping to see a lot of damage...

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby JamesGecko » Fri Jul 17, 2009 9:45 pm UTC

booyabazooka wrote:My disaster story: Last year a tornado hit downtown Atlanta. That was interesting. Can't say I was rooting for it at the time, but looking at the aftermath I was hoping to see a lot of damage...

I was hanging out with a friend at Georgia Tech, and it passed within blocks of us. Not that we knew it at the time, of course. Super Smash Brothers Brawl had just recently come out, you see, and we were hanging out with a projection screen over the window and the sound cranked up. In retrospect, if the tornado had passed over us, we probably wouldn't have been in bad shape. The building was pretty solid, and the projection screen setup was large, thick, and sturdy enough that it would have caught most of the glass from the window while we dived behind furniture.

It's definitely surreal when there's natural disaster outside and you don't notice at all.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby gereffi » Fri Jul 17, 2009 10:09 pm UTC

First comic to actually make me laugh out loud in a few weeks. Great job.

I used to love to watch disasters, too. Then a couple of floods ruined a few of my friends' houses. It's not so funny anymore.

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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Kain » Fri Jul 17, 2009 11:10 pm UTC

I wonder if living in a disaster zone makes it more acceptable for someone to root for that type of disaster...
Living in Miami, I know a lot of people, myself included, that constantly wish for a large hurricane, or an active season, or what have you, so that we can say we lived through it. By the way, I lived through Andrew and Katrina, and Wilma (full disclosure: Katrina and Wilma hit S. Florida as cat 1s or cat 2s)
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Re: "Disaster Voyeurism" Discussion

Postby Tillian » Sat Jul 18, 2009 2:05 am UTC

Last edited by Tillian on Sun Apr 17, 2016 3:52 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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