Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Oil glut

My father and my brother the genius were so alike it scared me.  The first word ever applied to either one is "brilliant."  Both of them spent enormous amounts of effort on some cause.  My father spent four years trying to invent a sewing machine which would sew the toe of pantyhose invisibly.  He turned my brother's bedroom into a machine shop, surprising my brother when he came home from college  and had to sleep on a sofabed in the living room.  Dad had scores of patents on this machine, which proved difficult to design.  He became the world expert on pantyhose and was about to cash in worldwide when all the women of all  nations simultaneously decided they hated wearing pantyhose, discarded them, and started wearing trousers or going barelegged..  Even Anna Wintour.  And when you've lost Anna Wintour you've lost everyone who counts.

My brother the genius has a scheme for extracting energy from seawater.  Don't ask.  If he were rich he would devote all his time and resources to the project.  He also has lots of patents.  Needless to say, after the spectacular failure of wind and solar power nobody wants to listen.

When my mother was alive, he was convinced that all the natural gas in the world was going to be used up imminently, maybe within a year or two.  He actually ordered an oil burning furnace for her house.  When the installer came, the cleaning lady warned mother in time and was met with armed resistance and was forcefully ejected.  Thank heaven she caught him before the backhoe was applied to her rose garden.

It didn't take much acumen to consider him mistaken.  Just because someone is brilliant doesn't necessarily make him right.I felt in my gut that sooner or later,  there would be an oil glut and I was right.


Dick Stanley said...

I remember the demise of pantyhose. Never missed them. Not as bad as girdles to remove one-handed in the front seat of a car, but close.

Energy from seawater, I suppose, has something to do with hydrogen. Peak oil, however, will be a joke for another hundred years or so.

miriam sawyer said...

Energy from seawater has to do with the difference of temperature between the surface and...well, nobody else has ever understood it, so why should I?