Well, in addition to the interesting school year we're having, now we have a gas shortage caused by a cybercrime syndicate. If I wrote a movie about the last few years and shared it with a Hollywood Studio in the year 2010, it would have been laughed out as “unrealistic” and “impossible.” Well, impossible is here.
Just finished up my run. The gas station in Camilla has been busy since I got home. Rural Georgia struggles if the cities run out of gas. Hoping more utilities take IT Security seriously (and more schools.) patch windows, update servers, educate about phishing. pic.twitter.com/ehBgrWp0yX
— Vicki Davis (@coolcatteacher) May 10, 2021
The Call to Get Gas
My husband messaged me at work yesterday to get gas on the way home. The line in Newton wasn't bad at 4:10 but by the time I left, it was getting backed up. When I got to Camilla by around 4:30 pm the lines were going out of the gas station parking lot. When I went for my evening run by the gas station around 5:30, the lines were growing. So, as I jogged home after 6 pm, I grabbed a little over a minute of video of the gas station in Camilla.
Running on Empty
I went home and tweeted out the video with a comment (see above.) Then, I put up my phone. When I woke up this morning, I realized 30,000 people had viewed it and had a variety of news agencies reach out to me. Of course, the political conversations are there as with anything, however, the truth is, when we run out of gas, everyone runs out of gas. All of us.
No More Gas for Us: Empty Gas Stations
So, my husband ran by tonight and came home and said there would be no video today.
“Grocery bags are over all of the pumps now and no one is there.”
He told me gas is out in Thomasville, Albany as well as Camilla.
While I'm glad I topped off my tank, usually I get gas once a week because I do have quite a drive to work. Now, I'm wondering when this mess will get straightened out because I'd like to finish things out at school. I would hate to have to stay home because I'm out of gas! Could you imagine?
Panic or Not: We are Really Out of Gas
Now, lots of news outlets are dismissing the situation as “panic buying.”
But the reality is that we are out of gas. Whether people bought it in panic or not, we're out. I'm just glad my son made it home on Sunday from his college in Virginia.
We Need Real Leadership
As I focused on teaching today, this situation was in the back of my mind. I hope we continue to fuel up in many ways. May we focus on what is important. May we get rest when we need it and that includes from blaming everyone else for problems that impact us all.
And my hope is also that we will start seeing some leadership out of our government organizations who seem to spend more time arguing about whose fault things are than in sorting out the messes we continue to find ourselves in.
Leadership does matter. Cybersecurity and updating our computers matter too. But more than ever, leadership from governments matters and many issues that have been around before Presidents of both political parties took the helm — like that of cybercrime — are now impacting all of us. And our lack of addressing the cyber issues that surround us and we are all literally running out of gas.
It is time to address cyber crime. Today it is gas lines, tomorrow it could be hospitals. It is already impacting schools.
Note: If you look at the tweet and are curious, I had to focus on teaching today. I was contacted by a media organization TMX that manages the license for things like this. I was able to upload the long version of the video and generate a link that managed the licensing and tracking for where the video ended up. This was for my peace of mind more than anything so I could focus and teach. That was an interesting thing to learn about and it freed me up to focus on my students today, so that is a good thing. We will see if it gets picked up or not, but such are the crazy days when a video of a gas station in Camilla, Georgia is viewed 40K times.
Tips for minimizing teacher stress
- Discover 10 stress-busting secrets for healthy teachers. What simple routines will help you handle the stress?
- Simple advice for coping with stress at work.
- Learn tips to help you deal with difficult colleagues and students (even those who "hate" you -- yes it is possible!)