Nuclear Gaffes and Those Involving Slightly Less Destructive Power

And from the yesterday’s top news stories:

The government accidentally posted on the Internet a list of government and civilian nuclear facilities and their activities in the United States, but a U.S. official said Wednesday the posting included no information that compromised national security…

Included in the report, however, are details on a storage facility for highly enriched uranium at the Y-12 complex at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee and some sites at the Energy Department's Hanford nuclear site in Washington state, this official acknowledged…
Understandably, the administration is in full damage control mode trying to convince everyone that the information released was unrelated to national security. The Feds make an appealing argument; that is until you try to find the report online and discover that it has mysteriously been removed from all public sites.

Now, I have never inadvertently released classified information on nuclear reactors to the public, but have to confess to an occasional act of buffoonery.

Reading this story inspired me to create my own participated and/or witnessed list of less serious but still annoying gaffes:

 A couple is waiting outside an unnamed clothes collection site (at the posted opening time) for those less fortunate with a load of goods waiting to be donated.* Their stuff is in an uncovered pickup bed, and the employee charged with collecting the items is running 10 minutes late. Five minutes prior to the doors opening (the worker is already five minutes late), it starts to rain.

The attendant finally opens the door, sees the load of donations, and over the noise of the downpour tells the pickup-driving couple, “Sorry but, I can’t accept wet donations.”

*Note this happened to the folks in front of us this week.

 Before leaving to drive to a hiking trail about 45 minutes away, the Mrs. verifies with me that I have all the kids shoes packed in our vehicle. “Check,” I curtly reply. We later arrive at the park and I discover that I brought two left shoes for one of the little ones. Wonderful…

 In a hurry before leaving on a family weekend trip, I did not have time to get directions to our hotel directly from them. Instead, I printed off an unnamed travel site’s turn by turn directions. We arrive in our big city destination late at night only to find that those “specific” directions end with us staring at a busy divided highway—a road with no promised hotel or any other buildings in sight for that matter.

 When my brother and I were less than 10 years old, mom and dad had the fantastic idea of wading into the Pacific Ocean on a glorious sunny day in Southern California. We all held hands and jumped a few waves that were like waist deep on me.

All of the sudden, a thunderous wave appears out of nowhere. It crashes into us and knocks everyone down like bowling pins. It must have been a hilarious scene—feet, arms, legs and body parts flying everywhere. Fortunately, the ‘rents had strong grips and the kids spent the next hour coughing-up salt and sand to rid our bodies of an extra souvenirs from our day at the beach.

 During the middle of our honeymoon in the great state of Vermont, I made the mistake of mentioning that the trunk-strap bike rack did not fit as well as I thought it should on the Mrs. really cool Camaro. The rest of the driving was spent with conversations similar to this one:

Mrs: {Staring intently at the back window} The bikes are wobbling too much. You got those straps tight right?

Slamdunk: Yes, they are ok.

Mrs.: {After a short pause} Did you see that? Look, the left strap is loose!

Slamdunk: Where? It looks fine to me.

Mrs: It should not be moving like that. You need to stop the car, get out, and tighten that strap now.

Slamdunk: {loud exhale}.

Mrs: Don’t give me attitude.

In sum, the bikes and I survived the rest of the 10 day trip—well, some of it just barely. Perhaps a slip-up involving nuclear energy is not so bad in comparison.


Erin said...

As a teenager, I once (with my mom, friend, and her mom) got more than halfway to St. Louis from Chicago for a dance competition when I realized that I had dance shoes.