This morning I woke up to a really cold house. Okay, 15 isn’t that cold, but it is when the programable thermostat normally keeps the house at 18 and brings it to a cozy 21 by itself in the morning. It was only a worn-out valve that kept the furnace from kicking in, but that led me to reflect again how fragile our society really is. Our entire existence depends on the availability of electricity and natural gas. If either of those were unavailable for any length of time during the winter, our house would be completely useless, and the pipes would very quickly freeze up. I suppose the only thing to do is install a woodstove or a fireplace… although there is a rather short supply of space for either of those in our townhouse. Any other bright ideas, or should we trust that Union Gas and Hydro One will do their jobs?