Geoff passed on to me an Oxford status update from his brother, dated Wednesday morning:
I have just heard that Botley Rd is passable at the moment but won’t be for long. A big surge is predicted for today as the the river drains the floodplains and water-meadows further up the Thames Valley. Kidlington, despite being between the Oxford Canal and the Cherwell River, is OK at the moment, at least in our area. There’s a possibility that the Osney substation could go off, though, in which case most of central Oxford will be without electricity. The Bishop of Carlisle has helpfully suggested that it is all a punishment from God for our wicked ways.
There are some impressive videos on the BBC website.
Leaving aside the notion of a vengeful God who tortures sanitary engineers above all other men the videos which Geoff cites really are rather good – including the one of Port Meadow doing the job for which it was designed.
Then I think of all the recent discussion in the press about building-up the East End of London, on marshland alongside the Thames, and I think of:
- The houses there which will likely repeatedly be flooded out.
- The houses elsewhere which will flood due to the lack of drainage from the stuff that has been built-over.
- The costs of repairing an area the size of East London for the sort of damage that happens every few years in Upton.
…and I conclude it’d be a really bad idea to invest in the reinsurance business any time now.
 If I were God, omnipotent, and and wanted to punish mankind for wickedness, I would be a lot more creative than flooding, which has a been-there-done-that quality. How about making the entire population of the planet impotent for a year and a day – a nicely biblical timespan? Make it complete erectile dysfunction. The frustration would start wars, death, the suffering would be a thing of delight – oh, wait, God doesn’t delight in suffering, oh, wait, yes he does the Bishop says so…
 Come to think of it, some of my lesbian friends would probably think it a great idea.
 The self-proclaimed “Army of Dykeness”, I kid you not.