In case you haven't seen the national news this weekend my hometown - Toledo, Ohio - has been in the middle of a toxic water crisis since about 2 a.m. on August 2.
The city awoke to "don't drink the water" warnings on Saturday morning. At first the warnings were don't drink the water, don't boil the water, don't even TOUCH the water. A couple hours later that was amended to "you CAN bathe in the water" (and that was later amended to only healthy adults can bathe in the water provided it's not hot water and they don't get it in the eyes, nose, or mouth).
Kids can't bathe in the water. We can't cook with the water. We can wash our hands in cold water (as if that's going to happen). We can do laundry with the knowledge that trace amounts of the toxin from the water will remain in the clothes.
This whole #watercrisis stems from an algal bloom in the western basin of Lake Erie - the water source for the city of Toledo and surrounding areas. Apparently - according to the news because the mayor is basically saying nothing at all - when the water treatment plant tested a sample late Friday night the readings were THREE TIMES higher than the recommended level for this particular toxin in drinking water.
So the alarms were sounded and we entered #EmptyGlassCity phase.
And since Saturday morning 400,000 residents of Toledo and Lucas County have stockpiled bottled water, sat in line to receive free water, and been glued to the nearly non-stop local news coverage of the #watercrisis just hoping that we will FINALLY HEAR SOME TEST RESULTS.
According to the news and city leaders many water samples have been sent to a lab in Cincinnati, another lab in northern Michigan, and a lab in Columbus so that they could get "independent" results.
First they said we'd hear something Saturday afternoon. Then it was Saturday evening. Then Saturday night. Then maybe Sunday morning. Then maybe Sunday afternoon. Then 10 p.m. Sunday night. And now, as of 11 p.m. Sunday night they MIGHT have test results by 1 a.m.
And as a resident of Lucas County who has spent (so far) more than $60 on bottled water, I say that is unacceptable. The local government is NOT giving us any answers. We know nothing more tonight than we did at 6 a.m. Saturday morning when the city woke to a total water ban.
And we deserve to know something - at this point I don't care if it's good news or bad news or a mix of both. But to be kept in the dark for the last two days and to continually be told that "results are coming" is completely unacceptable.
Don't feed us the political bullshit lines that we've been fed for two days about patience and this will take time. The governor showed up today for some reason. It looked a lot like a campaign stop to me. He didn't say anything worthwhile. A whole lot of useless crap poured out of his mouth and that was about it.
To the city leaders I say this: Do something. Say something. Stop feeding us bullshit and patting us on the head telling us how great it is that we're being patient. Because I'm pretty certain that patience is about to fly out the window in this city if we don't get answers soon.