Category Archives: New Jersey

Hurricane Sandy

We lost power 8:30 PM on Monday night as a result of Hurricane Sandy and just got it back after 39.5 hours.

We ended up being extremely fortunate when you consider the destruction around us. Two trees fell in our backyard but the only damage was to a shed. One of the trees just narrowly missed the house, had it fell in another direction by a foot it would have ended up in the master bedroom upstairs or the living room downstairs. There are houses in our neighborhood with trees on top of them. There are trees and power lines down all over the place. Even though we were without power all this time we have to be thankful that there wasn’t as much rain as last Irene. That storm had caused flooding despite us not losing power. If the same had happened again mixing with power outages that would have made sump pumps useless the damage from flooding would have been far worse.

All this led me to think how people who live in areas that are regularly struck by hurricanes manage to cope with the the destruction? Sandy was barely a Category One storm by the time it hit us yet the damage is almost unthinkable.

I have to applaud Governor Chris Christie. I was one of many who spoke out when both he and the Lt. Governor went on vacation at the same time during a major snow storm but his handling if Sandy has been fantastic.

I was thinking late Monday night about the deaths Sandy has caused long before it even reached the US. I believe I ready that it had killed 60 people before it reached the US yet in typical American fashion those numbers were largely ignored in our news broadcasts. As I sat in this crazy storm last night with the loud noises coming from outside that kept us awake most of the night I also had to pause and think about the people of Afghanistan, Iraq and Palestine who have seen their neighborhoods bombarded for years and have endured so many more sleepless nights.

Take a moment to be grateful for what you have because they are so man people out there who are in situation far worse both in and out of this current storm.

In closing, major kudos to PSE&G. Having power restored to us in under 40 hours after this destruction is very impressive.

This tree barely missed our house.
Neighbor’s tree fell into our yard
That same tree completely crushed the shed in our backyard
Kudos to PSE&G for having our power back in under 40 hours.

See the yellow caution tape? That is how power cables our.

Down tree on Easton Avenue in Somerset completely blocking one side.  
Downed cable a block away from me. 

This is the bottom of a downed tree in my neighborhood. 

Downed tree by New Brunswick Senior Center

Downed tree on a house in Somerset, NJ

Flood images from my area

I’ve been looking since yesterday for images from around my area. I wanted to go out yesterday but our township is still under a State of Emergency until at least today.

Check out this video from on flooding in my area.

Here are some photos from around the area. Click on the links in the caption to see more from each of those sources.

This is a median on Route 18 in New Brunswick. (THNT)
Route 18 in New Brunswick (THNT)
Route 18 once again (THNT)
Canoe on Route 18 in New Brunswick (Credit Adam Helfgott)
Donaldson Park in Highland Park (THNT)
Route 27 (

Flooded Minor League Baseball Stadium (Jim Holovacko)
Easton Avenue by JFK Blvd. (Christopher Chipps)

As always you can leave a comment here, reach me by e-mail or Follow sahyder1 on Twitter.

Hurricane Irene

Looks like the hurricane downgraded to Category 1 ahead of hitting North Carolina which is good news but the danger is far from over.

Already seeing so many idiots talking about “typical weathermen” and them being wrong. These are likely the very same people who will be complaining if we have extended power outages. The roads get bad here during an average storm so I don’t even want to get into how bad they would with up to a foot of rain falling in a three hour period as was being mentioned last night. I’d rather the Hurricane Center be wrong while being extra cautious instead of being wrong by taking things lightly. If you live in a high rise building and are safe from the flooding don’t take things lightly as the higher you are the more wind damage your apartment can receive. They’ve been talking about being worried about falling debris from skyscrapers in Manhattan injuring people on the ground.

 I don’t know why it is so hard for people to grasp that certain areas are asked to evacuate early so there is less traffic on the roads at the end. NJ has had only a few counties be evacuated so far and there was already a 20 mile backup on the Garden State Parkway (which is like one of the few real highways in the area instead of the typical 2-3 lane ones we get around here). I heard people on the radio complain about the sports station here spreading paranoia in calling for the Giants/Jets pre-season game today to be postponed. Let me bold that part for you…..pre-season game.

NYC folks can find what kind of evacuation zone they are in by going here. You can also find shelter locations there.

If you are on twitter follow @breakingirene

If you want text alerts from your local police department you can do so by registering here. I signed yesterday and already got notified of road closures.

Be safe….get the hell out if their is an evacuation called for where you live. Better to be safe then to put your life in danger or that of any first responders that might have to respond to an emergency.

As always you can leave a comment here, reach me by e-mail or Follow sahyder1 on Twitter.


This might be the first time I’ve felt an earthquake.

I was sitting on my bed when it started shaking. I felt it for a good 5-10 seconds. I went on twitter and saw a  tweet from Brendan Prunty of the Star-Ledger which confirmed by suspicions. If you felt the earthquake and would like to help the (USGS) fill out this little form. You can find out how strong the earthquake was where you were by entering your zip code here. It was a 4.1 where I live.

From the Washington Post.

The earthquake’s epicenter was nine miles south of Mineral, Va., and 87 miles southwest of Washington, D.C., according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The USGS initially recorded the quake at 5.8 magnitude but later upgraded it to a 5.9. It struck at 1:51 p.m. Eastern time, the USGS said. At 2.8 magnitude aftershock was reported at 2:46 p.m.

Predictably Verizon, AT&T and Sprint customers all had trouble making phone calls in the aftermath but I was able to text on my AT&T phone.

Manhattan District Attorney’s press conference regarding Dominique Strauss-Kahn was interrupted by the earthquake and it was caught on video.

XKCD delivered with a great comic.

I’ve seen a lot of tweets and blog posts from the west coast mocking the east for the panic caused by this earthquake. I posted a response to that on Tumblr.

West coasters laughing at the east coast over the earthquake panic….just remember we’ve seen how you react to half an inch of snow.

As always you can leave a comment here, reach me by e-mail or Follow sahyder1 on Twitter.

Interfaith Iftar at Central NJ Mosque

If you’re in the vicinity of Piscataway, New Jersey and want to know more about why your Muslim friend/neighbor/classmate/co-worker has been fasting during Ramadan (and for that matter what is the significance of Ramadan) come visit the Muslim Center of Middlesex County on Thursday August 18th. The event starts at 6:30 PM. There will be a presentation from the Imam after which there will be a Q&A session where everyone is welcome to ask a question. In the past local elected officials as well as members of neighboring Churches have attended the event.

Welcome Presentation………………….. 6:30 PM
Iftar & Prayer Observation……….7:50 PM
Interactive Dinner…………………………..8:15 PM

As we approach the 10th anniversary of 9/11 there will be a lot of negative portrayal of Muslims and Islam in the media. Come see what Islam and Muslims are really about for yourself.  For more information contact You can RSVP by sending an e-mail to or by calling 732-463-2004 X111

Muslim Center of Middlesex County
1000 Hoes Lane
Piscataway, NJ 08854

View Larger Map

As always you can leave a comment here, reach me by e-mail or Follow sahyder1 on Twitter.

“Miracle on the Hudson” plane is at Rutgers Stadium

The “Miracle on the Hudson” plane is bound for a museum in Charlotte, North Carolina by road. Along the way it obviously will take many stops as the truck crews that helping move it obviously need their rest. Just so happens that the very first stop on its journey is 5 minutes from where I live.

The plane is literally parked on the side of River Road right across from the new entrance into Rutgers Stadium. You can walk right up to it and take a picture if you’d like. The street I live on has a “block party” every year and earlier in the day someone mentioned that a plane was at Rutgers. I had heard earlier in the day about the plane moving but I didn’t know Piscataway was one of the scheduled stops. So at 1 AM I strolled over there to snap a few pictures. If you want to see if the plane will be coming to a stop near you follow them on twitter.

As always you can leave a comment here, reach me by e-mail or Follow sahyder1 on Twitter.

Highest Duty: My Search for What Really MattersGemini Jets US Airways Express (New C/S) CRJ-700 1:400 Scale

Cory Booker – America’s Mayor

If you read the blog or my twitter feed you know by now that I am a big Cory Booker guy. He has done a great job as Mayor of Newark, NJ by actually stepping out in the community and making a difference.

In an era where politicians like Sarah Palin will do anything to get the camera on themselves, Cory Booker provides a refreshing change of pace. In an era when candidates for the US Senate don’t know important things like the minimum wage, Cory Booker provides something different. In an era when phonies like Sarah Palin visit areas struck by disaster to pad their resumes, Cory Booker actually goes into and makes a difference in his community. While our Governor was at Disney World as the blizzard struck (the Lieutenant Governor is also out of town), Cory Booker was out shoveling peoples driveways.

A blizzard isn’t the only time you’ll see Cory Booker keeping the public informed via twitter. He routinely makes patrol trips at night with the Newark Police Department. Some may call this a publicity stunt ahead of possible runs for Governor or Senator but there is no camera following him around. I’ve been watching blizzard coverage on the news the last two days and have not heard one mention of Cory Booker.

Don’t get me wrong, I have no problems with Chris Christie going on vacation, I do have a problem with Lieutenant Governor being out of the state at the same time. This is the time first New Jersey has had a Lieutenant Governor but something like this makes me wonder why we created the new office if situations like this are still coming up?

There are some who are comparing Christie’s handling of this storm to that of New York City Mayor John V. Lindsay during the storm of February 1969.

Cory Booker’s twitter feed is a must read on an average day but when something like a blizzard strikes his community it becomes even more impressive. Mayor Booker has a great personality that he displayed on the national stage during his “feud” with Conan O’Brien.

New Jersey (and America) needs Cory Booker for Governor in 2013 or Senate in 2014.

Edit: NBC Nightly News reported on Cory Booker’s work tonight.

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Brick City

snOMG December 2010

I don’t know who coined these words on twitter during the the storms last winter but they work for me. Twitterverse is referring to the storm as snOMGsnowpocalysesnowmageddon. Whatever you want to refer to the Blizzard of December 2010 as, there is a lot of snow in the forecast.

Here are some periodic updates from Central New Jersey.


Around 1:30 PM

 Around 6 PM 

  9:10 PM 

Yes, that does say 14 inches. This storm is only 5 hours in.

11:30 PM 
17 inches and counting
Around 9:00 AM

This is how the same spot looked before all the snow. 


Trying to clean up again around noon. 

 Something resembling a sidewalk thanks to Angry Brown Guy.




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