Driving down to Madison yesterday we got caught in a freak hail-storm, complete with thunder, lightning, and me scanning the horizon for funnel clouds. Fortunately the new van seems not to have sustained any damage—the hail was marble-sized and appeared relatively soft. But people were seriously freaking out—pulling off the road and in a couple of instances getting into multi-car fender-benders. It was very odd. I was expecting a rain of frogs next, or maybe the rending of the earth—giant chasms opening in the road surface with flames shooting out of them. One really does get the sense that we're teetering on the edge of the apocalypse right now. Never in my life have I imagined that I'd find myself thinking about buying canned goods in bulk, just in case the shit hits the fan.