It’s time for that talk on … what else?! Quality

It’s been over 10 years and it’s about time we had this talk.

Air quality, quality of life, quality assurance, quality control, quality this, quality that and quality the other.

Quality – more or less – connotes a condition or a state, as in the condition or state of some thing.

Take quality of life, for example. What we’re really talking about here is the state or condition of life. The same is true for air. Used in this way, what the word quality does not do is it does not infer whether that condition or state is good, mediocre or poor. It is only when we so specify that we are then able to discern what state, condition that “something” construct alluded to above is in.

Next. Quality is important. For example, as consumers we want assurances that when we purchase an item or when we call for a service to be provided, we, in essence, get our money’s worth. After all and as the expression goes, you get what you pay for.

Aha. The perfect lead-in for discussion on electrical-grid reliance.

As electricity users, we expect that electricity to be available, well, even at the risk of sounding so cliché, 24/7/365. When we pay we expect and hope for uninterrupted service. But when the unforeseen does happen, I think the best way to describe such a situation is that what I believe this causes in our lives is disruption, inconvenience, and, for some, frustration if not out-and-out fear, depending on the situation, of course, which is why quality has such deep meaning in our lives whether we’re cognizant of it or not. It’s amazing how one word can have so much meaning.


Keeping with the same train of thought and being we’re all familiar with the word “backup,” it is sometimes, maybe even often, impressed upon us that it is good to have a backup. In fact, just yesterday I was having a conversation with a friend about how personal computers, when they became a household item, would simplify our lives with the expectation that there would be no need for printing paper hardcopies. Uh, the need for printing on paper is still there. The way some folks see this is that it’s wise to print to paper important information just so we have at our disposals a hardcopy backup just in case, as in a situation where one’s computer has a hiccup, gets hacked, stolen or any number of possible so-called disruptions that could present themselves.

Air quality

So, time has come now to delve into that all-important topic that you no doubt suspected would be covered here and that is the quality of the air. Well, I’d be remiss if I didn’t talk about it.

People tend to be curious about the air that’s inhaled and with good reason – it has a direct impact on another kind of quality: life quality or, stated alternatively, quality of life. The two go hand in hand.

So, let’s look at just one subset if you will of a wider idea: air quality in the context of electrical transmission.

I earlier talked about disruption to the electrical grid supply. I also talked about the importance of backups.

Well, backups as applied here could mean only one thing: backup generators.

It is often the case when there are interruptions or disruptions to the electrical grid supply that the backup generator makes its presence felt and sometimes in a big way. The majority of these are portable generators that are gasoline- or diesel-driven implying that to power them, they must be fed a steady supply of fuel. That this is the case, such devices emit pollutants into the air which can not only negatively affect the quality of the air, but also the quality of life. The more these are used, the harsher the air- and life-quality impacts. Exactly the reason why electrical grid-supply reliability is imperative.

But, these backup generators at the same time don’t necessarily need to be gasoline- or diesel powered exclusively. There are some that rely on a steady stream of natural gas to operate. These devices are typically not portable but are more permanent in nature and in that sense around the home are more or less a permanent fixture. They may cost more than the portable appliance equivalents but, because they burn natural gas and not gasoline or diesel – fossil fuels – they’re so-called cleaner-burning devices. Their quality may be better also. It just depends on the product.

No room for quality compromise here, there or anywhere

This is the part of the talk where I tell you I’m a big fan of and advocate for uncompromised quality, no ifs, ands or buts, whether tied to an intangible such as air or a provided service like health care. Really, with regard to both those items, it should be nothing but the best and insisted upon always!

Quality: That’s what I’m talking about!

Standby generators

Last updated on Aug. 30, 2023 at 6:30 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time.

⁃ Alan Kandel

Copyrighted material.

Above and corresponding, connected home-page-featured images: Ashley Andujar