"We've warned the public," New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced on Saturday as Hurricane Irene shut down most of the East Coast, "and now we have to deal with Mother Nature." That's when the cast of the "Jersey Shore" took out their grenade whistle and declared: So long, ladies!

The storm whipped through the Tri-State area early Sunday morning (August 28), leaving thousands in New Jersey and Long Island without power, and causing dangerous floods in the Garden State. But housemates Snooki, Vinny, Deena and Sammi were safe and dry, having sauntered aboard a private jet and zipped away from the tri-state area and toward Los Angeles for the VMAs, pausing only for Vinny to tweet a picture of himself at the controls of the aircraft.

"I was flying the plane, but that was on the ground. I was just messing around in the cockpit," he told us alongside his castmates a few hours after touching down in La La Land. "Being on a private jet, it's not that bad — except it didn't have wi-fi. Could you believe it?"

Pauly couldn't, turning to his pal and declaring, "You've changed, bro! When your private jet doesn't have wi-fi and you gotta complain about it — Vinny problems!"

Then again, they haven't changed much at all. Their suggestions for hurricane preparedness included battery-powered hairdryers, a healthy dose of GTL, and the suggestion, "If you're by the water, just be more not by the water."

Luckily for them (and, perhaps, their old Jersey stomping grounds), the reality stars were far from the hurricane's path. Because if they were in the Heights, despite Irene's wrath, the "Shore" kids would be staging one heck of a bash.

"We'd have a lights-out party," Pauly said. "You party for the whole duration," Added Ronnie, "Hey, a bottle of Ron-ron juice, let's go!"

The 28th annual MTV Video Music Awards will air live Sunday from Los Angeles at 9 p.m. ET/PT, following the Selena Gomez-hosted pre-show at 8. See the list of nominees, revisit last year's highlights and vote for Best New Artist by visiting VMA.MTV.com.