Thursday, September 1, 2011

Sitting On My Porch Part Seventy Two

This post is dedicated to Geraldine 9/26/32 to 8/29/2005. I'll never be over it but I'll keep moving forward. Long live the Lower Ninth Ward.

I need to get this post done before college football gets in full gear this weekend and I fight flood waters to make it to my fantasy draft on Sunday. Plus, I have two epic Saints season preview posts to do this weekend if the power doesn't go off. It’s been a strange week around the city of New Orleans. That’s not the first time I have said those words. Monday was the anniversary of the weather event on August 29, 2005. I’m not in the mood to type the name this evening. It’s always a pretty somber and reflective day for most of us. It’s been six years so we talk about it less but inside it still stays with you. All week I've been thinking about my grandparents and that always puts me in a strange place where I want to make them proud and kick someone's ass on their behalf at the same time. My fifth act as a king of all humans is taking August off the calendar.

I guess Mother Nature decided to give us something to take our minds off all the water by covering the city in a big cloud of smoke for two days due to a marsh fire out in New Orleans East. I made a comment Monday morning that it smelled like burned collard greens outside. The smoke smelled really bad on Monday and then tried to choke the life out of everyone on Tuesday. In true New Orleans fashion there were some people who pretended like they didn’t smell anything and it was no big deal and another group of people who thought it was Armageddon. That made the whole situation a bit funny to me.

Once the smoke got everyone’s mind off of flooding we were presented with another tropical system that sitting outside of coast and waiting to mess up everyone’s Labor Day weekend. If it gets strong enough for a name it will be” Lee”. I’m hoping that it comes through before that and gives us whatever it’s going to as soon as possible. If no one home gets flooded and the Direct TV signal stays on long enough to watch the LSU vs. Oregon game on Saturday we should consider this event a win. I don’t want to downplay the seriousness of a tropical storm but we live in South Louisiana. We are going to get some kind of tropical weather. Give me a pain in the ass storm like this one with lots of rain over one that requires the activation of contra flow any time.

Michael Vick signed a contract worth 100 million dollars this week after being in federal prison two years ago. Most black men can barely get a job digging ditches when they get out of prison and Mike Vick got a huge contract with guaranteed money. If that doesn’t make him appreciate his gifts I don’t know what will. People’s reaction to his rise, fall and rising again shows the different philosophies on life in our community. So many people are inspired by the fact he went to prison and came back to have success. I think they see a lot of their own family and friends in him. I was raised by people who would say that if he never would have been fighting dogs in the first place he would have 200 million right now and could do even more things for himself and his family. At the end of the day the best way to beat the system is to stay out of it.

On the flip side of that issue Betty Jefferson stole over a million dollars from the most vulnerable and needy people in New Orleans and all she got were 15 months of house arrest. The second best way to beat the system is to be a really good thief and always steal from poor black people. You’ll get to spend 15 months watching Young and the Restless for your punishment.

New Orleans City Councilwoman Jackie Clarkson had a few issues at a meeting in District E when she said that having Mitch Landrieu as mayor took her back to the 50’s and 60’s which were the glory days of New Orleans in her book. I’m not the type of person that jumps all over someone for a quote unless it’s Glenn Beck or Rush Limbaugh. In this case however the councilwoman is not going to get a pass because there’s no way she or anyone else has lived in this area all their lives and doesn’t know that kind of comment was going to piss off black people. The political climate in this country is too tense right now and she should be more careful. I tried to come up with a way to let her off the hook but I couldn’t.

Maybe to her the 50’s and 60’s were the golden era for New Orleans but if me and my friends went back in time and went out to eat all of my white friends would have a nice seat overlooking the French Quarter and the rest of us would be eating in the kitchen if we got that far without getting our asses whipped and going to jail. I like the mayor but he hasn’t done anything that great to make me get on board with going back to any days like that. If he gets a hospital open in New Orleans East and a Wal Mart somewhere I might reminisce on when Schwegmann’s grocery store was open but that’s as far back as I am going. Besides, I thought we were focused on going forward.


Breny said...

Cliff, I really enjoy your Sitting On My Porch posts. They always make me think.

Leigh C. said...

I can't call the storm by its name, either, for two reasons: what's happened has resulted from way more than the storm itself, and my mother shares the same name. She doesn't deserve that.

Be well, Cliff. Tough time of year, indeed.

Kevin L said...

Well, at least the "50s and 60s" comment explains Jackie Clarkson's hairdo...

Susanna Powers said...

Hi Cliff, Beautiful post as always, I agree it has been a strange week with the intense heat and smoke, followed by threat of storm. That's a hoot, the comment from Kevin L about Jackie Clarkson's hairstyle. I spend time learning about the history of New Orleans and I think the glory days must still be ahead, I certainly can't identify anything more glorious than the present. take care & nice meeting you in person at Rising Tide, sp

Superdeformed said...

I dunno, every time a Walgreens opens I'm not taken back to the days of K&B (cheap pop).

I really wish more people would get pissed off at the New Orleans Aristocracy. We see condescending ruler caste in movies or tv shows and we hate them: but in real life people endear them.

People make no sense.