Category Archives: hurricane

Goodnight, Irene…

Here’s hoping minimal damage and decent night’s sleep to my Northern friends….


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Posted by on August 27, 2011 in hurricane


Media Hysteria

While it was nice having electricity and air conditioning, I couldn’t help but thinking on Monday that we might have been better off without all of the crazy media hysteria concerning Hurricane Gustav and the dastardly cesspool media of the internet throwing a 17 year old girl under the bus.

I was so incensed with Shepard Smith’s scandalous behavior in the French Quarter that I actually emailed him at Fox.  I have yet to hear about my email of protest:

Mr. Smith,

I find it appalling and a slap in the face to all Louisianaians to appear on national TV from the French Quarter broadcasting about the danger to residents, etc., adorned in an OLE MISS HAT.  Sir, you should be ashamed.

As if this wasn’t enough, Geraldo Riveria was desparately seeking drama, going batshit crazy about a man “stranded in the water”.  After a few anxious seconds, he realizes that the dude was actually on a life line, in a life jacket and trying to secure a propane tank that had come loose from high water.

See both atrocities here, for yourself:

Throughout the day, family in Louisiana and family staying here with us, all laughed about the “drama” unfolding and how the media was trying so hard to “make” a story.  Billboards were obliterated (paper flying in the wind), mass flooding had begun (a storm drain was clogged), dangerous debris was littering the roadways (two leaves in the middle of the street were shown — I am not kidding), and Jim Cantore from the Weather Channel basically cried on TV because some fishermen were electing to ride out the storm on their boat — a 42′ foot boat build for survival in high seas and tethered in port.

EVERYTHING in the media is so overblown, so taken out of context and so exploitive.  While these storms ARE killers and ARE bad and ARE destructive, the media tries to sensationalize and dramatize every single drop they can, to garner your undivided attention for as long as they possibly can.

Just remember, people, when you are watching this….temper it down about 70%.  I think the media, as a whole, is totally irresponsible.  It reminds me of Pravda in the now-defunct Soviet Union, except that the messages are controlled by capitalists who are bent on trying to sensationalize the news to scare and intimidate you.  The news media has created a generation of cynical and jaded adults who basically have no hope.  Everything is dire and drastic.  And they wonder why their ratings have plummeted and people run for the stupidity of reality shows.

I always loved the line in John Mayer’s song Waiting on the World to Change:

When you trust your television, what you get is what you got….when they own the information, well, they can bend it all they want. 

And, bend they do.  When blogging first came into being, it was a refreshing honest assessment of issues and feelings by responsible people.  Now, as I’ve seen over the last two years, people and organizations use blogs to manipulate messages, smear people from all walks of life and generally try to make untruths reality.  What happened to obeying the commandment against “bearing false witness”.  Oh, I forgot, religon has no place in the public discourse.

Well, I may be on a soapbox today, but belief is a beautiful armor…as the song goes.  It’s time for people everywhere to realize that there are radical beliefs on all sides of every issue, but most reasonable people (I like to think that’s 80% of the population) are somewhere in the middle.  I urge people to consider that there is no equivocally “right” answer.  The best progress to solving problems comes when good people compromise for the good of the whole.  It’s time for this country to hold the irresponsible main media and “blogging media” accountable for inappropriately using their “voice” to create fury and maelstorm to get your eyes on their channel to sell advertising.  That’s right folks, it all comes down to money.

  Belief, John Mayer

Is there anyone who ever remembers
changing their mind from the paint on a sign?,
is there anyone who really recalls
ever breaking rank at all
for something someone yelled real loud one time?
oh, everyone believes
in how they think it oughta be
oh, everyone believes
and they’re not going easily

belief is a beautiful armor
but makes for the heaviest sword
like punching underwater
you never can hit who you’re trying for
some lead the exhibition
and some have to know they tried
it’s the chemical weapon
for the war that’s raging on inside
oh, everyone believes
from emptiness to everything
oh, everyone believes
and no one’s going quietly

we’re never gonna win the world
we’re never gonna stop the war
we’re never gonna beat this
if belief is what we’re fighting for

we’re never gonna win the world
we’re never gonna stop the war
we’re never gonna beat this
if belief is what we’re fighting for

is there anyone you can remember
ever surrender with their life on the line?

we’re never gonna win the world
we’re never gonna stop the war
we’re never gonna beat this
if belief is what we’re fighting for

we’re never gonna win the world
we’re never gonna stop the war
we’re never gonna beat this
if belief is what we’re fighting for

what puts a hundred thousand children in the sand?
belief can, belief can
what puts a folded flag inside his mother’s hand?
belief can, belief can


Posted by on September 3, 2008 in hurricane, John Mayer, Louisiana


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So close…

…in many ways.  At one point during the day, this was the picture.

We woke up at 6:00am to the blaring of tornado sirens.  Throughout the day, we experienced bands from Hurricane Gustav and then hours of lull.  In all, we received about 4.5 inches of rain and gusty winds of about 35 mph in Mobile.  However, we only lost electricity for about 30 seconds around noon.

Our family in Lafayette looked to be in the path of a killer, but by the time the storm reached there it had lost much of it’s punch.  They did lose electricity earlier in the day, but I expect that to be reconciled sometime tomorrow.  It appeared that across Southern Lousiana, our family fared extremely well and didn’t suffer much damage.  And, to top it off, the levees held and New Orleans fared extremely well considering what could have been.  Feeling extremely fortunate, I left to get celebratory ice cream for everyone at Sonic.

When I returned, #1 son (who’s staying with us) told me that his grandmother had called and that Mr. D’s sister’s brother-in-law and wife had been killed when a tree fell on the house they had evacuated to in Baton Rouge.  Sadly, they had evacuated to avoid this sort of danger.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to them and all of those who lost their lives and property in this storm. 

As they say, “But for the grace of God…”

  Waiting on an Angel, Ben Harper


Posted by on September 1, 2008 in hurricane, Louisiana


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Laboring through Gustav


 Well, this is not exactly what I had planned for the Labor Day weekend, but here we are….again.

As I explained in my Tropical Storm Fay post last week, we are “stayers” so we’ve made our preparations, stocked up on supplies, lanterns, gas, ice, beer, and wine.  (Believe me, as the storm draws near, the latter is a necessity.)  While Mobile will not get a “direct hit”, we are on the right or the “wrong” side of the storm where the storm surge and rain bands are the worse.  We’ll likely lose electricity so I may not be available for a while.

However, the real issue with this storm is New Orleans.  Gustav is predicted to make landfall just west of New Orleans, putting the city and Lake Ponchartrain in the path of the Eastern eye wall, which is the absolute worse place to be.  In my opinion, this storm will be worse on New Orleans than Katrina.  This storm could very well break the back of a city that has experienced such wide-spread suffering.  Even though residents know that New Orleans is basically a “bowl” and the levees will fail if strained at all, the shock of seeing damage from 20 ft. of water is just not something you get used to.  If this storm plays out like it looks to, New Orleans may very well never recover.

Most of our family is in Lafayette and New Iberia (which is west of New Orleans and Baton Rouge) and most are staying put.  Those that live in low lying areas are bunking in with others and are basically safe.

It appears that they will experience the immediate Western side of the storm, which will likely not be too severe.  One son stayed in Lafayette and the other evacuated here and is staying with us.  We’ll stay in phone contact with everyone as long as land lines and cell towers hold out.

Thanks for all of the thoughts and prayers.  They are needed and appreciated.  We will be fine.  We always are. 

  Shelter, Ray LaMontagne


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