Ten years ago, I was standing in the livingroom of a strange man's house, not entirely sure why I was there. Or, rather, I knew why I was there, which was to do illicit substances and engage in various acts. I just didn't know why I'd bother to be there.
Fitzgerald famously said that there are no second acts in American lives. Ten years ago, I was attempting to prove that not only were there second acts--there were as many as fifteen to twenty.
The livingroom was a nice room. Very austere, but in a tasteful rather than severe way: a grey cloth chair shaped like a proud, jutting jaw; a black leather sofa slouching before an expansive set of naked windows; a rug more complicated than my brain's neural network; tables and framed art and a random monolith of bookshelves.
A floor lamp.
And me, standing in the center, wearing a pair of camouflage shorts and nothing else. The strange man stood near me and asked, "You're from the South, right?"
"The shorts reminded me." This was a sarcastic remark I was unable to recognize as sarcasm at the time. "So your family okay? They aren't in danger."
"Far as I know," I replied, swaying to music that may or may not have been playing.
The strange man, who claimed to be an aide for Olympia Snowe (or perhaps I misheard him), inhaled smoke, passed the smoke to me. "I only ask because of the hurricane." Pause. "You do know about that, right?"
No. I did not know about Katrina, hitting as I was taking a hit.
The most important thing Greg ever did was toss a coffee cup into the floor. The cup splattered like a bug. Parts of the cup flew around the kitchen, bounced on the tile. "You." Greg said the word, but didn't connect the word to anything. It was just "You," and he was correct. "You" was enough.
I'd told him about the dalliances. I'd told him about the drugs. The only casualty was a coffee cup.
Louisiana. Louisiana. They're trying to wash us away.
And they were trying to wash Louisiana away. It was awful to realize what the Strange Man meant when he asked about my family. "So is your family okay?"
Yes. They're okay. My pants are okay.
"It looks bad down there." The Strange Man put a hand on my naked arm. Then he moved his other hand onto my other arm, and then his mouth hit my mouth.
George Bush does not care about Black people.
True. Not a fan of Kanye, but he was right.
There are many things I may do to alienate myself from humanity. Alienate myself from the persons I love. Alienate myself from aliens. But what I'd never do is allow an entire city to sink into oblivion. And that's what happened 10 years ago--a government, which previously failed to protect a country from a terrorist attack, let a major city die. I was in a bad way then. But I was a citizen. I was not an entire government.
I own my mistakes.
GWB dances in New Orleans.
Who needs image rehabilitation? And who cares more about image?
Inappropriate sharing, incomprehensible ramblings, uncalled-for hostility: yup, it's a blog.
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