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Phone Call from New Orleans

Just got a phone call from my friend and co-worker Howie. He’s back in New Orleans. He was lucky. His home escaped damage.

But he’s upset and wanted to rant about it. He said that there’s plenty of food and water getting distributed, but people can’t cut through the red tape to get the financial assistance the feds have promised. He spoke of eight-hour waits in lines that led nowhere and phone calls to hotlines that yield nothing but busy signals.

Bottom line: FEMA’s still screwing up.

He asked me to post this for him since he has no internet access.

He tried to visit my house but was blocked by still-flooded streets. He was able to drive around town more or less unhindered, because he “fits a certain profile” — i.e., he’s white. He also pretended to be with the United Way. He had a sticker.

He said he’s tired of people saying “at least we’re alive.” Yeah, we’re alive, but it still sucks.

I told him about Malik holding out in Algiers, so he plans to pay a visit tomorrow.

Published inFriendsKatrinaNew Orleans


  1. Anonymous Anonymous

    why would anyone go back at this time..the toxicity of new oeleans is not arguable. it couldnot be safe to be back there yet. what could be worth your life!

  2. I agree that it still sucks. You hate to complain when people lost everything, but most of us have lost a lot. We’re looking at financial and professional setbacks that will take years to recover from.

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