Gentilly Girl- a part of the 99%

June 1, 2006

Taking Bets on “What Is Going to Kill me First…”

Filed under: Aside,Civic Blogging,New Orleans — Tags: , — Morwen Madrigal @ 5:03 pm

Hey kids! It’s the first day of Hurricane Season 2006! (Proudly sponsored by Mother Nature, FEMA, and the Corps.) Break out the inflatable matresses (dual purpose… bed and boat), a floating ice chest for the beer and wine, and many cans of tuna.

It’s hard to be funny right now: I’m starting to feel my mortality, and it sux. I have survived volcanoes, storms, blizzards in the Wilderness, a major earthquake, blindness, 22 years of HIV, a brain infection, electrocution, drowning, and the Reagan/Bush Era. I have been homeless, down and out… been on top of the World. Won many an issue concerning environmental and Civil Rights, and spent many days in the Brig for those I lost. It’s called a balanced Life, but why am I so down at this time?

For the last two months i’ve been battling allergies and depression. Finally I had started to feel better, more lively. Well, that’s true until yesterday. I went to the VA to see my doc, nothin’ special, just saying Hi! and talking out some treatment issues. Turns out she cancelled all of her appointments for the day due to meetings. (She runs the hospital.) It was okay, happens often when you have the best doc around.

So I did my normal post-visit routine: I walk to the Starlight, checking out shops, getting little things, visiting Krystal for my guilty pleasure, and then wait for Betts to pick me up and carry me home. Except… yesterday was different.

As I wandered the CDB, looking at all of the destruction and reconstruction, I passed the Orpheum, and some workers were sweeping the dust and debris from a high-rise across the street. I didn’t think anything of it, and continued on my merry way. Was feeling really good. Had a few drinks at the bar toasting the First of June, and laughing with friends over what will come this season.

Went home and Betts started doing some ribs in Woody’s, and I took a nap. A few hours later I awoke in a panic: couldn’t breathe… sinuses completely blocked, my eyes were bulging and full of pain. I spent the next 12 hours in total agony… Betts wanted to take me to BR so I could go to the ER.

It’s all better know, and I’m doing a post-mortum on what happened. I think I have figured it out: The guys sweeping all of that dust from that tall building. There should have been containment on that project, just as with radioactive or asbestos removal projects. These big building clean-ups contain many more times the mold spores, lead, and other junk than a house does, and they were just sweeping it all out into the street. I happened to be there at the wrong time.

I believe that all of these large projects MUST be under containment. I don’t care if the workers don’t take care of themselves in the doing of the work, but they should not endanger others.

The solution for now is that I can’t have my little ritual of just walking around the city anymore. (Betts is adamant about this.) Can’t spend time watching the interaction of different folks… witnessing the weirdness that is New Orleans. I can’t enjoy my city.

So….. for the next six months I get to wonder whether the agent of my demise will be by water or dust and other little thingies, just like everyone else. Wanna place a wager?

Thanx COE. You managed to take even more away then our home. Screw you!

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