There are gigantic cockroaches here. Earlier one ran across the sidewalk in front of me. It was the size of my cat. Sweet Jesus. The good thing about that is you can see them a block away and cross the street before they get to you. My roommate/ common law husband has issues with roaches. Back in the day when we lived in Austin I went to his house, it was more of a shed than an actual house, and his couch was in the front yard.
"I was going to Casino, you want to go?" As I nervously eyed the couch.
"Sure, let me get some shoes." Without making an outward sign that he is aware of the couch.
"So, what's up with your couch?"
"A roach ran under it."
"I can help you move it back in." I thought I understood now.
"Nope, I'm done with that couch."
"You're just going to leave it out in the yard b/c a roach ran under it? Didn't you kill the roach after you moved it?"
"No, never found the roach, it might be in the couch. I'm done with that couch."
And then we went to the Casino. I don't know whatever happened to the couch but it never did go back inside.
Anyway my roommate is much better writer than me and he seems to be updating his blog
more often. It's worth checking out.
It’s incredibly muggy. There seems to be a continuous haze in the city. It also might be the fact that my glasses keep fogging up. I’m not really sure.
I also smell terrible. I have not stopped sweating since I had that shower this morning. I need to start taking an afternoon shower. My shirt was soaked in about 4 minutes. Sweet Jesus. Someone told me that you stop sweating once you dehydrate enough, so I have that to look forward to.
I keep seeing spray paint on buildings. I described it as graffiti but a resident told me it wasn’t graffiti, I think that spray paint on the side of a building is only graffiti if a Hispanic youth does it. Very confusing. Anyway the spray paint is in the shape of an X. There is usually a series of initials, a date, and then a number in the different quadrants. In the aftermath of Katrina different groups went through the neighborhoods checking houses. The date is when the house was checked. The initials represent the agency that did the check, usually they’re LSP or CHP. That stands for Louisiana State Police and California Highway Patrol. I’ve also seen initials Dallas Fort Worth and the ASPCA.
The other number represents either pets or people. In my neighborhood the paint is usually on the porch or on the street in front of the house. I saw one that said there was 1 survivor found and I saw some that listed pets. Sometimes with the pets there would be information about where the pets could be found.
There is also a marking that says TFW, Toxic Flood Water. I went to the 9th Ward today. You can see water lines 7 feet high on the houses. The dates are ridiculous too. In my neighborhood most of the houses were checked on 9-11, the hurricane was on 8-29. In the 9th Ward the dates are in November. I also haven't seen a single NOPD spray painted. They apparently didn't do a goddamn thing during the hurricane. You can find T Shirts all over town that say "NOPD, Not Our Problem Dude".
As I was driving around tonight to find handkerchiefs so that I could mop the continuous cascade of sweat off my brow I could see houses where these X’s weren’t on the porch but on the top floors of two story houses. That was kind of chilling.
I’m staying in the Marigny, not pronounced Meringue in case you were inclined to say that in public for some reason, and the area is known as the “sliver by the river” because this neighborhood didn’t flood. The houses are all in pretty good condition. But all you have to do is go 4 blocks north and everything is completely different.
My neighborhood has a lot of people walking around and it’s fairly busy. Outside this neighborhood there will be maybe one house in four or five square blocks with a light on. Most of the city is still pretty empty. The mayor wants people to move back but there's no place for them to live. The trash isn't being picked up and the mail delivery is spotty. The USPS still doesn't deliver mail in most of the neighborhoods. Neither rain, nor sleet, nor gloom of night, just total government incompetence will stop the mail.