The Devil Came Down to Louisiana

September 2, 2005

Like the rest of America, I’ve been frustrated and saddened by the influx of a big chunk of the Atlantic into the swamp formerly known as New Orleans. Putting aside for a moment the political and financial problems that may or may not have contributed to the disaster, the response on the ground has been … disappointing. The storyteller in me wanted to hear an uplifting message from the muck. People coming together to fight a common foe, ensuring mutual survival and comfort while enduring unendurable hardship.

Instead, the dead lie in the streets and GAPs are looted for their wares. Rescue efforts are shot at by the citizenry they are attempting to save, and the whole tooth and nail thing reasserts itself in force within the NO disaster zone. If you head over to the Shadowrun Timeline and scroll down to “Bug City”, you’ll find the tale of the city of Chicago turned into one big nest by an explosive release of malign Bug Spirits. Putting aside the fantastical nature for a moment, the tenor of the sourcebook that covers this event depicts a harsh reality, “Living in Oblivion”. If you did a word usage comparison between the coverage of this event and the Bug City book, I imagine you’d find more than a few commonalities.

There are some rays of hope, though. Leave it to the angry system administrators to create a port in the storm. The blog known simply as The Interdictor details the experience that a hearty band of folk holed up in a high rise in downtown New Orleans are having as they ride this thing out. Despite the shady background of his employers, when several hundred thousand dollars worth of networking gear is threatened, you have to step up. I’m glad to know there is someone down there keeping to his head and his gut.

Interdictor’s coverage has prompted me to toss some money in the direction of the Red Cross. If you have the means to do so, they can use all the help they can get.

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