posted on Sep, 25 2006 @ 04:07 PM
I wake up every day to a city that a little more than a year ago was centered in the eyes and minds of americans for a few days. My window remains
open every night so that I may be awoken by the morning sun, its warmth and brilliance in my bed room with its interplay of shadows chasing across my
wall. No, I do not wake up to the beating of hammers or the sounds of buzzsaws however if I lived in a part of town not a mile away I would. Walking
outside in the mornings these days hits you with humidity that is almost breath taking (in a bad way). Yes, I leave my nebighorhood and see the many
trucks going to their work for the day, air conditioning services, window instlation, dump trucks hauling debris, and of course a few large 4 door
trucks carrying 8 hispanic workers pulling a trailer with loosely secured tools.
You walk around the city, you walk around anywhere, someone is telling thier story still and someone is inevitablly talking about "Rebirth" or
"Rebuilding". The news paper speaks of the failures and sucess of the City of New Orelans in the recent year. The news casters love to say how "New
Orleans is comming back". I see these things and turn my head in shame. Its all a lie I tell you. Don't get me wrong I love New Orleans. I know the
city streets better than any of my friends, I know where to get the best gumbo and new orleans coffee. Ive been a jazz musicain most of my life and
have seen hundredes of preformances from the Marsalias brothers to Pete Fountain. But alas I shake my head. Why? people ask me. "You love the city"
they say. However I am a studnet of histroy, one who denys ignorance, someone always looking for truth (what is truth?). I remember all the citys of
antiquity that have fallen to natural loss, how desperatly the people worked to save their cities and failed in the end. Am I a pessimist? no Im quite
the realist. No, im not saying new orleans cant come back, it quite can. I think of cities in ancient Sumer that fell to flodding, I think of Pompei
and many other places ravaged by natural disaster, Jericho built on a fault etc... People need to realize that this is not soemthing specail, its
happend throughout human history. We make mistakes we build our cities where tehy shouldnt be and eventually it catches up. I come to grips that New
Orleans will not exist in the nest 150 years but so many of my fellow people have not.
Yes, people speak of rebirth and how they love new orleans. Why? becasue it now has value in the eyes of america? I know numbers of people who talked
ill of new orleans before the storm but once it happend and they returned it was a city adorned in gold. "The city with the most character!" I hear
on the streets. but what I hear more than that and what you dont hear outside the city is "the city goverment is run by fools!" "They cant do
that!" "The crime rate is beyone comparision this is a hellish place!". My sister moved to texas after the stom and has seince returned with a
texas drivers liscence. I have heard too many times her asked "Do you like new orlenas?" with that hint of disgust. That slight hint of disaproval
and mallintent towards the city. Yeah, things are geting back to normal. People hate the city again.
But what about now? we are back in the eye of all america and everyone is proud to be from New Orleans. NPR aired a story this morning that was a
short lecture on the game tonight. Somethign was mentioned that tongiht when they show secnes of the French Qutr or of someone geting some raw oysters
New Orleans natives wont turn their heads but instead lift them up in pride as that symbolizes the strength of the people here and their spirit of
"rebirth". My point illustrated beuatifully.
Tonight the nation watches our team. Our pitufil discgraceful team. But tonight they are heroes to New Orleans natives. Why? I cant seem to find out.
They have let us down so many times. Ticket sales have threatned to sell the saints for years but alas they are now sold out for every game. SO many
times has that ball been fumbled on the 1 yard line or a 20 yard feild goal missed. So many times have we said "Dat's DEM AINTS!" But now they are
the Knights of Katrnia. Fighting for what? A city no one loved? A team no one liked?
Its all hype if you ask me. We are popular and "stylish" to be new orleans related. And no one wants to be the sore thumb. Hasn't this game gone
too far already? A national pre game show and enoug flair to make it seem like the superbowl. I drove around today and saw hundreds of people wearing
saints apperal. I have heard their are fairs in the city jsut for the game and bars giving outragesous specails because of it. Its all hype. Yeah its
important that the saints are finally back home in the dome but is it really all this big? Is it that big of a deal that all of the city and a great
portion of america will stop for 4 hours to watch? No its really not, its gone too far. People are making a big deal about a city they never loved and
a team they never liked. People are seeing the wrong things and for the wrong reasons. Its all hype I tell you. People outside the city have the
entirely wrong idea of just what is going on here and the media is showing that immage creating a hype that shouldnt be. Im glad and Im tolerant that
people are now somewhat in love with New Orleans. Its better than them commiting crimes or doing other wrong acts. But its for the wrong reasons.
Tonight I will drime my jeep to Magizine street in new orleans and proceed to Loyola. I will park my car and take an evening stroll through Audbon
park and enjoy the night, I will listen to the church bells toll for 7 oclock at Holy Name of Jesus Church, I will walk through the pathways admiring
the French architecture of the park and I will know that I am admireing New Orleans for its history and its heritage something that has always made
new orleans what it is. And all the while New Orleanians will be glued to their TV's wathing the part of new orleans that no one ever loved.