August is the cruelest month...

In May of 2005 I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer and in August of 2005 after the second round of chemo my husband and I decided to evacuate for Hurricane Katrina. We didn't have a logical conversation instead it was mostly a series of fights all culminating with the decision that spending 12 hours in a car with 2 dogs, our daughter and me laying on the floor vomiting would be better than any amount of time spent with no air conditioning.

We ended up in Austin, and eventually the Convention Center. Where I had the good fortune to get up close and personal with Dick Cheney. We had been "banded" and were able to enter the outer perimeter of the Convention Center, which was like being in the cheap seats of Dante's Inferno. They had locked all the entry doors and unfortunately locked us out. So while I puked my way around the outside trying to get back in Dick was showing his compassionate conservatism for the cameras. As we rounded the corner I got close enough to tell Dick to go fuck himself as he exited.

That was the day I got mad and that was probably the day that Karl Rove was plotting the spin that would damm New Orleanians to hell, for just being people.

As time passed and we returned to New Orleans and our flooded house I figured recovery meant cleaning up your shit, helping some other people clean up their shit and then get back to the business of just having a life.

I had no idea I would turn into a recovery zealot and watchdog. Uncovering the non policy of demolishing people's houses while they waited to figure out the nightmare of Insurance, and The Road {from hell} Home.

As we continued to watch the bulldozer death march we tried to figure out if it was plain old dumb or something more sinister. What we discovered was a mixture of both. We were so glad CNN showed up to whore us out for the Second Anniversary Special, our thinking was the City would sit up and take notice, they did not.

So we spent the next year in trench warfare with the City, fighting for each house one by one, and while we were fighting we heard about this great program which would provide free gutting for Seniors, we looked for results and when we did we found a hornets nest of corruption and malfeasance.

And finally they noticed us, the bloggers the fanatics the virtual tribe of warriors. We stood up and we will not sit down again.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.
-Margaret Mead

Or to paraphrase : Never underestimate that a small group of pissed off citizens can change your City.

In Memory of Ashley