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Keith John Paul Horcasitas

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Hurricane Isaac, Simon & Simon, Perry Mason, the Saints and Labor Day
By Keith John Paul Horcasitas
Saturday, September 01, 2012

Rated "G" by the Author.

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Hurricanes Isaac & Katrina Reflections and Labor Day

As we were all getting ready to honker down with all the anticipation of Hurricane Isaac, coincidentally at the same time of Hurricane Katrina's 7th Anniversary, I made a quick run to the Bluebonnet Library to pick up some DVDs that I could watch in the down-time of being home-bound during a storm – as long as you have electricity or a generator. It was neat to pick up “Simon & Simon,” as well as “Perry Mason.” Also, I chanced upon a copy of the highlights of the New Orleans Saints miracle season that led to their Super Bowl Championship in 2009.

After the plywood boards were in place on the windows and we had removed all of the loose items from outside, the storm made its presence, so I put in the Simon & Simon DVD. That brought me back to my graduate school days at SDSU, as I had forgotten that the setting for the show was “America's Finest City,” close to where I used to love to cross the border to Tijuana and Ensenada for great food and fun!

The next day, as we weathered some strong winds and heavy rain, I popped in the Perry Mason DVD and enjoyed a show that brought me back to my college days. The episode entailed a plot about a professor who had been killed after stealing someone's authorship for a book. Embedded in the tale was a scene in which the professor had his students take a test by writing a narrative about Thomas Paine in a Blue Book.

If you ask most folks about a “Blue Book,” you would hear a lot of remarks about how they had gotten one of those for buying a used car or some other vehicle. And while I certainly had done the same in my previous purchases of “pre-owned” cars, I used the Blue Books for tests so much more, since we had to do a lot of narrative testing in my field of Social Work.

Just in getting the Blue Book from the Loyola University Book Store, in readying for mid-terms or finals, was as ordeal as they would run out of them all of the time. And no matter if I tried to make my own version of the exam books when I couldn't find the real ones, I would always get docked by my professors for not complying with their OCD-oriented directives.

What a way to end the cabin-fever generating Hurricane Isaac than to re-watch the Saints win the 2009 Super Bowl! Especially as we have gone through such a painful and weird preseason with “Bounty-gate,” Head Coach Sean Payton and other coaches and players being sanctioned, as well as the long drama of the re-signing Drew Brees for $ 100 million, it was great to be reminded that we can do it again and in what better place for the 2013 Super Bowl: New Orleans!

As I was watching some on-going coverage of Hurricane Isaac and reminded of how today, August 29th is the 7th Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, I couldn't believe the sight of some folks today having to be rescued from their rooftops in LaPlace, just like had occurred 7 years ago in New Orleans. A levee breached today in Plaquemines Parish brought a flashback to Lakeview's 17th Street Canal and the 9th Ward's Industrial Canal breaks in the Big Easy.

We certainly said some extra prayers tonight for all those in our memories who are not with us anymore from Katrina and those affected by Isaac. Storms certainly have a way of bringing us together, however painful at times. And it seems like we play so many more non-electronic and board games face-to-face, instead of Face-booking, when we are faced having to do without electricity. How displaced do we have to get in order to replace our priorities?

So as we return to some sense of normalcy in the next few days, I'll look forward to the upcoming Labor Day weekend when we hope to take our annual beach trip to Lillian Alabama near to Pensacola Beach. I'm still awaiting word from the KOA Camp if our Kabin on the beach is usable after the storm, as the reach of Hurricane Isaac seemed so vast. We used to always tent at Ft. Pickens, but haven't been able to since 2004 when Hurricane Ivan devastated that area.

Well, while tomorrow I dread having to take the plywood off the windows, put all the outdoor stuff back in place, fix the gate on the fence that got blown off, clean all of the leaves and branches out of the pool and the yard and realize that hurricane season is long from being over, I may just cancel the Labor Day trip and make it a stay-cation! Shucks, who needs sand when you've got your own pool!

Post-script: Today is Saturday, September 1, 2012 - we got all cleaned up on Thursday, August 30th, and I was able to get the minimal damage we had sustained cleared up with help from the boys and my wife. I even got in the pool Thursday to get most of the leaves out, but then we got the call that our KOA was open for business and had hardly been touched by Isaac.

When I had finished my day of work yesterday, we made it here safe and sound last night - after going through a lot of traffic - people who were unfortunately dealing with rising waters in LaPlace and all over the place. Our hearts and prayers go out to all of them, some of whom are going through PTSD-like experiences that Isaac has provoked related to Hurricane Katrina.

This morning, as we ventured out of our KOA Kabin right onto the beach, my wife took the attached sunrise pic. We all can find hope in the Light of God - the full moon last night was spectacular! It was fun fishing late last night, and JP caught and released a hermit crab this morning. Labor Day Blessings on all!

Keith John Paul Horcasitas, LCSW, MHA, 1133 Knollhaven Drive, BRLA 70810,, August 29, 2012.  

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Reviewed by Donna Chandler 9/1/2012
It is a beautiful picture that you've attached to your story. I'm glad your damage was minimual. My daughter and son-in-law just moved to New Orleans a few weeks ago. Issac was their first hurricane experience. Also they too, had very little in the way of damage, they were most impressed with the power of the storm and have no desire to see any more!


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