Monday, February 4, 2013

Oh. That's what that switch on my wall goes to....

I mean, there had always been duct tape over it and marked "DO NOT TURN OFF! EVER!" I got bored. Flipped it off and looked around, I didn't see anything happen. I went out for my smokes and energy drinks during the game because the streets would be less crowded. Everybody had found their spot. Returning home I passed the Dive on Toulouse and Jet the doorman mentioned that my good friends Dawna and Jeff were in there. That's when I found out about the black out.

I could honestly say that in my entire life, I never cared about, watched or paid any attention to a Super Bowl game. Up until the lights went out. I stayed to have a beer and watch sports casters look panicked while trying to fill the time without letting the world know the are truly the dimmest bulbs in the dome. I chatted for a while with two of my favorite people about what a "DERP" this is. We went from the coolest city in America to a national joke in 27 minutes. As a Quarter Rat, I'm pissed.

For well over a year now, the business and residents have been living in a construction zone. A daily barrage of jackhammers, pavement grinding dinosaur sized machines, asphalt machines and trucks operating dawn till dusk. Street closure pretty much means that your store is closed that day too. We were told to suck it up, take one for this great city. We want to look our best for when the Super Bowl gets here. Just live with the hassle, we'll all be rich.

If I wasn't so lazy, I'd Google the company that did the blocks and blocks of slate sidewalks. I can't remember where exactly, but they were out of Wisconsin or some place like that. When I first read the lettering on the white dump trucks I thought that was odd that a cheese headed contractor from up there got a city contract down here. We have unemployed down here too. Most of the guys doing the work looked like they might have questionable citizenship. However, I am not one to profile or ever be called a crazy birther. Just ignore it all I thought. The city probably got Federal funds when the congressman from Wisconsin said ok, but only if a financial backer of his could get the contract to do some of the work. This is New Orleans, sugar.

Did anybody in the past year drop a dime of corporate money to at least inspect the electrical system of the Dome?  It is kind of a key piece of infrastructure if you plan to host a Superbowl. I am only guessing that it was completely overhauled after the storm.  Sure there has been many events at the Super Dome since then. None with this many cameras, news crews, vendors, and countless other small power draws.  I'm not an electrical engineer so I won't even pretend to know. I do know that I can't use my bathroom heater and microwave at the same time. It's been tested. Hey Mitch, you went from "Pimp-Daddy-Mayor of all cities" to the mayor of Mayberry in the blink of an eye.

Just curious, did anybody notice if the lights ever went off on the Mercedes logo. A whole lot of money was spent on the exterior strip club lighting. One cheerleader plugs in a hairdryer and we lose a grid. What is this? North Korea? All this effort to improve and to promote us for tourism. Promising US higher revenue. Now folks won't to come down here out of fears of rolling black outs and the plague of Bourbon Street STDs. 

This was our conversation at the Dive. I chuckled "Speaking of electrical, remember that light switch on my apartment wall covered thick with duct tape?" As a long time resident of the building her eyes widened. "YEA! The one marked "Never Ever Turn Off!" 
"Uhm, yea, something like that..." 
"My god, you didn't turn it off, did you?" 
"No, no, no, of course not. I was just curious as to what it was for?" 
"After the storm, they were gerry-rigging things all over the city. One day the Entergy guy needed to tap into a free line temporarily to keep a relay on at the transformer that controls something else somewhere else. Why?"

"Nothing, no reason, got to go."