Wednesday, May 30, 2007

I Know This Guy From Somewhere

So I'm watching my local NBC station, and there's some strange but vaguely familiar tall African-American bald guy in a suit speaking about my city of New Orleans. He's telling jokes but nobody is laughing. I know I know this dude. He looks like a younger Louis Gossett Jr. He just asked the City Council to stand and they did. He must be important. The video feed is all screwed up so I know it's local.

Later Note The bald guy says he's the mayor, and he says this is his first state of the city address since Katrina. Is this the legendary C. Ray Nagin? I thought he was living in Dallas, what is he doing here at the WWII museum? He's talking about the word "one" quite a bit. I remember a year ago when he was campaigning, and he said public education was his top priority. I can tell you first hand that our schools are worse than they were before Katrina, if that is possible. It's like subtracting from negative infinity. He's talking tough about the failure of the federal levees though, could I become a Nagin fan?

Later Later Note This platform is too big for the Cox Exec. My friend Bart's speech at the steps of City Hall was much more memorable. I hope he gets off the script and improvises. The media likes that. I've noticed it's rare that he gets a sentence out without a mistake/stutter. He looks less buff than a few months ago. He just said finally, is it almost over?

Later Later Later Note He just asked the audience not to clap when he said he mentioned controversial things. He's amusing. Where was this speech at the 1,2,3,4,5,6 7,8 month anniversaries of Katrina? Now almost two years later? Better late than never. He said our bond from Wall Street is now stable, and "a good investment." What happened all of the sudden that he wants to be our leader again? Will this help his book deal? His speech is on a teleprompter. Why does he screw up at least one word per sentence? I'm so confused. Did he just say "state of the art tecnhology platform"? He said we can get permits in our pajamas from home. After many hours wasted at city hall in lines, I can say that is bullshit. Oh, they just fixed the microphone problem. Thanks state of the art technology platform. He says New Orleanians fight for their insurance proceeds. That's me. thanks for the shout out C. Ray. He has been making fun of the Road Home Project. Thanks for all your leadership on this issue C. Ray over the past 22 months. He just said he gets worried. He says he's gone to battle with his insurance company. He said his new roof leaks. Is that his roof in Texas?

Later Later Later Later Note He says he'll be addressing us again tomorrow night. Who lit the fire under his butt? Maybe he just heard he was reelected. Why didn't they tell him sooner? Now education is the last of his priorities. First he brings up sanitation. "Lemony Fresh French Quarter." What about the kids not passing the 4th and 8th grade with LEAP tests? What about the murder capital of the country? Lemony fresh, mmmm. He's publically thanking the bitch, I mean Veronica White. I need another drink.

Later Later Later Later Later Note I got the drink and I needed it. It's a dirty martini. The bald guy on the TV said quite a bit about roads and FEMA. He said three streets were repaired. That's impressive. Only 500,000 to go. Maybe he'll start on my street. Oh shit! He's talking about the "Pothole Killer" again, and he said there is a second one of these "state of the art" vehicles. Now he's talking about health care, and it turns out it is the fault of the state. Nagin won't give up on this one. I feel better already. Maybe it's the Higgins Landing Craft boat in the background, but this guy seems like he means business. Uh Oh, technical difficulty again in this technologically advanced city. He's talking about crime now. He's making less mistakes now, perhaps it was nerves earlier. He just thanked Warren Riley, the police chief. Online there is a poll that says 74% of voters say he is way off base. How did this guy win reelection? I thought once he was in office he would make the hard but necessary decisions. But that was a year ago, and here he is tonight. Oh my god he is spinning the crime stats, saying he is encouraged. But he says "we are not satisfied." Oh, there that word "technology" is again. The crime cameras are "witnesses that cannot be intimidated" he says. He just said helicoptors will patrol our city through the night. The audience is applauding. I'm sick. He said Paul Pastorek's school of the future is a miracle. It seems that 1 minute was all the time he had for schools. Now we're on to Ed Blakely, and more jokes.

Later Later Later Later Later Later Note He said the Unified New Orleans Plan was the People's Plan. Actually, the people had their plan earlier, and the UNOP was a watered down version. Now it is good and affordible housing. He pledges that everyone who wants to return can to affordable housing in New Orleans. He of course is a hypocrite. Many public housing facilities were ready to open 1.5 years ago, but he's kept them shut. Oh shit, he said he wants to speak frankly. Please stay on script Nagin. Wait, he's saying what I want him to say. He mentioned Bush's speech at Jackson Square. He said the promise is unfulfilled. He thanked congress for waiving the 10% matching fund. He's disappointed that in this time of record state surplesses the region has not been prioritized in this state legislative session. He ways "we are one Louisiana." I know we're not after trying to charter a school. Now he mentions N.O. recovery means LA will recovery. He mentioned medication will help us recover. He knows from personal experience. This speech is way too long. He needs more of these with less contents. He just said "in closing" thank God. He said "Lord knows we've done enough planning" and 4 people laughed. He just agreed with George Michael to "choose life." And now, "one nation, under God, with liberty and justice for all, and justice for all, and justice for all" and 6 people clapped. Now the "it's not our fault" part. Who writes these speeches? "We need help, we need fairness, and we need it now." I agree with that. "We want the whole city fixed." He just admitted he's off teleprompter. He just told people out of here we will rebuild the city and get them back. He said they are suffering more than those who live here, but I doubt it.


Anonymous Adrastos said...

You have a stronger stomach than I do, Michael.

10:41 PM  
Blogger Leigh C. said...

It must be all the drinks bolstering your resolve.

6:44 AM  
Blogger celcus said...

Amazing, you made it all the way through. All I can say is: WHY?

9:54 AM  
Blogger Michael Homan said...

Why? I couldn't have done it without the martini. It was a big glass too, with three olives.

10:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What sort of control did the mayor ever have over public education in New Orleans in the first place? Wasn't talking about education for him sort of like George HW Bush yapping on and on about the death penalty and how he was all for it, when the death penalty was and still is overwhelmingly more of a state issue?

11:25 AM  
Blogger New Orleans Nation said...

In what may be an extremely masochistic procedure, we'll be reading the speech on WTUL 91.5FM at midnight tonight, complete with musical accompaniment. But please beware sudden dead air.

3:58 PM  
Blogger Cursed Tea said...

"He said "Lord knows we've done enough planning" and 4 people laughed."

Brilliant!!! Says it all! And makes me appreciate the fact that I don't have a TV so I just read his witterings in hard copy!! Although I'd employ you to describe the TV aspect anyday - well I would if I were rich and didn't live in NOLA!!

Best Wishes

4:37 PM  

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