Saturday, August 26, 2006

Kent State, Rumors, and Katrina

Kent State Speech

Back in February, Anderson gave a speech to an overflow crowd at Kent State. WLC who brought us that great birthday video has kindly uploaded a video snippet from the Kent State interview. From WLC's blog...Before the speech, Anderson showed up in our room. (Total has two extra rooms for late-arrived audiences.) The moderator told us we had two questions for him. So, first question was about how he chose the issue to report. The answer? Check the video I took. (Sorry for the short record and blur.)

After that, Anderson saw the book, Families, written by his dad, Wyatt Cooper, in front of an old lady. He was very surprised and happy. And when he found out it was a library book, he laughed. He opened it and read the words, “Families: A Memoir and a Celebration,” and said he was very young (in this book). At that moment, it felt like he found and recalled his memoir. (That was an emotional part.)...more >>.

Thanks for uploading this WLC!!!

The Rumor Mill

Earlier this week, on another Anderfan blog, someone tried to start spreading rumors that Anderson was a druggie. Of all the rumors I've heard on Anderson this is one rumor that has never been close to being substantiated. In fact, back in October 2005 on Newsnight, Anderson commented "Yes, in New York City, I mean, I have a number of friends actually who have started using [meth] and their lives have been complete destroyed. Two people in particular who have held jobs, and a lot of people who started, have jobs, and it makes them feel more efficient at work, but it very quickly -- in these two people's case, I mean, I've lost contact with them. Their lives are destroyed. They've like lost their jobs, their apartments, everything." (photo courtesy Anderson's Funhouse)

Katrina - A Year Later

(photo courtesy of Sheryn)
I can't believe it has been a year since Katrina hit the Gulf Coast. The little bit of tropical storm force wind I got was unnerving so I can't fathom having to endure hurricane force winds and a tidal surge. The next few days I sat there helpless and stunned as the events unfolded. One year later they are still picking up the pieces. I read an article today that sums up the status of things all over South Mississippi.

"The American attention span is pretty short," said Aletha Burge, director of community initiatives at United Way of South Mississippi. "We talk to people all the time who say, Y'all must be pretty much back to normal.' But there's nothing normal about the situation here." For example, Hancock County has only two grocery stores, she said. At the beachfront, maybe five homes are being rebuilt. "We're talking about miles of slabs, deserted," she said, describing the Gulf Coast beachfront. "And folks need a lot of help with rebuilding. As slow as the grant money and everything else has been, we rely on volunteers to keep things moving while people are still waiting for insurance payments and grants."

Hancock County's volunteer coordinator, Kathleen Johnson, speculates the Mississippi Gulf Coast actually may be hurt by good publicity. "I believe people are hearing the message that we are rebuilding and we are well on the way to recovery,which is true," Johnson noted. "But we are just now starting the reconstruction." She's seen the great things done by the churches, school groups and civic organizations. But now school's back in session, it's the height of hurricane season and South Mississippi's oppressive August heat may be more than some folks can take. "We've got others promised to come down in October and we're seeing the booking numbers increasing, but not at the rate we're going to need to rebuild the 10,000 or so damaged homes we have here in Hancock County." Destruction also was widespread in Jackson and Harrison coastal counties, then as far north as Hattiesburg and as far west as McComb.

Burge said volunteers with construction skills are needed. "It's one thing to gut a house, and another thing to put it back together," she said. The Methodist volunteer camp site on the beach in Bay St. Louis is capable of housing about 100 volunteers. Right now, the camp is empty.

She's at a loss for immediate volunteer help.

"I have not heard of really any more, but maybe 15, in town at this time," she noted. "We're probably never going to see the numbers that we've seen in the past that's a reality as long as there's not that hype on the national TV that we had during the height of this.

"It's just not going to happen."

Anderson will be along the MS Gulf Coast and in NOLA this week. There is progress but I hope he'll focus on everything that still needs to be done and show ways people can volunteer.

Friday, I was talking to a coworker who had just gotten off the phone from someone who lives on the Gulf Coast. He said they are on pins and needles about Ernesto. Even before the projected path was announced they were already making evacuation plans. As much as we need the rain in this region I don't wish a tropical system on anyone. All of you across the Gulf Coast are in my thoughts and prayers. Stay safe and dry! If you need to evacuate, your neighbors to the north are ready to welcome you again.

Looking for the Anderchronicles? On its own blog for your reading pleasure. Check it out at:


Krysti said...

Great Blogg Tonight. I personally have not gotten over what happened in NOLA, I use to live there meny years ago and have friends who are still picking up the pieces. I now live in Tampa Florida and i am crossing my fingures because it was advised today that we are in the cone of error for the path of Ernesto. Lets hope that by the time It hits any of us on the gulf coast that it is a very weak storm.

sydney said...

Anyone who would say Anderson's a druggie, well, must be on drugs themselves. At the pace he keeps up, he would've crashed and burned a long time ago if he had this kind of problem.

Jealousy is an ugly thing.

Phebe said...

Thank you WLC for sharing your video. Thanks to you Quitty, for a wonderful blog.
It seems Quitman's new nickname, provided by Sheryn, has caught on.

Unknown said...

krysti, I'm not too far you, I bet. Right now the current path goes right through Tampa! We all know how things can change,though.

Good blog, Quitty!

Jennifer said...

To krysti and purple tie...hope you guys dodge Ernesto...but maybe Anderson would will show up in Tampa just in case. Positive thoughts headed your way.

And there are several ugly rumors being started on another blog. They are disgraceful and should have been removed from the thread. Ick.

Quitty said...

Krysti and Purple Tie, when I woke up this morning and saw the path I thought uh, oh!!! I hope it is a weak storm too.

Sheryn said...

Great blog today, Quitty!

The drug thing really gets me. And yeah, he can function drugged up for how long??? The only drug Anderson runs on is adrenaline.

I certainly cannot believe it's been one year since Katrina hit the Gulf Coast.

I hope everyone in the path of Ernesto stays safe.

Unknown said...

Quitty thanks for the blog everyone in NOLA is glad Ernesto isn't coming. Anderson and crew have blown into town and are out filming as we speak. Lots of media down here and you can't get near anything by the water. Everyone down here has nothing but good things to say about Anderson and his name is so sexy when pronounced with a southern accent.

When I saw the statement of AC being a druggie on that blog I about cringed. If anyone isn't it's Anderson he's too smart and too driven to do that.

Linnea said...

Love your blog today. I'm seriously considering going to LA or MS after Labor Day and volunteering. I've yet to find a job, and need something to keep me busy. I'm sending some good karma to the folks in Florida, hoping that Ernesto won't be too bad.

As for the druggie rumors... I just can't believe how low some people will stoop. I have a degree in psych, and in my experience, people who start rumors do it either because they want to feel important, or because they just have nothing better to do. You should have heard the rumors that went around at one place I used to work! I swear, it was worse than a living soap opera. One of my friends and I used to refer to it as "As the Turbine Turns" (it was a nuclear power plant). I worked in security, and everyone there was deeply bored, so it really wasn't any wonder that the rumor mill was so active. Actually, I used to call it "the radioactive grapevine" because any rumor that got started not only spread at warp speed, but also mutated as it went along.

Quitty said...

Thanks for the comments. I have a southern accent so I guess my pronounciation of Anderson sounds sezy as well...LOL. Y'all have fun in NOLA. I need to get my butt down there and spend some money.

As far as volunteering goes, living down here I see why the numbers have dwindled this summer. It is too hot and humid to be doing anything outside. If you aren't acclimated to it, it is almost impossible to endure for more than 1 hour. Hopefully, the volunteer numbers will pick up beginning the end of September when things cool off a little.