Saturday, November 20, 2010

Everything fails: don't drink the water (or conduct a real estate transaction, or use the freeway ramp)

Posted By on Sat, Nov 20, 2010 at 11:09 AM

Dear Huey Long:

Well, it's been a week here in New Orleans. First it was the highways; we're putting in this new freeway ramp, but it's closed down and a big mess because the concrete was a bad mix or something — we're not exactly sure, but it's all closed down now and there's a bunch of scary cracks in the infrastructure.

Then there's the computer crash affecting mortgage data and real estate sales in the city, which has been going on for about a month now with no end in sight. The City Council had an emergency meeting last night about it and didn't seem to come up with any answers ("no end in sight" was the phrase), but I suppose we can be reassured that they're on top of things because our clerk of court cared enough to phone into the emergency meeting.

And then late last night the water went out in most parts of the city. As usual, Twitter was on top of it right away. The water came back on pretty quickly, but a lot of people were in bed and didn't even know about it — they got up and made coffee, brushed their teeth, etc., before the city issued a boil-water advisory. Again, thanks, Twitter, because the city's new whizbang website, which is the official conduit for emergency information, still doesn't seem to know anything about it. Neither does the state website for the Department of Health & Hospitals, which actually issued the order.

You know that "every man a king" thing? It sure sounds good right now.

Whoops, my water's boiling. Gotta run. Anyway, happy Thanksgiving and give our love to the kids.

— K.

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