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Galveston September 10, 2008

Posted by The Typist in New Orleans, NOLA, Toulouse Street.
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3 comments

Every passing forecast is sending Hurricane Ike further north past Matagorda Bay toward Galveston, with the hurricane watch extended as far east as Cameron Parish, La.

Sadly, I’ve read that the mayor of Galveston has not called for a mandatory evacuation because she doesn’t want people to go through another Rita. (Next time you want to criticize New Orleans evacuation, particularly in Katrina, remember over 100 people died from the attempted and failed evacuation of the Houston/Galveston area. Way to go).

This is insane. Galveston is behind a 17 foot seawall. Here is a map of a Category 4 storm surge with Galveston in the cross hairs (that is, the close in north east quadrant). Eighteen feet of water minus a 17 foot floodwall equals a alarming inability in this official’s ability to do simple arithmetic. Perhaps we should send Nagin over to show her how panicking a population into evacuating is done.

I never liked “country” music when I was a kid, and never watched the Glen Campbell Good Time Hour. I once attended a tiny music festival in New York Mills, a small town in northwest Minnesota with big cultural ambitions. A friend was terribly excited to see some guy in a top hat who was routinely on the Glen Campbell Good Time Hour. I had no idea who he was. I was there to see Jouma Kaukonen (formerly of the Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna), who hailed from a nearby town and so was roped into the festival. Both of these celebrities played for an audience that might have been 200 people. We had an amazing time sitting literally at the feet of our childhood idols.

While I don’t believe I ever watched an episode of the Glen Campbell Good Time Hour I have to admit I have a soft spot for his songs. If you scrape off the gloopy Nashville Strings overlays they always used on his recordings, they were good folksy pop that told a story, and I’m a sucker for guys who tell stories. This one is not really about Galveston as much as it is about some sad, lonely kid in Vietnam dreaming of home. The pink tint on this vid is Odd (but then, we like odd) and it’s the best of the lot I could find It’s the original music video (although I don’t think they called them that back then), instead of the Fat Elvis version of Mr. Campbell probably coming to a casino near you soon.

Galveston, we’re pulling for you. Here’s the one lesson we have for you from Katrina, Rita and Gustav. Your leaders are idiots (like ours). Following your instincts is the only way to be safe. Time for a nice evacation to Austin, don’t you think?