Flood 2006: Can’t find the words

Heavy subjects aren’t usually my forte. However, I wanted this week’s column to be about the flood, and a mature offering seemed unavoidable.

I was hoping my words would roar and be coarse like June 28, yet heartfelt and strong like the days, weeks and months after. But, per usual, the pull of stupidity was a constant drag. And making a point that matters – like fulfilling my dream of one day owning a bar/Laundromat called “front-loaded” – wasn’t easy.

It started with a Top Ten List:

“Ten Best Ways to Get Back at Your Ex During a Flood.”

10. Collect all their stuff that’s still at your place and put it in the lowest part of the basement. Then sit back and let the magic happen. Trust me, losing your washer and dryer won’t feel so bad if you can blame Mother Nature for warping their favorite Barry Manilow, records too.



9. Have two-dozen anchovy and Hawaiian-style pizzas delivered to your ex’s house. Yeah, normally they’d just refuse them. But how can they this time if the poor delivery guy drove through rushing water and risked his life to get there? Nobody – not even your ex – can be that cold. Bon Appétit!

8. Call him/her up and say you’re stranded at work. See if he/she will give you a hand and start moving stuff out of your pad while you try to get home. Meanwhile, call a TV news station and say there is someone looting stuff at (insert your address here) and that they should send the sky-cam over to catch them in the act (burns more when the world is watching).

The rest of my ideas were either completely stupid or totally classless. What’s left of my soul kicked-in and cut off the list there.

So, I began working on another, happier, Top Ten List. It turns out I should have stuck to being an idiot:

“Ten Most Uplifting Things People Could Do During a Flood to Cheer Up Their Community.”

10. Have a parade. If this disaster is going to happen again, we might as well not get down about it. Committees, businesses and organizations can make a bunch of inspirational floats (that float) throughout the year and, if God forbid the time ever comes, the city will pull them out of storage and ship them down flooded streets carrying messages of hope. Distraught residents can take a break from their flood troubles and watch them go passed (and probably wonder what the hell they’re looking at). Either way it’d be the first of its kind.

9. Offer free gondola rides. If we’re going to have the water, we might as well be Venice, right?

That list obviously proved to be even shorter, and worse, than the other one.

Ready to bag the whole thing and do a crummy movie review instead, I finally thought of something that wasn’t part of any dumb list or some sophomoric attempt at being funny, and that is: you don’t have to get back at your ex or cheer up your community in some cheesy way. You just have to press on. Show them and that damn flood that you still got it. And, after talking with some people who were hard-hit last June, I can say it sounds like a lot of them have done just that.

Some of them can even laugh about it.

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