(1)I still remember the first time I smelled brain.
It was my grandfather, cracking open the skulls of squirrels he’d killed. They’d scamper down the sides of pecans and live oaks among the Louisiana timbers where I grew up, enter his sights—then, oblivion. (2) At 21, he started sweeping the floors in a morgue in New Orleans’ Jefferson Parish. When he assisted with his first autopsy, his stomach proved as unflinching as his curiosity. In the late 1980s, he became one of the country’s youngest medicolegal death investigators,
logging 7,000 autopsies and 3,000 next-of-kin notifications around New Orleans, then Atlanta. (3) Morgan relates gruesome tales of true crime scene experiences while weaving in parallels from his own (often dark) adolescence in Louisiana. After so many years of performing autopsies and doing one of the most horrific and traumatic—and generally unrecognized—jobs, Morgan was diagnosed with severe PTSD and forced into retirement from fieldwork. (Warning: Very disturbing photos in the first and third links. Very detailed talk of murder, suicide, and prostitution)
posted by josher71
on Sep 5, 2014 -
Kali couldn’t hold her gaze. Her eyes rolled back into her head. She had an appointment for 3 p.m., but around noon, Traci called her husband, Joseph. “I got her in, but I don’t know if she’s going to make it that long.”
This is the story
of how Kali Hardig became the third known survivor of the naegleria fowleri
posted by threeants
on Jul 20, 2014 -
"One night in August 2012, after months of unexplained seismic activity and mysterious bubbling on the bayou, a sinkhole opened up on a plot of land leased by the petrochemical company Texas Brine, forcing an immediate evacuation of Bayou Corne's 350 residents—an exodus that still has no end in sight
." [more inside]
posted by maxwelton
on Aug 22, 2013 -
You keep doing your work, because you have to, because it's your calling... one does their work for the people. And the more people you can touch, the more wonderful it is...
Patti Smith's Advice to the young [more inside]
posted by nickrussell
on Apr 9, 2013 -
Brad Pitt's Make It Right
foundation has committed millions to try and revitalize New Orleans' Lower 9th Ward by building 150 affordable, green, storm-resistant homes from designs by the likes of Gehry Partners
, Kieran Timberlake
, and McDonough + Partners
. Thing is, the ward doesn't have enough residents to attract stores and services, so no one wants to live there. Meanwhile, the city continues to follow through on millions in commitments to rebuild roads on streets where no one now lives, and to erect police stations and schools for a lonely, "barren moonscape" of a neighborhood. About 90 households, primarily elderly people, are living in futuristic homes that most Americans would covet, and yet there’s not a supermarket--or even a fast food restaurant--for miles.
posted by DirtyOldTown
on Mar 20, 2013 -
"Louisiana is the world's prison capital. The state imprisons more of its people, per head, than any of its U.S. counterparts. First among Americans means first in the world. Louisiana's incarceration rate is nearly triple Iran's, seven times China's and 10 times Germany's. The hidden engine behind the state's well-oiled prison machine is cold, hard cash." Louisiana Incarcerated
is a tour de force
eight-part series on the Louisiana prison system. [more inside]
posted by painquale
on May 26, 2012 -
“Now, Bill,” Jody tells me, “you got to remember something when you go to grab that frog tonight.” He greets the lady inside the squawk box and places Bryce’s order. “You’re not petting that frog,” he says. “You’re not slapping that frog. You got to…” He presses his lips together, searching for something that will illustrate his point. His eye comes to rest on an empty coffee cup in the truck’s holder. “You got to grab that frog.” As he speaks, a large right fist shoots out, seizing and crushing the Styrofoam cup so quickly and completely that it basically explodes inside the cab. The noise alone is extraordinary.
posted by monju_bosatsu
on Sep 29, 2011 -
The fire is out on the offshore oil rig Deepwater Horizon. But since the rig sank last Thursday, Coast Guard officials believe about 13,000 gallons (7,400 bbl) of crude oil per day is coming out of the exploratory hole drilled by the rig, about 41 miles offshore from Plaquemines Parish, LA
. "An early suggestion that damage would be minimal because the fire was consuming most of the fuel 'does have the potential to change,' BP official David Rainey told the New York Times
." [more inside]
posted by toodleydoodley
on Apr 26, 2010 -
are said to be a dying traditional American subculture
. Descendants of Canary Island immigrants of Louisiana
, the name Isleños was given to them to distinguish them from Spanish mainlanders, known as "peninsulares." But in Louisiana, the name evolved from a category to an identity.
For a long time they were one of those rare subcultures that found a way to maintain a living tradition as the world around them modernised by carving out a livelihood as crabbers and 'shrimpers'. Then Katrina hit
and the wetlands, which were central to the Isleños identity, essentially dissapeared. Despite the blow to their economy, they still have their songs
and annual fiestas
, evidence of a strong culture which binds their community together, and their rebuilding following Katrina
demonstrated how strong that sense of identity and culture can be. So perhaps the Isleños shouldn't be written off just yet, then. After all, as Isleño Irvan Perez says, "This is home. Where else would we go?
posted by Effigy2000
on Dec 7, 2008 -
Under the ole shade tree...
Welcome to Jena, LA -- mix high school segregation, racism, nooses, fights, ineffective school administration, attempted-murder charges, shotguns, and a town in upheaval--a "racial powder keg"
. Much more here,
including links to help.
posted by amberglow
on May 23, 2007 -
"It took the Mississippi River 6,000 years to build the Louisiana coast. It took man (and natural disasters) 75 years to destroy it. Experts agree we have 10 years to act before the problem is too big to solve." [Via First Draft.]
posted by homunculus
on Mar 5, 2007 -