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So today on my dinner break I took a stroll over to the Mall next to my building to see how the Apple iPhones launch was going. The stores are all closed until 6pm so that (according to Steve Jobs) people don't have to take off from work to get an iPhone. The reality (of course) is that it's so that news teams can get nice visuals of hundreds of people waiting in line — free advertising!

I guess advertising only goes so far, though, because one thing you can't do for Apple without being hassled by a giant security guy is take a picture of the (CLOSED AND BLACKED OUT) front of an Apple store:

I Am A Criminal

I was snapping pictures of the people in line and just took this one when a guard practically ran up to me and told me not to do that. I asked why, he said "because it's private property". I wish I knew the rules of what's legal in photography a little better, because after all I AM inside a mall. So the MALL might be private property, but the OUTSIDE of a store is not normally private property (anything visible from a public area is fair game, I know that much). The guy basically followed me almost to the door of the mall, and I argued with him the whole way. He asked me if I'd like to discuss it with the police. Nice huh? Way to promote a warm fuzzy feeling about your phone, Apple.

I'm thinking I will NEVER buy an iPhone now. Bite me, Apple!

Other pictures from the event.
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I still find some things hard to fathom -- and I've been mystified by them all week. I'm trying to think about this stuff in an orderly fashion but I keep getting stuck on bits, like a scratch on a record:
Read more... )
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OK, I can't even follow my own advice about stopping. It's a brand-new day and I'm back on the trail.

Whoo-hoo! This is an amazing letter.

I think this is my favorite bit: "Bienville built New Orleans where he built it for one main reason: It’s accessible. The city between the Mississippi River and Lake Pontchartrain was easy to reach in 1718.

How much easier it is to access in 2005 now that there are interstates and bridges, airports and helipads, cruise ships, barges, buses and diesel-powered trucks."
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I watch all week about the horrors in New Orleans. I troll news sites, blogs, mailing lists, anything from which I can get information. I am a news junkie this week and I believe very little has been getting by me. I've donated money and I've ranted endlessly with my friends about this whole situation. So why does this just slay me?

I can watch and read no more. My imagination is too vivid. Enough for now.
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So apparently the fire marshall at the Astrodome has declared it full. Sorry for the ridiculously long bus ride, but there's no room at the inn. Good luck now!

And Michael Brown has been added to my ever-increasing list of villains today, under a special category of "where the fuck have you been all week, pal?"

Unspeakable. Lying, stupid, clueless, thoughtless, and uncaring. That's who *I* want in charge of FEMA, yep! How come if everyone is focusing on saving lives so many lives are still being lost?!

No, it's much more important that we stop the property loss! Get those looters! How DARE they steal from supermarkets? Or steal clothing? FOR SHAME! Shoot 'em! Shoot 'em all! Quick!


Sep. 1st, 2005 02:32 pm
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Everything about this article sends my blood pressure into the stratosphere!

I was pissed off yesterday when Bush did a "flyover" in Air Force One, and we got to see pictures of W. with his widdle face pressed against the window. Why didn't he land? Why hasn't he been anywhere near there yet? Why is Condoleeza Rice off in NY watching Broadway shows and buying shoes? WHY AM I SURPRISED BY ANY OF THIS?!

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"To begin clean up, collect tools and cleaning equipment. Gather items such as buckets, rubber gloves and boots, eye goggles to protect eyes from splashes, paper towels, scrub brushes, rags, sponges, bleach, cleaners, trash bags, spray bottles, and fans for drying. "

.... pick through the bodies of your loved ones, pets, and the splintered remains of your home to find these things ....

I think I might be a little burnt-out...
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Three days of watching reports from New Orleans and Gulfport, and I'm starting to feel completely overwhelmed with the tragedy. I keep hearing about how this is our tsunami, but we're not a third world country! This didn't come upon us suddenly -- there was plenty of warning! Why did so many have to die?!

I heard a report on NPR about how New Orleans has always had a fatalistic side to it, knowing that it was only a matter of time before they'd end up underwater. And I had certainly heard that often enough before this whole storm. So if that was the case, why didn't they have a better evacuation plan in place? One that would have enough places for people to go, and would have ways for the housebound or infirm to actually GET to these places?

I tried to find a few local government websites on Gulfport and they're just...gone. Much like some sites were gone after 9/11. The local New Orleans paper is not producing actual printed copies, just online editions. They're moving all the Superdome people to the Astrodome (which makes for an interesting story to tell, but not something I'd want to be able to claim!) in Houston. It's all so sad.

Can someone please tell me why people leave their animals behind when they evacuate?!

And hey, thank god the president cut short his vacation by two whole days to take care of this. Those people should feel better already.
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Another improvement (this one less immediate, and less personal): I will no longer buy bottled water. I've been fretting about the landfills enough as it is, lately, and I can at least let this tiny fraction of my guilt go. If my town's water isn't good enough to drink I will go back to filtered water such as Brita or Pur.

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