10 Years since Hurricane/Super Storm Sandy and Other Stuff


10 years since Hurricane/Super Storm Sandy (10/29/12-10/30/12).

Time flies. It strikes me as both sad and almost trivial as to how I now think of Sandy as the storm that ruined Halloween 2012, when it was much more than just that. I don’t know if we as the American society – we as New Yorkers – have fully processed lessons from it. Apparently, the COVID-19 pandemic has helped delayed much efforts to keep rebuilding and becoming more resilient from such storms.

Otherwise, Facebook Memories reminded me of those eerie times when we had extensive subway system damage and other consequences.

See here for what I posted here on triscribe on the eve of Sandy. Here for FC’s posts on the local gas station and the return of the subway. Here for my post on the Days After Sandy. Here’s the link to my post on the One Year After Sandy. I really don’t know if any or all of the links within the posts are still valid, but you can let us know.

The dead tree edition of Sunday’s NY Daily News (October 30, 2022) reminded me of how we had half of Manhattan as an electrical dead zone during the immediate recovery from Sandy. (I’d link to an e-version of the NY Daily News piece, but it appears to be behind a paywall, and it’s not nearly as accessible as, say, the NY Times’s website.)

But, eerie recollections. I’m sure looking at my posts on Facebook and tumblr from that October 2012 period will remind me how much we had to rely on community in November 2012 to keep going.

Back then, as much as we were divided by partisanship, at least NJ’s own Chris Christie had the sense to cooperate with the Obama administration, and the Republican candidate of those days, Mitt Romney, wasn’t (and still isn’t) insane. We cancelled the NYC Marathon, but we couldn’t – and didn’t – cancel Election Day in 2012.

Past, Present, and Future?

See here for a link to the NY Times’s own look at an individual recovery from Sandy, and the myriad of questions of whether we’re prepared for the future. Considering the storms since Sandy and the worsening of climate change, I don’t think we’re close to figuring out anything. Certainly, our mass transit is still figuring this out, and the storm of September 2021 did not help at all.

See here for some illuminating posts over at Gothamist about: memories from Sandy and a photographic look at now and then. There are lots to think about regarding the past, the present, and the future. Let’s keep at making things better, somehow.

Well, More of the Present and Future:

Anyway, Halloween 2022 is on a Monday, which is weird, but it does give a whole Halloween weekend an excuse.

On Friday night, I saw a guy dressed as Cat in the Hat (how cute).

Saturday afternoon: I did see some people trying to dress as something or other, but the person dressed as the Halloween movie franchise’s Michael Myers was too freaky. He had a knife in his hand, and I hoped that it was a plastic cheap kind (it did look cheap). That was a freaky sight. Outside of Halloween, this person would have been stopped by the police. I hope… I think? (sorry, I took no photos…!).

Anyway, Election Day 2022 is coming. That’s scary in its own way. But, Vote! And, don’t vote stupidly… but perhaps it’s best that I leave it at that.

Taking a Moment to Pause and Reflect 2022

Try to remember the kind of September

When life was slow and oh, so mellow.

Try to remember the kind of September

When grass was green and grain was yellow.

“Try to Remember,” from The Fantasticks.

It feels surreal that it has been 21 years. Time passes. We say that we would never forget, but I wonder if we learned anything. If September 11, 2001, was a nightmare, we somehow came together on September 12, 2001, if my memory isn’t so hazy to recall the attempts to help each other.

But, I fear about whether we really can overcome hate and fear, as we the people of this nation are as divided as ever.

21 years ago, I was trying to figure out how to make any use of my last year in law school, and then that Tuesday happened. I didn’t imagine the entirely different landscape that we’ve had since. I never imagined that all the crises and calamities we’d be through.

This morning, I watched some of the commemoration. I still feel profoundly sad for those who never came home that day, when they were civilians – just people who might have gone to work early to go vote that morning, a beautiful, blue sky of a Tuesday, when we had our primary elections for local political offices. We’re talking about just ordinary New York metro area people who were part of what made downtown Manhattan so vibrant. They were part of that odd idea that the World Trade Center embodied – that through world trade (i.e., capitalism), we could have world peace.

Maybe my cynicism gets to me. Have we done enough for the survivors, the people who worked and lived in downtown Manhattan? What about all these terrible medical conditions that arose because of how toxic Ground Zero was? What about how we didn’t know or want to know what was in the dust that littered Manhattan into southern Brooklyn? How do we stop being a**holes to each other, because aren’t we supposed to work together to overcome all the problems? I’m asking entirely rhetorical questions, of course.

This morning, our local television stations covered the commemoration at the World Trade Center. I’ll share this September 5, 2022, post by Bill Ritter, the anchor of Eyewitness News of WABC Channel 7, as he noted:

I’ve been thinking a lot about that part of the September 11th story, as we approach the 21st anniversary of that horrible day. And I’ve been thinking about how divided so much of this country is now, and I — along with many others — am trying to figure out how that happened in relatively such a short period of time.

We can debate the foundational answer to all that — and we should — as we try to figure out how to stop the hate that infects so many people, and re-visit and re-light the sense of community that sparked the peaceful coagulation of this country 21 years ago.

For our coverage of the 9/11 memorial in the week leading up to it, I recently interviewed former New York Governor George Pataki, a lifelong Republican who has thought a lot about how we have become so divided, and how his own party has become polarized, with some of them so filled with hate.

There are, of course, many like the former governor, who favor discussion rather than rants, problem-solving dialogue instead of diatribes. But their voices are typically not the loudest.

There is also what President Joe Biden observed during his speech at the Pentagon this morning, as part of the commemoration:

It’s not enough to stand up for democracy once a year or every now and then. It’s something we have to do every single day. So this is a day not only to remember, but a day of renewal and resolve for each and every American.”

Pres. Joe Biden, September 11, 2022, per report by Zolan Kanno-Youngs and Jeffery C. Mays, NY Times.

Just a few days ago, Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom passed away, at the age of 96, as the longest-reigning monarch of the UK. Regardless at this moment of how one may feel about monarchy, our planet’s entering a transition. I think that we can learn a lot from Queen Elizabeth II about commitment to duty and service, and even believing in commitment – and maybe those are the very reasons why we have admired her, putting aside our discomfort with monarchy and love of celebrity.

For the observation of today, I liked how this report over at the NY Times reminded how, two days after September 11, 2001, Queen Elizabeth II handled her demonstration of alliance:

Two days after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, Elizabeth ordered a military band to play “The Star-Spangled Banner” during the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace, one of the most popular and visible public displays of British tradition.

“Tourists and British onlookers stood silent, grasping American flags and weeping,” The New York Times reported at the time. [….]

Last year, on the 20th anniversary of the attacks, the queen again ordered the United States’ anthem to be played as the guard changed. In a message to President Biden, Queen Elizabeth II said at the time that her thoughts and prayers — “and those of my family and the entire nation” — were with the victims, survivors, families and rescue workers affected by the attacks.

Photo I had taken some years ago, at the Brooklyn Promenade.

Last year, FC shared this over on Facebook, so I’m passing it along again: “Wake Me Up When September Ends” – Green Day (Cover by First to Eleven).

See here for last year’s post, of the 20th anniversary of a day that we cannot forget. I wish you all a peaceful and thoughtful day. Thanks again for being here. — ssw15

Happy New Year’s Eve 2020

We’re about to say goodbye and good riddance to 2020, the fire in a dumpster year. Of course, who’s to say that 2021 won’t bring on its own madness?

The year in review stuff hadn’t been much to impress me, because the year from March onward was dominated by the pandemic, racial injustice, and the presidential election. On the one hand, thank goodness Joe Biden won. On the other hand, let’s get to the inauguration and realize that there is so much hard work to do and to face. If we can commit to take better action, maybe there is still hope?

Do take a moment to reflect on those we lost this year, how we maintain and cherish the relationships we still have, and how we may still have much to hope for.

I’m re-sharing the link that I had shared back last year, December 31, 2019, on Facebook: “Start Fresh: 6 Tips For Emotional Well-Being In 2020” over at NPR. Why didn’t I follow these ideas in 2020? Well, I renew so-called resolutions for awhile now. These are still good ideas.

I took off from work today and spent much of it trying to do my last day of the year donations to all my causes. So, consider this the annual reminder that, if you can, don’t forget to do this before the year’s ends in a few hours. And, apparently, the CARES Act or whichever bill it was that had been passed is trying to encourage more donations. Donations might not be the solution, but at least we’re trying? And, anyway, consult a tax professional for the correct details on tax implications.

On a much lighter note: the year in pop culture was a mixed bag. NY metro area sports were a bust. The movies I did not see – well, so that goes. I did get to see the virtual offerings of the Asian American International Film Festival! And, Team Triscribe did enter the 72 Hour Shootout! Oh, I think that we forgot to blog about either of those items, so… maybe we should blog more in 2021…

Looking through my e-mails, I was almost impressed by this Williams Sonoma e-mail for their big warehouse sale. They’re selling a Star Wars Instant Pot/pressure cooker, which in in the same of R2D2. So cute! And, not cheap but on sale. I have no need for it, but really cute… Oh, goodness, they even have an R2D2 toaster…

Meanwhile, it’s 2021 already for some parts of the world! I still remember how 2000 was the year in which a lot of the TV channels went with a time zone to time zone celebration. There was something really amazing about that (granted, that was when the Internet wasn’t what it has become; check that out, kids). Sometimes I wish that we keep holding on to that feeling of amazement (the good kind of amazement, not the “WTF” bad kind).

I’ll likely post again later to note what I read during 2020. The pandemic ended up not being all that conducive to my reading habits, let alone my exercising habits or much else. But, here’s to hoping for all the best for 2021! Maybe? Uh… 🙂

(cross-posted at sswslitinmotion.tumblr.com)