Wind-swept memories of Hurricane Katrina

Reuben-2012

REUBEN MEES

Ten years ago today, I woke up at 6 a.m. and I knew it was going to be a bad day.    In fact, everyone in a 200-mile radius of me was also preparing for a really bad day. But just how bad it was going to get, few could imagine.

The weathercaster on the television was already announcing that Hurricane Katrina had made landfall in southeastern Louisiana as a Category 3 hurricane. It must have weakened slightly overnight as the last I had heard before leaving my work at the Hattiesburg, Miss., American the night before was that it was still a massive Category 4 storm.

Regardless, it was one of the most destructive natural disasters this country had ever endured.

Fortunately, the electric was still working at my house north of Hattiesburg, but that wouldn’t last through my morning shower.

By the time Examiner subscribers read this piece over their morning coffee today, the winds would already have been starting to howl 100 miles inland in the village where I lived with my significant other at the time, Jennifer. 

It was certainly a difficult day as we lost one service after another — electricity and television followed by water service and eventually, both land and cellular telephone communication came to a halt.

The massive winds of the storm tore a hole in the roof of our house that allowed rain to pour into the eastern half of the home and we spent most of the day moving our furniture toward the center of the house as the waterfalls in the bedrooms grew in size.

  • Written by REUBEN MEES

Early symptoms of election fever setting in

Reuben-2012

REUBEN MEES

From a local special election that has been questioned for its cost to taxpayers, the introduction of a full slate of candidates for local offices to the first debate of the 2016 presidential election cycle, this week has been a flurry of election-related activity that has reawakened the political junkie in me from a three-year slumber.

Special election

At the local level, probably the most whispered about issue this week was the approximately $35,000 spent to put on Tuesday’s special election to pass a 0.25-mill levy for the Logan County Historical Society.

With only 1,053 voters, or a measly 3.6 percent of Logan County’s total registered voters, the election cost more than $33 per voter to put on. 

The August election was called because paperwork filed by the historical society to place the levy on the May ballot was submitted to the Logan County Commissioners’ Office in a timely fashion, but did not make it from that office to the Logan County Board of Elections in time to meet the February deadline.

  • Written by REUBEN MEES

Christmas memories and breakfast casserole

nate smith

It’s been three years ago this month since my grandmother passed away and, though I miss her often, the feeling is never as intense as it is this time of year.

  • Written by NATE SMITH

Candid, open discussion yields positive agreement

nate blog

Federal politicians inside the Washington, D.C., bubble sure could stand to learn a lot from a group of local elected officials committed to doing right by their constituents.

Punch and iced sugar cookies notwithstanding, the Nov. 27 joint meeting between Quincy and DeGraff village councils was fierce and, at times, a bit confrontational as both groups sought to get their way in an ongoing difference of opinion over how best to pay the incoming operator at the wastewater treatment plant.

  • Written by NATE SMITH

Too tired to tread water anymore

blog_reuben

It’s been four years since Barack Obama promised America “hope and change” and his ultimate election seemed, at least to me, like a potential positive sign for America.

As I wrote at the time, I was swept out to sea by a beautiful wave that seemed to be washing magically up on our golden shores.

But once the waters calmed, I found myself stranded out in the middle of nowhere just trying to keep my head from sinking beneath the surface.

As I have treaded that water, our national debt has climbed at a preposterous rate; our right to freedom of intrusion by the government and its spies has only grown darker; we are being forced to buy into an insurance scheme because politicians lack any ability to think of creative ways to provide health care to Americans; and despite promising to stop enforcing federal controlled substance laws in states with medical marijuana laws, DEA crackdowns are more prevalent than ever.

  • Written by REUBEN MEES