A TV Free pod playing this afternoon featured a couple driving around the desert in a human skull-shaped vehicle. "It’s a pain in the ass to build," said one of the duo, a woman named Renee, "but rad to drive in."
In other video pod, about a dozen celebrants asked themselves, "what’s going to happen at the end of the oil economy?" Their visionary answer to the Burning Man question (this year’s theme is green): they built "Crude Awakening," a 90-foot tall oil derrick. Cameras roll as giant cranes painstakingly erect the structure in high winds. The project is a collaborative, volunteer effort that required 23,000 hours of total labor.
At the moment, Current is also remembering the New Orleans tragedy through a series of pods shot by Doug Kiesling, a "weather paparazzi" who travels the U.S. in search of wild weather footoage. He flew to New Orleans on behalf of The Weather Channel and his "Escape from New Orleans" pod is heartstopping.
I can’t tell you exactly when the Katrina "mega-pod" (a collection of six or so pods) is actually set to air again. (I watched it last night.) But the pods can be viewed online here.
Unfortunately, America’s worst natural disaster has receded from the American consciousness. Almost 800,000 people were displaced, many permanently driven from their homes and livelihoods. Kiesling’s footage jumped me back in time to that terrible weekend as I watched the tragedy unfold in slow motion on Fox News and CNN.
This Saturday and Sunday at 8p.m ET., CNN airs Children of the Storm. Spike Lee and CNN special correspondent Soledad O’Brien gave 11 New Orleans students cameras and asked them to documents their lives in the wake of Katrina. CNN touches base with four of them.
On a personal note: to some degree, some of the same conditions that led to the New Orleans tragedy are taking shape right here in Marin County. (It’s pretty shocking. On a quiet news weekend, I might just out the story on this blog.)
I hope everyone watches Katrina cable coverage and takes to heart a very, very serious lesson. New Orleans can happen to you. We are all New Orleans.
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