The Marks Post: Barry marooned my birthday
(Editor’s Note: Gazette Editor Tony Marks is also
Sports Editor for The Oakdale Journal. This is an edited reprint of a column that originally ran in the Thursday, July 18, edition of that Allen Parish newspaper.)
The Dixie Youth Super 10 and Major Regional Tournaments were supposed to get underway last week, but Hurricane Barry pushed them back until this past Thursday. But, those tournaments were not the only things that got messed up by Barry.
My birthday was last Sunday, and I planned on taking my mom and sister, Allison, to the New Orleans Riverwalk since we could not go for Mother’s Day. Well, that plan went out the window as soon as I saw all the flooding in New Orleans.
I tossed different backup ideas in my head and came up with the idea of leaving work early Friday to have lunch with mom and my sister in Baton Rouge then returning home to Ville Platte later that day.
I finished up everything at noon Friday and left for Baton Rouge but didn’t make it because I turned around in Krotz Springs. I was listening to the governor’s press conference and decided I did not want to get stuck on the road.
On the way back, I stopped at the Wal-Mart in Opelousas to buy a few necessities like tuna fish, potted meat, and corned beef. They were all out of Vienna sausages, but I did snag a can of Spam.
Friday night came, but no Barry.
I woke up Saturday morning and wanted to go ride around town to take a few pre-hurricane pictures, then I went home and stayed glued to hurricane coverage. Whenever I would get tired of watching TV, I would go ride around again. The last time I went ride around was when I went to Champagne’s to buy some meat to cook that night, but they were closing up shop.
Later on that day, I looked around in my freezer and found some frozen hamburger patties and frozen sausage. I thawed all that out and made me a gravy.
With 6 p.m. approaching, I turned on my 97.3 The Dawg App for some Classic Country Saturday Night, turned the TV on the Astros game against the Rangers, and hunkered down for the hurricane with my rice and gravy.
Cabin fever started to creep in and caused me to make a few Barry jokes on social media like “This storm was supposed to hit us like Barry Sanders, but it’s looking more like Barry Goldberg. #JTP,” and “Barry got pulled over by (State Trooper) Willie Williams.”
Saturday night came, and still no Barry.
That was at least until the middle of the night when it finally started raining hard.
Sunday morning came, and it was my birthday. I woke up and went to 10 a.m. Mass at Sacred Heart and was able to make it in the rain to B&S to get me a BBQ Boston Butt plate lunch.
After eating all that, I fell asleep during the Cubs game. When I woke up, they were losing 3-1 to the Pirates. But, I watched them come back to complete the sweep and improve to 3-0 after the All-Star break.
Sunday night came, and, yea, you guessed it. No Barry.
Well, again, that was until the middle of the night when it started raining proverbial cats and dogs.
I woke up Monday morning and felt like my house was on an island because my street was flooded. I live on E. Washington St. in Ville Platte just off of Tate Cove Rd. It is the highest part of town, so it has to rain a lot to flood that much.
I could not make it to work, so I just watched the rain continue to fall and drivers try to pass down my street. Some would pass back-and-forth just to be nosey.
At one point during the morning, I saw my neighbors Paul Franks and the Arnaud Brothers discussing the situation. The Arnauds looked like something out of Exodus because they reminded me of Moses and Aaron. Mitch had a body-sized rain suit on and was carrying a staff with his rubber boots.
Later on in the morning, I went stand on my front porch to check on the cats outside. Paul came meet me again, and, before long, so did the Arnauds. After that excitement, I went walk about to take pictures of the flooding around my house. I walked to the back to LaSalle Street and stood in the water that was well up my leg. I am pretty sure I never saw that much water around my house.
Lunch time came around, and I ate some left over rice and gravy from Saturday night.
The rain finally stopped, so I decided to finally make my way to the office after watching an episode of Bewitched and back-to-back episodes of The Mary Tyler Moore Show. I do not care what anybody says, the new Darren is not as good as the old Darren. But, I digress.
Anyway, while I was taking the long way to the office because the streets were still flooded, I saw a couple of police cars down LaSalle. So, I doubled back and parked in the Shell parking lot. I walked down to the area and saw KATC-Channel 3 coming around the corner. I talked to them a while and probably made the evening news that night. I walked some more and saw Evangeline Parish Police Jury President Ryan Williams, who is my juror, with some other guys looking at the flood. One of the guys was Moses, I mean Mitch. He took off his rain suit by then but still had his staff in hand.
I finally made it to the office and was able to type this column.
The point of all this, if there is one, is even though plans change, a random weekend with a hurricane can make for a great birthday. Barry may have messed up my birthday plans, but I still went to Mass, had some BBQ, and watched the Cubs get a win.