Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Standpipe: Delivering Water In Flint

Time to go, water delivered, schedule to keep.  A little chit chat, edging toward the door.  Man in his forties, fit, plus two mutts barking non-stop from crates in the dining room.  He ushers us deeper into the house, wants to show us his set up.  Desk top, lap tops, video equipment, monitors, cords, keyboards, mics, hard and soft cases.  I scan everything quickly, hardware that may or may not be functionally integrated and operational.  Check this out.  Look here.  Says he’s streaming the whole deal from right here in this room.  Has been since shit went down.  He shifts his weight back and forth.  Now he’s bouncing a little on the balls of his feet, flexing his hands.  Puttin’ it out there, man.  Coverin’ meetin’s, recordin’ interviews, uploadin’ video.  Well, I say, gotta go, more stops to make.  My partner, an exceedingly kind woman, listens intently.  The man paces, gestures.  The dogs bark.  The truck idles at the curb.  Next time you here, we do an interview, go deep into it.  My hand is on the knob.  I can read people, he says.  Got real good at it in prison.  I can read you right now.  I’m certain this is true, but I don’t consider this evidence of any extraordinary perceptual gifts.  Dogs want us to leave, I say, changing the subject.  He gestures outside, says you see this street?  Only a few inhabited houses remain.  Empty lots and blackened shells dominate.  You think they gonna run new pipe where they ain’t nobody livin’?  Accusatory tone, features contorted, but the man has a point.  Out on the porch now, headed for the truck.  With a wave we’re off.  Before we left, he gave us his card, told us to call if we thought of something to say about the crises.  When he’s not streaming justifiable rage, he D.J.’s on the side. 

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