As I watched Drew Brees and Sean Payton celebrating the Saints victory over Peyton Manning's Indianapolis Colts, it brought back many memories of the early days -- the beginning of the Saints.
As a lifetime 49er fan, I was spending my days employed by the City of San Francisco at Log Cabin Ranch, a juvenile detention facility for felony offenders located on a former 634 acre ranch in the town of La Honda, made famous by the antics of Ken Kesey and his Merry Pranksters.
During the offseason, several Niners would put in time as counselors. One was Johnny Fuller, a tough defensive back and kick returner from Lamar, Texas. John and I became good friends and when he was traded to the Saints, he asked me to drive his wife's station wagon from California to New Orleans. In exchange, I had the opportunity to visit the team at their training camp south of New Orleans and to attend the first ever game played at the Superdome on August 9 1975, an exhibition game against Bum Phillips, Earl Campbell and the Houston Oilers (now the Tennessee Titans).
It was the experience of a lifetime and the French Quarter will always have a special place in my heart. That, however, brings us to this century. There was a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico in August of 2005. It caused huge damage in Mississippi but very MODEST damage in New Orleans.
What catastrophically damaged New Orleans was flooding caused by the failure of the federal levee system - an engineering failure second in scope only to Chernobyl.
While people were drowning and stranded roofs for days, the federal government with the help of the US news media went overtime not helping, but covering its tracks.
The whole sordid story - and why every part of America should know the real story...because there are federal levees EVERYWHERE.
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