Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Monday, November 5, 2012

More On The Rockaways

Third World New York - out in the Rockaways:

Breezy Point could have been mistaken for a Soweto shanty town Sunday as residents picked through the ruins of their homes and used blankets to ward off the cold.

Kathleen Beissel had collected some donated items to tide her over after the storm only to discover that she really had no place to put them. Her home in the Queens community was severely damaged.

“We need a place to live,” said Beissel, a 40-year-old teacher who has been staying with her husband and daughters at her brother’s place on Long Island. “We’re trying to keep the family together.”

Linens, towels, dishes and furniture would be great, she said. “A bed would be nice,” she joke.

But a new roof over her head is what Beissel really wants.

Over at the hulking Hammel Houses in Far Rockaway, flashlights flickered like fireflies in the darkened hallways. And Carmen Rosario was terrified.

“It’s scary when it is this dark,” said Rosario, 30, who lives there with her two sons, ages 11 and 13. “I have to keep my boys safe in this darkness. Everything feels like a horror movie.”

Rosario grabbed her flashlight and braved the darkness because she was hungry and cold — and because she’d gotten word that a group of marathon runners whose race had been cancelled had brought by food and clothing.

“We got some food,” Rosario said. “The first thing I need is to make sure I have food for the kids. After we eat, the three of us bundle together to stay warm in the dark apartment. It’s all we can do. We have nothing else right now.” Beissel and Rosario may live on opposite ends of the Rockaways, but like countless other New Yorkers whose lives were turned upside down by the storm — they need it all. Batteries and blankets, clean clothes and comfort food, medicine and mattresses, the list is endless.

Rosario’s neighbor, 64-year-old Elizabeth Richardson, wants pumps. Big pumps. Big enough to pump all the water out of their apartments. “I don’t know what (Mayor) Bloomberg is thinking,” she said. “They are using tiny pumps, the size of a sandbag.” Next on Richardson’s list? Hot water. “Let me tell you, those are quick cold showers. You gotta do what you gotta do,” Richardson said. “We are eating battlefield meals and we are thankful for that.”

 Nathan Darby, 57, said he wants a plug. “My apartment is leaking,” he said. “It won’t stop. Our apartment is cold. We cover up with blanket after blanket. I have asthma. I have to walk seven floors. We can’t wait till all of this is over.”

Melody Mobley, 47, said she needs an extra set of eyes. She’s trapped in an apartment with her four kids and a grandchild. “I use candles and the stove to stay warm,” she said. “I try to keep an eye on the gas and candles and just pray that we don’t catch a fire. But when you are cold, you try whatever to keep warm.” 

 Two navy vehicles with 29 personnel showed up to lend a hand to dig people out and "dewater" their homes.

But it's not enough.

Mayor Bloomberg is spending millions of dollars today and tomorrow on political ads with his SuperPAC.

He should have canceled those ad buys and used that money for recovery.

Yes, it's his money and he can do what he wants with it.

But the next time you hear what a great "philanthropist" Bloomberg is, remember what he did with his "philanthropy" money this week as people in storm-ravaged areas suffered.


  1. Bloomberg is a disgrace. The people of Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and the Bronx should heckle, humiliate and hound the scandalous emperor at every public opportunity.
    He has a thin skin and he can be made into the laughingstock that truly is. The "Bottom Line" is Bloomberg should be fired!.. Fired because he is incompetent.

  2. I agree with everything you say. Everything.