Monday, November 17, 2008


Dionne Sincire
Triangle Complex Fire
Frailty and volatility
Plans disheveled
Family exiled to Esperanza***
The best of human nature is not fireproof...

I'm still sorting through Saturday's experience. Since everything was so chaotic and incongruent, that is how I have been working through my thoughts these past few days. My recollections are so disjointed. The last statement of this poem is not meant to be the defining moment of my ordeal. It just sums up some of the perplexity of human nature that I witnessed--that internal struggle which prompts us to do evil instead of good.

A woman, clearly distraught over not being able to return to her home stood on the street corner and berated one of the evacuation officials. Why would you mistreat the very people who are here (probably on a voluntary basis) to save your life? Though her actions seem absurd from a rational perspective, the prospect of losing everything in a matter of minutes is anything but rational.

Moments after evacuation shelters were established, con artists arrived pretending to be insurance agents trying to scam victims of what remained of their life savings.

A few looters were caught scavenging through evacuated neighborhoods.

Some hotels in our area raised room rates by 30% hours after mandatory evacuations were issued.

After searching for hotel rates online, I Googled "Triangle Complex Fires, news", to get updates on the fire and evacuations, and clicked on the first "news" link that came up. The link navigated me to a porn site.

***Esperanza is a reference to Esperanza High School, which was established as one of the evacuation centers that night. We didn't actually go to an evacuation center. In an effort to hold on to some normalcy for the girls, we elected to stay with family instead. The use of the word here is meant to be ironic. Inspite of the interplay of man's propensity for evil in times of devastation, there is still hope. Maybe I'll write more on that later.


Lisa P said...

Sure, we were made in God's image, but our human nature is alive and well. And what astounds me is that it's not just the worst of society that is pulled towards evil. I, left to my own will, am drawn to selfishness, deceit, and all the same vices that you describe. Thanks for sharing.

Alli said...

I am glad you and your family are safe and made it through the ordeal.

It makes me so angry that people jump at the chance to take advantage of people who are already feeling beaten down, vulnerable, and helpless. Although this is to a lesser degree, your post reminds me of the gangs who bullied and robbed people at the superdome after Katrina. I wish tragedies brought out the best in everyone, but unfortunately, evil rears its ugly head at every opportunity.

The Unlikely Pastor's Wife said...


frustating. very frustrating.

Yet...even in the midst of those capitilzing on the tragedy of others...there are the many more volunteers who give their time to help, love and care for those in need.


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