Tuesday, October 30, 2012

That 2010 chip is still on your shoulder?

Photo credit:
Anthony De Rosa
New York City (and several other East Coast cities and towns) suffered one of its worst natural disasters yesterday when Hurricane Sandy barreled ashore. The "frankenstorm" killed a number of people, flooded subways, knocked out the power in Lower Manhattan, caused neighborhood destroying fires in Queens, and created a toxic spill of a designated Superfund site in Brooklyn. Well-known boardwalks were destroyed in Atlantic City and Rockaway. Countless building in multiple communities were flooded. Tunnels in and out of Manhattan were inundated and obstructed by floating cars.

Many of us here in Nashville watched from afar, expressed concerns and sympathies for New Yorkers and other east coasters. A few here filed on to social media and used the occasion of the spotlight turned on the Big Apple to vent their spleens about what little media attention Nashville got in 2010. As if Nashville's flood did not have to contend with the largest oil spill ever caused by BP off the Gulf Coast in 2010 as their platform hemorrhaged crude for days.

Nonetheless, some here chose to make the catastrophe in the northeast all about us while Gotham fell into cold darkness.

New York City is an international city. People from every corner of the globe live and visit there. If you travel the world over, you'll meet all kinds of people who know what New York City is but who may be more challenged to say what Nashville is. That's no slight against us. It's a simple reality. When one of the world's major cities is flooded it is paramount news. When a large city in Middle Tennessee is flooded it is big enough to warrant national attention, but to compare it to the attention New York City should get is unrealistic, whiny, and foolish.

And given that a big-city broadcasting corporation has given Nashville's music industry a gratuitous spotlight via a primetime weeknight soap opera, the resentment over someone else's tragedy makes us look like ingrates.


  1. Add Al Gore to the list of those who can't discuss Sandy without invoking Nashville flooding.

  2. I have not read Al Gore on Sandy, but I don't have a problem with Nashvillians/Tennesseans honestly invoking memories of our flood(s) to express compassion for NYC. The crap I object to is using NYC to express narcissism, anger, insecurity, etc. about put-upon, neglected little Nashville.