What’s life like after The Flood?

In Corporate Torsos Need Not Apply, The Flood came and went 20 years ago. I started thinking about this in the ’90s. So it’s been a minute.

I think we also had climate panic back then, but I can’t remember if we protested by throwing around fake blood. My initial inspiration was from the Tool song Ænima, a 1996 ditty about a tidal wave sweeping away Los Angeles. Check out the video if you want to see some creepy stop-motion animation that makes you feel scared for no real reason.

One of the first post-flood adaptations in the book is hospital room airlocks and pressurized waterproof elevators. The elevator idea came from one of my dad’s stories. He grew up in the projects in Newark. There was a major flood. His neighbor took the elevator to the basement to try and save his car. When the elevator got to the bottom, it filled with water, the doors shorted out, and the neighbor was trapped.

When I called around to fact-check this story for the blog, I had it all wrong. This drowning elevator death happened outside the projects (but before they were blown up), at the not-a-project Prince Street high-rise in Elizabeth, NJ in 1964.

And that’s why fiction is so relaxing. You don’t have to get your facts right.

Just kidding. People fact-check you in their spare time like it’s their job and then write you angry letters. I can’t wait. Really.

If I can get my book into the hands of an enraged waterproof elevator engineer, you bet I’ll be more than thrilled.


Photo captions & credits

“I’m advising commuters not to use the street elevator at Pentagon Metro this morning.” Nick Scalera / Twitter image via DCist, 8 July 2019

Today’s Rainfall Broke a 148-year Record, DCist, 8 July 2019

Flooding submerged cars in the Waverly Hills neighborhood of Arlington. Tyrone Turner / WAMU image via DCist, 8 July 2019

Students take part in a global protest about climate change in Cape Town, South Africa. Thousands of Students Strike Worldwide in Climate Change Action, Reuters image via TeleSur, 15 March 2019

“‘We are Unstoppable, Another World is Possible!’: Hundreds Storm Police Lines to Shut Down Massive Coal Mine in Germany.” David Young / Getty image via Common Dreams, 22 June 2019

Climate activists Extinction Rebellion spill fake blood on the Trocadero in Paris, AFP image via France24, 12 May 2019

“We are unstoppable, another world is possible.” Ende Gelände / Twitter image via Common Dreams, 22 June 2019

“How can we cut 100.000.000 Tons of CO2 emissions in Europe?” Joanie Lemercier / Twitter image via Common Dreams, 22 June 2019

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