2013-02-08 / Columnists

Boyleing Points

Commentary By Kevin Boyle
By Kevin Boyle

Can I be serious for a second? One of the more overlooked things about the aftermath of Sandy has to be Post Traumatic Stress. Consider the term. Post means after (we are in the post Sandy era) Trauma (look it up: one of its definitions is “emotional upset”) -- getting frightened by flood or fire is normal and so is the emotional upset that comes with it. For that matter, even if you didn’t witness fire and flood but came to find your home and possessions destroyed it’d be understandable to be severely upset. Stress? Well, stress – and distress – can be so severe that you can suffer from depression. Stress can cloud your thinking and cause physical ailments. Now, Boyleng Points isn’t where you go for mental health advice – in fact, many people ask how I type while wearing a straight jacket-- but here’s my simple two cents: if you’re not right, you’re not alone. If you know someone who’s not right, tell ‘em it’s ok. And then seek help for yourself or others. You can google Project Hope or Fema and mental health, for starters.

If you’re not suffering psychologically you might suffer some whiplash now as I shift from sensible to simpleminded. Have you driven on Shore Front Parkway lately? It’s weird and scary but kinda cool in a post-apocalyptic Mad Max end of the world kinda way. The remains of the boardwalk are buried and mounds of sand block ocean views. Most of the traffic lights don’t work and sand and dust blows like crazy. There’s very little traffic and with no boardwalk you don’t see people walking or jogging. Sometimes it’s like driving on the Bonneville salt flats. And if you’re heading west when you get to Beach 109 you want to keep going right onto the beach. At night they still have some of those klieg lights or whatever they’re called so utter darkness is interrupted every now and then. Night or day it’s a trip and very worthwhile for your inner juvenile. Weird thing about this super storm stuff. So much bad stuff but every now and then you gotta marvel.

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Yes, yes, yes. And those of

Yes, yes, yes. And those of us living on the stretch of Shore Front Parkway you describe are looking at this day and night. It's our world. Thanks for your apt description. PTSD? I come from a military family, and I can say that--from my own view--it is not an exaggeration to use that term. Thanks for your op/ed; I was here for Sandy and the entire aftermath (never left), and I think you're right on-beam.


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