The Wrath of Sandy Answered

Saint Joseph's Mens Lacrosse Members

About two weeks ago, Hurricane Sandy caused unbelievable destruction to the states of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. The storm caused damage people would not think possible for these areas. I, as well as many students who attend Saint Joseph’s University, am from this area which was devestated by the affects of the hurricane. I have never heard or seen of the wreckaged which occurred in New York City. I for one never would have believed subways would be shut down, floods would rage through the streets, or parts of buildings would be ripped away. However, nothing compares to the horrible devestation left along the New Jersey shore line. Many friends and students have summer houses within this area, where they have (for 3 months out of the year) grown up since they were young. A place where they had many great memories and valuables. Hurricane Sandy almost effortlessly wiped out this entire are, with the exception of a few modern house, which were able to withhold the hurricane because of its new design.

When all finally settled, a group of students on the Men’s Lacrosse Team were determined to help the cause. A group of 12 players and 1 parent headed down to the town of Manahowkin on November 10th to aide those who were affected by the hurricane. The 12 men did not know what to expect going in, but felt the urge to assist those who (like a lot of themselves) were affected by the disasters. It was a small step toward helping rebuild a community, vacation house, and most importantly new memories. The experience turned to be a life changing experience none would ever forget. From the first house to the last, the men formed relationships with people overly appreciated of their efforts to help strangers take the first steps toward normalicy. By going down to the shore, we did not plan on bringing back the loss memories or valuables.  We planned on helping people begin to forge new ones and offer support to people who had been through a traumatic experience.

The event was an eyeopening experience for all 12 involved. We learned everyone had a different story from an elder couple who were persistent on attempting to save every little piece possible to a gentleman who asked us to literally gut his entire house by breaking down his walls. There were also people who just asked for simple help through cutting up some rugs or carrying out dressers. No matter what we did or who we did it for the results were still the same. We impacted the lives of everyone we helped that Saturday because we were able to represent a symbol of hope to people who were down to nothing. They were able to see people outside of their community care and wanted to be a part of their initial steps back to their normal lives. We all learned a great deal from the experience as well. We learned no matter how hard we think things are some times, there is always someone out there who needs help more than ourselves. The quote of the day when we asked people if they needed free labor instantly became, “No it’s okay, go help somebody else who needs the help more than I do.” Wow. This was coming from people who NEEDED the help, but still were thinking about others.

The only way to fix things is to forget about the past and begin to move toward the future. I believe we helped a handful of people do that, even if it was only for a day.

The What Was I Thinking Affect….

As everyone grows up, we tend to look back at times throughout our lives and laugh, think “What was I thinking?”, than move on. It was those silly actions we made to impress someone, those jokes we told nobody laughed at, or those horribly, bad hair days we had. The best example of this person would be Mitch Kramer, from Dazed and Confused, for some reason I do not know why, but that kid always made me cringe throughout the entire movie. However, the best part about these experiences are they are something of the past, that stick mostly only in our own memories. They are things we can think of to make ourselves laugh and shake our heads.

Mitch Kramer

When I was growing up, I never wanted to make any of my geeky moments public to the world. However, nowadays social media has allowed this opportunity and for whatever the reason may be people are taking the bate. We are everybody we “know” into our worlds and keeping nothing for ourselves. Much like the affect Mitch Kramer has on me, so do something I see on social media sties like Facebook and Twitter. People willingly uploading inappropriate pictures and unimportant statues because the world we live in makes us feel like outsiders to the norms.

However, I do understand there is a distinction in taking these ideas as light hearted and poking fun at the idea. On the other hand, there are people who do take the idea of social media to a whole new level where people relay announcements of their day-to-day on Facebook (ex. Posting up in my bed tonight, trying to shake my sickness.). How this is relevant to anything needed out there in the world boggles my mind. Another pet-peeve is when people are updating their Twitter and Facebook accounts while watching different events such as: sports, electoral debates, oscars, etc.

The issue I have is everybody is given the ability to communicate with one another for a specific reason and I believed we have taken that gift, flipped it on its head, and ran in the other direction. Next time you want to tell Kanye West how disappointed you are for interrupting your gurl t-swift during her expectance speech, please refrain and understand either I’m watching also or will read one of the hundreds of articles being typed at the moment from credible sources and people who know how to type articulately.