Every year my dad, my little brother, and I take a motorcycle trip somewhere down South. In 2010, we decided to trailer the bikes from Dallas to Louisiana and ride the coastal inlets and bayous of the Gulf of Mexico along to Grand Isle. As coincidence would have it, there was a little debacle that occurred just prior to our leaving, BP broke an oil pipeline. We debated canceling the trip, but ultimately decided to continue on and we ended up seeing some amazing things.
All along the inland waterways were thousands of shrimping boats docked on account of the fact that fishing was forbidden. People were everywhere and every beach was closed. You could tell that the Louisiana natives were upset by the circumstances and there was a palpable feeling of anger. It was hot, fresh seafood was in short supply, and military personal had taken over the usual vacation rentals in order to clean up the mess.
One of the images I snapped that I felt captured the sentiment best was a plywood sign reading “Beach Closed.” Just below, in small letters, written in permanent marker were the words “You suck BP. Obama too.” I have since wondered if President Obama ever saw that sign. He visited Grand Isle just a handful of days after we road our bikes through. Even the local snow cone shack took up the fight with their two new flavors, “Tar Ball” and “Oil Spill.”