Though I never properly thanked my father (or, for that matter my mom, Stephen, my friends, or even the doctors and nurses), we now met for dinner regularly, which was a vast improvement over the once-every–six months relationship we had had before. Sometimes, now, over a meal, we lock eyes and begin speaking in some sort of secret code, which could be described as an otherworldly connection, inadvertently freezing out everyone else at the table. I never realized how rude we often were until Giselle later brought it up. “I don’t think you guys are aware of it,” she confided, “but sometimes it’s hard for people around you to feel included.” In order to receive money, those eligible had to submit a notarized claim form indicating whether physical or emotional injuries were suffered. Funds were divided among three categories: patients who died, patients who survived, and non-patients. Each claim effectively reduced the payout to other claimants in the same category. 6“soul surviving”: Lindzy Louis IV, recorded June 23, 2007 for the oral history project“Surviving Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in Houston Collection” (AFC 2008/006), Archive of Folk Culture, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress, Washington, DC (Interview SR012, Accession # SKR-CJ-SR02). meaning.” He would see a page of this pseudo-music for a few seconds, and then it would disappear suddenly, replaced by another, equally nonsensical page. These hallucinations were sometimes

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