Somebody Had to Do It
Reporter: Raul, thank you for taking the time today to speak with me.
Raul: I have nothing but time these days.
Reporter: As you know, we are trying to get a handle on why you and 2,999 others would kill yourselves during Hurricane Maria and its aftermath? Was this really just about embarrassing President Trump and FEMA?
Raul: You have to recognize that there is a long history of people of color offing themselves during natural disasters to make a Republican president look bad. I mean, our brothers and sisters in New Orleans during Katrina set a pretty high bar for sacrifice, and we had just been waiting for our own chance.
Reporter: To be perfectly clear, your deaths were avoidable?
Raul: Well sure, it would have been hard times. I mean, folks do tend to depend on their medicine. Dialysis is usually a good thing. And maybe clear water and food would have been an issue, and the old folks and babies might have struggled with unrelenting heat. Those depending on oxygen tanks might have been a bit bothered when their supplies ran out. As I think about, I suspect mold and infections would eventually have caused some issues. But really, it was all about embarrassing Trump. I mean, most of the 3,000 of us really did not try too hard to stay alive. When we saw that only 16 or 18 people died as a direct result of the storm, we took it as a challenge.
Reporter: Was it worth it?
Raul: Well somebody has to show how uncaring the president is when it comes to people of color. He seems to be taking some criticism for his handling of the Maria recovery, so I guess we succeeded.
Reporter: And what will you do if Trump is impeached or takes a stroke?
Raul: Well, I haven’t really thought that through. I am looking at the opportunities in the haunting division. There are a lot of Trump properties out there that could use a good Puerto Rican spook. Or maybe his family. I mean, wouldn’t it be interesting if Ivanka spoke Spanish in a man’s voice each time she orgasmed? “Dios mío . . . dios mío . . . DÍOS MIO! Necessito un cigarillo.”
Reporter: Well, thank you Raul. I appreciate you taking the time today, and I’ll let you get back to decomposing.
Chris Espenshade has been a professional archaeologist for 33 years. Beginning in 2017, Chris branched into creative writing. He has had works accepted for publication by Fewer Than 500, The Cabinet of Heed, Thrice Fiction, 81 Words, Agora Journal, Brilliant Flash Fiction, The Write Launch, The Paragon Journal, National Pasquinade, The RavensPerch, The Dead Mule School of Southern Literature (four times), The Raven Chronicles’ Journal (twice), Life in the Finger Lakes on-line (three times), and Georgia Outdoor News. He lives with his wife, Linda, in Wellsboro, Pennsylvania.