Under The Radar - Buffalo Blackout


 By Francis White

When I heard about the Buffalo blackout coming up this week that was supposed to happen today, I hurried and gave Utility Pimpin (one of the poverty pimps) a call. I knew he had something to do with this.

After talking to a secretary and being on hold for a second while listening to Snap’s “I got the power” Utility Pimpin gets on the phone. “What up Frank? You know I got the power baby, and I be trippin! How can a playa help you?” he quipped. I said “what’s this business about 900 something power customers in Buffalo being told they’ll be left in the dark on Thursday for basically a whole day? It’s been hot as hell lately, and Thursday is supposed to one of the hottest days of the year. I can understand the fact that the school needs to connect a new building to the power grid, but the way you’re going about this whole thing is from a top down approach. And, you sure as heck didn’t give any far enough advanced warnings or make any real relief provisions for these people while this work is being done. What’s wrong with you man, are you high, what have you been smoking?”

He said “Frankie, calm down baby. You know I’ve been getting high off of pimping utility power for years. These tricks, I mean customers will be fine. I moved the day back to Friday. There will only be a little over 900 people affected; we’re not talking about the whole city. We’re talking about the Allentown, Kleinhans Neighborhoods, and maybe a little bit of the lower west side, lol. They should be fine. The “G-Machine” (gentrification machine) is running through that mutha baby, so most of them muthas over there should have some type of disposable income, some family in the burbs or somewhere else to go stay with, or can find some other way to make it through the heat.”

“That’s not true, everybody over there doesn’t have money like that, you can’t just interrupt people’s lives, imperiling their ability to survive, and behave like it’s nothing. And, don’t play games with me, there will be 900 something “rate payers” affected, a rate payer could be one household or one business in that area. One household could be 6 people, while one business could be dozens. There are still plenty of low income people living in the potentially impacted area that we’re talking about. They don’t have many, if any resources at all. What are they supposed to do?” I replied.

“Frankie baby, listen I like you, but don’t be calling me with all this sentimental stuff. I’m out here pimpin trying to make this utility money, that’s my bottom line baby! For those poor muthas we got a couple of community centers they can go chill out at while this thing is going down. Maybe after all this is over they’ll finally wake up to the fact that they should just move their broke butts out of the neighborhood and go somewhere else. I got the power baby, and I be trippin” he said.

“You are a piece of work, but this is what I’ve come to expect out of you. That’s why I will continue to advocate for more neighborhood control of our energy” I said. “Is that all? I got to go baby, I’m pimpin all over the world these days” he said. “No I’m done right now” I told him. “Cool, take care of yourself, it’s gonna be a hot one out there tomorrow” he said, and then hung up the phone.