The GaTech Chemical Explosion OR Just Another Day at the Trade School

It’s never a dull day down here at the Trade School (GaTech, for those that don’t live in GA). Students everywhere, traffic everywhere. Working on a college campus can be exciting at times. Take today for example….

Over the summer, it became pretty passé as someone over at Paper Sciences was always spilling something. Kinda like the boy who cried WOLF, but this was more like “Oops, sorry sir, but I burned a hole in the floor.” So today began like any other.

But then a chemical spill and resulting explosion on campus this time brought the haz-mat guys, the news geeks, the helicopters. It turned into a circus pretty fast. WXIA gets closest to what happened:

The spill was reported inside the Environmental Science and Technology Building on Ferst Drive, which was evacuated. One minor injury was reported.

[…] A hazardous materials team suited up to make a safe entry into the second floor lab, where the spill originated.

Fire officials said they believe three chemicals in all spilled inside the building, sparking the small blast.

I was returning to campus after having lunch with a friend when we saw large swarms of students streaming down the streets like ants abandoning ship. After VT, GaTech rolled out an emergency notification system for students/faculty/staff. Today it worked. Like beepers going off at a presidential press conference, everyone’s cell phone started ringing. And ringing. And ringing. And ringing. It worked so well, in fact, that many of the students went home. Evacuate the campus? Sweet dude, let’s hit the pub.

If you’ve never been to GaTech, it’s worth a look. The campus has that eclectic, “Architecturally Diverse” look. I will say the Old Campus is quite quaint. Not as lovely (or as old) as UGA’s North Campus – nothing is prettier than that. But did you know, the Tech Tower used to have a twin? Guess what….it burned down in 1892.

Oops.

Who needs MSM when you have Michael Yon?

St. John’s / Baghdad

Rejoice and be Glad!

I photographed men and women, both Christians and Muslims, placing a cross atop the St. John’s Church in Baghdad. They had taken the cross from storage and a man washed it before carrying it up to the dome. A Muslim man had invited the American soldiers from “Chosen” Company 2-12 Cavalry to the church, where I videotaped as Muslims and Christians worked and rejoiced at the reopening of St John’s, an occasion all viewed as a sign of hope.

Read Confederate Yankee for the whole story…

UPDATE: The Anchoress observes…

What I see in this picture is something more than a historic moment – I don’t even know if that’s what we should call it – I see the sort of thing people do when they are neighbors, when they are working together for their neighborhood, for the good of all who live there, and that makes it seem less “historic” than calmly, wonderfully normal, ordinary, wholesome and sane. I see tolerance, which so many are so certain cannot exist in Iraq – or anywhere in the Middle East. Tolerance in the best sense of the word – converting no one, insisting on nothing beyond ordinary acceptance; tolerance that gives people room to live their lives.

Indeed.

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