I met Wali, a 32-year-old teacher, while he was visiting a friend in New Orleans following a breakup with his girlfriend and his second hospitalization for bipolar disorder. We stayed in touch and when he returned a few months later, he agreed to share his story with me.
I almost froze to death in there—they shut off all the heat in the buildings. I was in a locked cell by myself with paper clothes on. All that was there was a mattress. The guards really beat the shit out of me; when I first got there I was having blackouts, and apparently I was talking a lot of shit to the guards.
I met with Ember on her fortieth birthday. Our conversation took place on the hood of her bus in the Upper Ninth Ward in New Orleans, LA and focuses predominantly on love addiction and borderline personality disorder.
I met Yemoja Oshun at an art market in New Orleans and I was immediately intrigued by her career path so I asked if she would share her story with me. Our conversation focuses largely on healing her own sexual abuse through BDSM and her role in helping others heal through sensual bodywork.
Kelly and I met to talk by the Banksy at the old drop-in center just outside the French Quarter. His story focuses on growing up in foster care and the powerful events in his life that centered around New Orleans and Hurricane Katrina.
This conversation took place on January 31st, 2017 at the neutral ground on St. Roch Ave. in New Orleans. Raskull had been hopping trains with her boyfriend Ian and her dog Spaghetti for quite a while by the time I met her. Here’s a brief glimpse into Raskull’s life.
The episode that you’re about to listen to touches on all three, addiction, mental health, and New Orleans. I’ve known David in passing for a few years. He was a barista at a coffee shop I often went to on Lower Decatur in the French Quarter. He was also roommates with a friend of mine, Corey, who died from a fentanyl overdose last year.
For years now I've considered how powerful it could be to share audio stories. Finally, a couple of weeks ago, I decided to really pursue that. I started a podcast by the same name, The Hidden South, and it's now available on most of the major podcast apps.