Archive for November, 2006

Oysters for Dan

As many of you know, I’ve been working in the kitchen at Dick & Jenny’s for the past several months while TBK and I get reorganized. I’m taking a break for family reasons these days (my mother is seriously ill in Dallas), but I miss the Being There and the adrenaline rush and all that comes with working at a busy and successful restaurant in a vibrant food city. I have worked in a series of restaurants in my life, but none have been staffed with folks as cooperative, helpful and committed to the Common Good of making things work. I’m not spamming for the place, really — I have a point. Bear with me.

One of the dishes calls for some fried oysters on the side. The man in charge of this dish is Dan, who is the souschef. No matter what else is going on in the maxed-out, superfast environment of the jammed kitchen, we have to make sure these oysters are available. No matter what our other job(s) or station(s), they have to be there.
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Deep in the heart of Lexus

I’ve seen some interesting nationally televised commercials lately. I think we see them as nuisances that come on to interrupt something good, so we ignore most of them. If you look really hard and analyze them carefully, you may find the stupidity in them as I do. I have also come to notice a severe lack of judgment and class in some of them. Some of them are just down right disgusting. I have a few in mind, so you can check for yourself. Here goes.
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Jesus stole my WII, so I shot him

The Holiday season has come upon us once again with its usual post Thanksgiving fanfare. The Friday newspaper was full of ads and there are tons of Holiday commercials running across the tube all day long. People toiled in the snow just to be the first to have a PS3 or an X-treme Elmo or whatever bullshit the toy companies are trying to hypnotize your kids with. Whatever happened to sticks and boxes? That’s what I used to play with.
I could imagine the reaction I would have gotten from one of my parents if I asked them to go sit in front of Lionel play world at 3am because they only had fourteen Boba Fetts in stock before Christmas. They would have laughed in my face. Why is it that these days parents are willing to do these stupid things for their fat, unenergetic, blob like children who are already over privileged beyond belief?
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“The Final Indignity”

I didn’t watch the Comic Relief special on the Saturday before Thanksgiving, and apparently nobody else I know did either, because nobody told me about Billy Crystal’s “Jazzman” bit. People who know me know that I love outrageously bad hollywood cliches of New Orleans.. and this thing quite possibly trumps them all. I heard it today when I was listening to last week’s episode of “The Best Show on WFMU” hosted by Tom Scharpling. At one point, Tom states “How much more suffering do the people of New Orleans have to take? They’ve got this guy heaping the final indignity on them.”

Listen to the act here, backed by Scharpling’s hilarious commentary.

free stuff to do in December

Holidays are great because you can look at Faberge eggs (and maybe a couple of paintings I think) and also hear great music in a beautiful place for free!

Check out NOMA http://www.noma.org/ through December 31 – free for all Louisiana residents. The picture below is from their current temporary exhibit called Carnival!

Also free weekly concerts http://fqfi.org/index.php?id=10,66,0,0,1,0 every Wednesday in St.Louis Cathedral (starts November 29 – thats tomorrow sillies)!

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The Other Side of the Coin

Last week, Dan wrote about the displaced folks in Memphis who accepted a free house from a church, did not move into it, and then sold it for a $60,000 profit. And of course this story went national in the latest round of press trying to paint New Orleanians as a bunch of lazy grifting negroes.

Anyway, my opinion all along was that these people are indeed assholes, but if the house had been donated by say, McDonalds and not a church, than nobody would give a damn. But since a poor, hapless church congregation was swindled, suddenly these people became total villians.

The church that donated the house was the Church of God in Christ (COGIC), a national evangelical pentecostal church. It is the fourth largest Christian Church in the U.S., and is headquartered in Memphis. Let’s look at another real estate deal they participated in:

1981 – COGIC receives the deed to the Stax recording studio in Memphis from Union Planters Bank for $1. For the next eight years they let this historic property fall into disrepair, and they tear it down in 1989. About a decade later, COGIC sells the land for $100,000, and the Stax Museum is built on the property.

Hmmm, karma is a bitch, huh?

Bureaucratic Bermuda Triangle

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I waited all weekend for Monday to roll around and for everyone at City Hall to show up with their tryptophan hangovers to answer some questions that I have about blight, and demolitions processes, to address some grey areas in this current and next wave of recovery. Are we going to start taking properties away from little old ladies because they can’t board up their own home in the upper ninth? Why is Rob Couhig on the board of NORA and also part owner a modular home company? Is the public notice process being followed for all demolitions?
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Higher edumacation

I’m struggling with something that saddens me — not because it’s hopeless and not because I don’t understand the reasons for it. I just wish it didn’t exist — and wishes are sometimes useless and pointless things.

A family that lives across the street from us is really an extended family (6? 8? 10? I really don’t know, but it’s a big place). I’m sure it varies a bit from week to week. They are very nice people (mostly. I mean, the ones we’ve met are) and are hard-working and seem to be as honest as any of us. It’s one of those things we still see a lot of in New Orleans these days — in that one relative owns the place and all the other relatives (at least the ones who have come back) kinda share the wealth and expenses and the living space. We’re doing somewhat the same thing in this house, on a smaller level.

Among those in the house are three teenagers — a girl 18 (and pregnant) and her brothers 17 and about 15 or 16. All are enrolled in public school and all of them attend periodically. Or at least sometimes. They’re nice kids — affable, intelligent and conversant. More than so many kids, they’ve obviously been provided with a family environment that encourages curiosity and respect. So why do they concern me so much?
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Gator in Bayou St. John!

This should not come as a suprise after I reported about the family of wild hogs living in City Park. As I can tell, police were called to Bayou St. John near the Mid-City post office on Thanksgiving Day, after reports of a five foot gator in the bayou. They were ill-equipped to handle the situation and the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries was called to come get it. This being a holiday weekend I’m sure they were slow to respond and may or may not have caught the reptile. Therese from the Bayou Coffee House forwarded this picture to the MCNO mailing list, along with some wise words; “Please watch your kids and dogs. It was not scared of people.”

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Like Kids?…Like the Saints?

Picture this, you are at home watching the Saints game and the kids are running all over the place. Brees is passing long down the field…did we catch it? Did they catch it? Damn kids!
“Get out of the way!”

How can you love two things so much your kids and your Saints. You want to show them both how much you care but one is always getting in the way of the other? Well, here’s your chance to show the two most important things in your life how much you care.

Join us at

Barnes and Noble Westbank

For

A Special Storytime With

Drew Brees

Monday 11/27/06
@
7:00 pm

A portion of the sales from the entire store for the whole day will be donated to the Breesdream Foundation.

That’s right, Drew Brees, star quarterback for the New Orleans Saints will be reading to the kids. So, bring the little rug rats down to Barnes and Noble, meet your favorite star and keep the kids entertained all at the same time. Everybody Wins!

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