Monthly Archives: January 2006

Quarter Notes

Tue, 31 Jan 2006 21:35:20

It’s a gorgeous day here in Topsy Turvy Town. I’m at my part-time gig at the Pontalba building in the Quarter listening to Brian Setzer and nibbling on some Zapp’s. I have two amusing anecdotes; holy crap I’m sounding like the Reader’s Fricking Digest today. Next thing you know I’ll rename the blog Life In Dis United States. Dat will not do at all…
Quarter Note-1 Smells Like Katrina Spirit: This morning a guy walked in the tile shop and apologized repeatedly for smelling like E’au de Katrina. It turns out that he’s the EPA’s man in charge of the Gentilly dump. He’s the guy who makes sure that the fridges are disposed of properly. He told me that no matter how much he washes his clothes they smell like the contents of the Scad Grad’s fridge. Well I added that bit of local color. You locals know what I’m talkin’ about.
After stinking up the shop the Rubbish Poohbah spent $380 on presents for his kith and kin. He plans to burn his clothes if this job ever ends. I told him to be sure that he took them off first.
The Rubbish Poohbah had an excellent if somewhat offbeat idea. He thinks that the city ought to preserve a square block of the Lower Ninth Ward as is to make sure that we *never* forget what happened there last year. He went on to say that we should build a museum on the next block and erect some sort of obelisk in honor of those who died in the storm. I doubt that the COC types would go for such a thing but I like the idea for its quirkiness and audacity. Quirky is my middle name y’all.
Quarter Note-2  “Crime” On St. Peter Street: I toddled over to the A & P on Royal Street a few minutes ago in a vain quest for a Hubig’s Pie which is probably better for the old waistline. I have some extra post-K weight to drop after all.
Anyway the Louisiana State Police is operating out of the Cabildo; part of the state museum and one of the oldest buildings in New Orleans. There was a crowd of state cops on the sidewalk supervising a man in a Hooters T-shirt who was <drum roll> breaking into a police cruiser. Somebody had locked the keys in the car. I started laughing like a hyena. The Sergeant in charge of the scene told me: “If this guy doesn’t break the window we may let him skate.” Roller not ice presumably.
When I passed again after my futile sweet potato pie quest I heard applause: Mr Hooters had done the deed. I told him that I knew a good lawyer if he needed one.  But the cops let the skel walk.
That’s life in the big city; well not quite as big as it used to be…

Ruby Tuesday Meets Tuesday Weld

Tue, 31 Jan 2006 17:24:00

Yeah I know the title has got bupkis to do with my topics. Wanna make something of it? Remember I have the Z-Man to work you over legally and Mike Hammer to do so extra-legally. In the immortal words of Bela Lugosi in Glen Or Glenda: “Beware take care.” They don’t make junkies like Bela any more: modern junkies don’t have style or values. <end of convoluted Sopranos reference>
Item-1 The Singin’ Mayor? Good news in this morning’s local rag: Singin’ Lt Gov Mitch Landrieu has gotten off the dime and plans to challenge C Ray. While my inner satirist will miss the bumbling blurter-in-chief I’m glad that someone COMPETENT is willing to take on the terrible mess that is City Hall in post-K Debrisville. While I plan to support Mitchell I pledge to mock him when he does something mockable. In short even though I plan to root for the home team I will not be a homer; not even in the Simpsonian sense. Mmmm King Cake. Oops I slipped into Homeric mode. Sorry about that Chief. (Time for a rambling parenthetical aside: Every time I run into the great jazz trumpeter Kermit Ruffins he always calls me Chief. We *have* been introduced but I guess he’s as bad with names as I am.)
It should be a very interesting race: C Ray had raised a cool mill pre-K and Mitchell is one of the few local pols who can raise that kind of dosh post-K. But Peggy Wilson is also a viable candidate who could conceivably get into a run-off with either C Ray or Mitchell. Peggy has a lot of white shoe Uptown Repub support which means she’ll be competitive. It wouldn’t shock me if C Ray ran third in a wide-open pedal to the medal  primary. Note to my non-Debrisville readers: there are no party primaries in Louisiana; Repubs and Demos run against one another in the first round. It’s one of many unfortunate legacies from the reign of Le Guv aka Edwin Edwards.
Item-2 Women Of The Storm: A group of prominent New Orleans women has invaded Washington D.C. to lobby members of Congress to get their collective heads out of their asses and give us the help that we need. They’ve also offered members of Congress free passage to Crazytown. I used to work on the Hill and I never met a Congressman who turned down anything free. Way to go ladies.
I’ve linked to an AP story because it calls this group what many of them really are: society women. The local press is bending over backwards to stress the “diversity” of the group. Yes there are Catholics Jews Prots and African-Americans but most of them are upper-middle class and many of them are Momus/Comus/Rex adult deb types. BUT these are precisely the sort of people who will be most effective with Congressional Repubs.  Another note for folks outside NOLA: our high society types are NOT all Tracy Lord/CK Dexter Haven style WASPS; many if not most  of them are Catholics. The same applies to our African-American community which is split (or used to be pre-K) right down the middle between Catholics and Prots. The French founded our city not the Pilgrims. Vive le France.
I do wish however  that the women of the storm  (hereinafter wots another word that even anti-lawyer lawyers gotta use) would have paid more a bit more attention to the Congressional schedule. The House was out of session until today and the wots did most of their invading yesterday. But they *were* offering free stuff so hopefully the staffers they met with will get their bosses to come on down. Let’s convert Debrisville into Junket City.
Btw I loved the blue tarp colored umbrellas that the wots toted around the Capitol. Excellent fashion statement y’all.

 Calling Bob Weir

Mon, 30 Jan 2006 20:30:58

Well, a few minutes after I blogged this morning Mrs. Moron drove off in the Moronmobile. They seem to be moving at a record pace for them: a mere 6 days instead of 13. When the first Moron watch ended I quoted Marty Balin this time it’s the Grateful Dead’s Bob Weir’s turn: I need a miracle everyday. And apparently I got one. It’s not exactly the immaculate conception but hey I’ll take it. I was beginning to think that “Touch Of Grey” would be more fitting but that’s a Garcia-Hunter song and Jerry’s hard to get ahold of these days alas. Perhaps the Morons planned to move  faster but were too busy reading Strindberg for their next coffee klatch with Harvard Boy. And Harvard Boy is a stern taskmaster…

Speaking of the Weir-Barlow tune “I Need A Miracle ” it was a catch phrase used by bedraggled Deadheads seeking tickets outside sold-out arenas man. Sometimes it worked too man. Ah the things I recall from my misspent youth man; frankly it’s amazing that I remember anything at all man. But there’s no truth to the rumor that I ever liked patchouli oil or played hacky-sack.  Of course patchouli oil does serve as an excellent hippie detector if detecting hippies is your thing. It’s not mine that’s a job for Guy Noir or Mike Hammer. Probably not Mike Hammer: he’d pour the patchouli oil down some poor hippies’ throat and shove incense sticks up their nose. I can’t have such a thing on my conscience.

IN LIKE SHINN

Mon, 30 Jan 2006 05:35:58

Well I owe Hornets Coach Byron Scott an apology of sorts. I thought he was talking out of turn when he said that his hoopsters should play “where the wind comes sweeping down the plain” next season and maybe longer. It turns out that he wasn’t freelancing but spouting the company line. His boss George (Kick Me In The) Shinn spouted the same line in a rather snarky encounter with the press after Saturday night’s whupping of the Memphis Grizzlies. (The NBA *really* needs to let teams change their nicknames more easily after they relocate. There were Grizzlies *near* Vancouver but who the hell ever heard of a Grizzly in Memphis with the possible exception of Issac Hayes. And don’t get me started about the Utah Jazz. They oughta be the Utah Polygamists.)

After being good at first while exiled “where the wild wheat sure smells sweet ” Shinn seems to be reverting to the form that made him the most unpopular person in Charlotte North Carolina. He’s lucky in one regard: there’s a long list of people competing to be the least popular person in Debrisville. I think Shinn is behind Archie Bunker Benson Brownie President Beavis Aaron Brooks Governor Meemaw and C Ray but he’s got a chance to move up (down?) the list.

Since the Hornets owner kicked us when we’re down I hereby administer a virtual kick in the Shinn. <whack>”

The Renunciation On Annunciation

Sun, 29 Jan 2006 06:06:08

It’s rainy here in Debrisville so I’m glad that the blue tarp on the roof is history which according to Neil Finn never repeats. Our friendly neighborhood contractors Marc and Jeff have re-roofed 3 houses on this block of Constance Street. They live a mere 5 blocks away so Harvard Boy Chicago Mike and I know where to find them if anything goes wrong. If that happens it could be called the Renunciation on Annunciation; sort of like the Thrilla In Manilla only without the pugilism. Like Michael Palin’s Inquisitor Cardinal Fang our main weapons will be  surprise and sarcasm. Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition.

After that marginally coherent introduction on with the show this is it:

Item-1 The New Moron Watch: Who could ever forget the 13 day flat tire watch? Well, my madcap trashy and idiotic neighbors are at it again. It’s now Day-5 of the unmoved Moronmobile Watch. Mrs. Moron no longer drives her car for whatever reason: me I think it’s because it’s a Ford and they suck. The Moronmobile was parked in front of their house for weeks without moving and parking is very tight here in Debrisville. Last Wednesday   Mr. Moron backed up the crappy Ford and left it in front of my house. I decided to try diplomacy and politely asked him to please park in front of his house instead. He grunted and said: “I’ll move it later.” It’s still there. In Crazytown later *really* means later.

Perhaps this sounds (tom) petty to some of you but the Morons tree hit the back of our house during the storm. The easiest and best way to get the tree off our house was to put a ladder on their side of the common fence. Mrs. Moron was home but didn’t answer the doorbell when we rang. So much for people being ennobled by shared suffering. So I’m entitled to be small and (tom) petty where they’re concerned. Dr A is even more rabid about the Morons than I am and she’s usually the nice one. Besides what’s a little pettiness among friends? <cueing “don’t come around here no more”>

A final Mr. and Mrs. Moron story. I saw them speaking to my friend Harvard Boy yesterday afternoon. I suspect that they were discussing Judge Alito’s views on original intent or perhaps even parsing the meaning of Professor Yiannopoulous’ treatise on Civil Law Property. Dr. A believes that it was a literary discussion: that the Morons were trying to figure out what Ibsen was really driving at when he wrote “Ghosts.” Which was it Harvard Boy?

Item-2 Tax Cut Time: Well folks those zany Orleans Parish tax assessors are at it again. The assessors here are elected: I call them the 7 Dwarfs. Yup that’s right we have 7 tax assessors. It’s totally nuts. Even crazier is the fact that undamaged houses in unflooded sections of the city are being reassessed: down down down even though property values are up up up. Now since my property taxes are going down 15% I suppose I shouldn’t criticize the proverbial gift horse and smack it in the mouth. BUT this is insane the city is starved for money and they’re cutting taxes during a crisis. Who the hell else would do such a stupid thing? Oh that’s right the Federal government under President Beavis has cut taxes during wartime. And people think that we’re crazy…

Item-3: Post-Katrina Promises Unfulfilled: Saturday’s Washington Post (WaPo to news junkies) had an outstanding front page article by Spencer Hsu that played the old compare and contrast game. Mr. Hsu took a look at the promises made by a certain President in his Jackson Square speech on 9/15/05 and found that he’s kept almost none of them. In the immortal words of Gomer Pyle “Surprise surprise surprise.”

POLITICAL POTPOURRI

Sat, 28 Jan 2006 17:18:47

Hmmm sounds like a Jeopardy category. Things never seem to let up here in Debrisville. I remember when it was  a sleepy town nicknamed the Big Easy. For some reason that changed in the summer of 2005…

Item-1 Baker: Bush Delivers Louisiana A  Death Blow: W’s Louisiana Repub allies continue to abandon him. Richard Baker and Bobby Jindal are starting to sound like Mary Landrieu in their critique of Beavis Recovery policies. Baker in fact voted with the administration 91% of the time in 2005. Too bad King George the W doesn’t give a damn about what his vassals think. He’s the King or at least he thinks he is and he only listens to other members of the Royal Family (Prince Jeb of Chadshire and the Dowager Empress Bar) and his courtiers: Lady Rice Earl Turd Blossom Lord Rummy and Prime Minister Duce.

Item-2: Mayoral Race Gossip: Today’s NO Politics column dishes some interesting dirt about two potentially powerful candidates: Singin’ Lt. Gov Mitchell and Audubon Nature Institute Potentate Ron Forman. This is clearly a sign that C Ray is in the political ICU: Forman’s wife Sally is C Ray’s chief flack. Forman would also have the support of mighty jungle beasts and sea creatures: from lions to orangutans  to sharks to electric eels. That sort of clout could give Forman an eely good chance. (Pun disclaimer: That’s a Basil Fawlty line so blame John Cleese not me.)

Item-3  Oliver Acts: Token City Council grownup Oliver (Not Twist) Thomas is also an actor. Well all pols are actors but most of them are bad at it: George HW Butt-Head’s King Lear was very unconvincing. On the other hand Tom DeLay makes an excellent Iago…

Anyway back to Council Prez Oliver Thomas. He’s playing the lead in his bud Anthony Bean’s production of August Wilson’s “Joe Turner’s Come and Gone.”  Oliver and the Beanmeister seem to specialize in putting on Wilson’s plays: this is number three and counting. They’re kinda like a Debrisville version of David Mamet and Joe Mantegna.  I don’t however know if Anthony Bean has a potty mouth…

Break a leg Oliver.

POLITICAL POTPOURRI

Sat, 28 Jan 2006 17:18:47

Hmmm sounds like a Jeopardy category. Things never seem to let up here in Debrisville. I remember when it was  a sleepy town nicknamed the Big Easy. For some reason that changed in the summer of 2005…

Item-1 Baker: Bush Delivers Louisiana A  Death Blow: W’s Louisiana Repub allies continue to abandon him. Richard Baker and Bobby Jindal are starting to sound like Mary Landrieu in their critique of Beavis Recovery policies. Baker in fact voted with the administration 91% of the time in 2005. Too bad King George the W doesn’t give a damn about what his vassals think. He’s the King or at least he thinks he is and he only listens to other members of the Royal Family (Prince Jeb of Chadshire and the Dowager Empress Bar) and his courtiers: Lady Rice Earl Turd Blossom Lord Rummy and Prime Minister Duce.

Item-2: Mayoral Race Gossip: Today’s NO Politics column dishes some interesting dirt about two potentially powerful candidates: Singin’ Lt. Gov Mitchell and Audubon Nature Institute Potentate Ron Forman. This is clearly a sign that C Ray is in the political ICU: Forman’s wife Sally is C Ray’s chief flack. Forman would also have the support of mighty jungle beasts and sea creatures: from lions to orangutans  to sharks to electric eels. That sort of clout could give Forman an eely good chance. (Pun disclaimer: That’s a Basil Fawlty line so blame John Cleese not me.)

Item-3  Oliver Acts: Token City Council grownup Oliver (Not Twist) Thomas is also an actor. Well all pols are actors but most of them are bad at it: George HW Butt-Head’s King Lear was very unconvincing. On the other hand Tom DeLay makes an excellent Iago…

Anyway back to Council Prez Oliver Thomas. He’s playing the lead in his bud Anthony Bean’s production of August Wilson’s “Joe Turner’s Come and Gone.”  Oliver and the Beanmeister seem to specialize in putting on Wilson’s plays: this is number three and counting. They’re kinda like a Debrisville version of David Mamet and Joe Mantegna.  I don’t however know if Anthony Bean has a potty mouth…

Break a leg Oliver.

DOES MICKEY SPILLANE KNOW ABOUT THIS?

Sat, 28 Jan 2006 04:59:59

New Orleans investment banker Mike Hammer announced the other day that he’s running for Mayor. My first reaction to this announcement was: who the hell is he? My second reaction: Woo-hoo another politically inexperienced businessman wants to be our Mayor. It worked out so well with C Ray…

But my inner satirist/blogger finally kicked in and realized that this is a bonanza for the likes of me. Imagine a Mayor like Mickey Spillane’s hard boiled detective Mike Hammer. That Mike Hammer wouldn’t take any shit from posers and pansies like President Beavis or Katrina Kaiser Donald Powell. He’d smack them upside the head with a gat pour whiskey down their throats and make them do his bidding. Mike Hammer was always a very direct guy. Problems with Governor Meemaw? Well Mike had a way with the skirts; he’d charm her and convince her to speak in complete sentences (that would be a first) and to be a stand-up broad. Trouble with the College Of Clowns? Mike Hammer would lock them up in the council chambers and make them an offer they couldn’t refuse. Yeah I know that was Vito Corleone’s line but Mario Puzo and Mickey Spillane went to the same college of hard knocks.

So my advice for Debrisville’s Mike Hammer: get a fedora drink some bourbon forget all that
goo-goo crapola and kick some ass.  Remember:

This entry was published in purple because Mickey Spillane wrote purple prose. Got it? Good. 

BITE ME, BYRON

Fri, 27 Jan 2006 00:46:12

Here’s one  from the kicking us when we’re down department. Hornets Coach Byron Scott did his best Tom Benson impression last night and said that he wants the NBA team to stay in Oklahoma City because attendance is so good.

I’m disappointed in Byron. I was pleased when he was hired to coach the Hornets in 2004. Why? I was a big fan of the great 1980’s LA Lakers teams that featured Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, James Worthy, Michael Cooper, and Byron Scott as the Beaver. I made that last part up but the Beaver was a knucklehead and Byron is being one right now. And who the hell wants to be compared to the Beaver? Actually now that I think of it Pat Riley reminds me of Eddie Haskell…

Back to my slow waltz down memory lane. The Lakers championship run/rivalry with the Boston Celtics coincided with my early days in Louisiana as a student at LSU. I felt like the only white person in Baton Rouge who rooted for the Lakers against the Celtics whose star the great Larry Bird was a white hick from French Lick Indiana. I was also one of the few to have a Mondale-Ferraro bumper sticker on my car which got my tires slashed. Baton Rouge has always been a very red city and living there gave me the blues.

Anyhoo back to the Hornets. Yes their attendance is up in OK City BUT they were horrendous last year with an 18-64 record. This season they’ve already won 20 games and have the probable rookie of the year in Chris Paul. Last year’s team was not only awful but we had to put up with the incessant whining of Baron (Bombs Away) Davis; one of the worst outside and foul shooting guards I’ve ever seen. Baron wasn’t happy unless he brought the rest of the world down and only played when he felt like it.  I pity the long-suffering fans in the Bay Area: Baron is being semi-good right now but you know what they say about leopards and their spots. And Baron is a big whiny leopard *not* a Warrior.

So Byron listen to your owner. George Shinn knows what it’s like to be run out of town (Charlotte) on a rail. (He’s also got a son with a mohawk big ass tattoos and multiple piercings so he knows from pain.) If the Hornets leave New Orleans he’d rather it be *after* giving us another shot. Besides Byron the decision is NOT yours and if you shut up you might not get booed the next time you show your face  in Crazytown in March. It’s not that far away so why give the term March madness an entirely different meaning.

Oh and Byron one last thing: Bite me.

BRING BACK THE PONY EXPRESS/AN ENGLISHMAN IN BUNKIE

Thu, 26 Jan 2006 17:07:25

Item-1 Bring Back The Pony Express: Last night I watched Crazytown’s newest and perhaps craziest news show: 6 On Your Side Live featuring WDSU’s irascible anchor Norman Robinson. Norman is one of a flotilla of ex-WWL reporters anchoring at other stations here. It seems to be a requirement to anchor a news show in these parts. Norman is *seriously* cranky y’all. He always appears ready to bite someone’s head off; sort of like an elegant African-American pitbull. Arf arf chew chew bite bite. Pre-K while respecting his talent and intellect I found Norman’s style somewhat annoying. But the Post-K zeitgeist is a cranky one so Norman fits right in. Bite ‘em Norman.  Also Norman has a kind of clipped quasi-strident delivery which reminds me a bit of the late mega-cranky sportscaster Howard Cosell.

Anyway last night one of Norman’s guests/victims in the “Hot Seat” segment   was a hapless spokesman for the Postal Service. His name escapes me and I don’t feel like googling it either so I’ll just call him the Postal Guy. He insisted that they’re making progress in getting mail delivered in Debrisville. I’m not sure if the Postal Guy and I inhabit the same universe: we have mail service twice a week if we’re lucky. And we haven’t gotten a magazine since we’ve been back. Yo Postal Guy I’m getting seriously cranky without the civilizing effects of the New Yorker. I am a lost soul without a fix of my boy Calvin (Bud to his buds) Trillin. A lesser blogger might just go postal on your ass but not me. Just give me my New Yorker and I’ll go easy on you.

Since the mail service in Debrisville blows I have a suggestion for the USPS: bring back the Pony Express. It couldn’t be any slower than what we’ve got now and just imagine the PR value of galloping hoofbeats bringing magazines to the huddled masses of Crazytown. It’s a winner I tell ya…

Item-2 An Englishman In Bunkie: I was horrified to learn that Comus/Momus/Rex historian and TP columnist James Gill spent his exile in Bunkie Louisiana. The mere thought of it had me giggling like a schoolgirl. Mr. Gill is an elegant rather snooty English émigré and Bunkie is well a tiny burg in central Louisiana.

Bunkie is best known as the town that every LSU undergraduate professor uses as a rim shot laugh line. Even a dry wizened prof with no sense of humor can get a laugh just by saying Bunkie. I am glad that Mr. Gill survived his Bunkie experience with his mind intact. Life in Bunkie has been known to turn city folk into raving lunatics. And no gentle readers I have only driven through Bunkie. My lunacy comes from other things such as living next door to Mr. and Mrs. Moron…